Ellington Youth Services

Parenting Resources

Positive Parenting Resources


Ruth Ettenberg Freeman, LCSW has taught parenting skills to thousands of parents and professionals in Connecticut for the past 25 years. She has spoken to parents in Ellington for the last two years and has graciously shared some of her information for us to post here.





Positive Parenting -Emotional Intelligence Overivew 2011.pdf

Positive Parenting -Problem Solving 2011.pdf

Positive Parenting I- Statements.pdf

Positive Parenting Reflective Listening 2011.pdf


Parent Connections on Alcohol Use



Alcohol Facts

  • Nearly 70% of 8th graders perceive alcoholic beverages as “fairly easy” or “very easy” to get.
  • By the time they complete high school nearly 80% of teenagers have consumed alcohol, 30% report having been drunk in the past month, and 29% report having five or more drinks in a row in the past two weeks.
  • Approximately 20% of 8th graders report having recently (within the past 30 days) consumed alcohol compared to 35% of 10th graders and almost 50% of 12th graders.
  • A little over 20% of 8th graders report having been drunk at least once in their life compared to almost 45% of 10th graders and 60% of 12th graders.
  • A person who begins drinking as a young teen is four times more likely to develop alcohol dependence than someone who waits until adulthood to use alcohol.
  • During adolescence significant changes occur in the body, including the formation of new networks in the brain. Alcohol use during this time may affect brain development.
  • Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among youth ages 15-20, and the rate of fatal crashes among alcohol-involved drivers between 16 and 20 years old is more than twice the rate for alcohol-involved drivers 21 and older. Alcohol use also is linked with youthful deaths by drowning, suicide, and homicide.
  • Alcohol use is associated with many adolescent risk behaviors, including other drug use and delinquency, weapon carrying and fighting, and perpetrating or being the victim of rape.

*According to the Department of Health and Human Services  

Important Information




  • A Better High - How Eating, Laughing and Other Stuff Can Get You High Naturally, Everyday by Matt Bellace, Ph.D
  • Teen-Proofing - Fostering Responsible Decision Making in Your Teenager by John Rosemond
  • Get Out of My Life, But First Could You Drive Me & Cheryl to the Mall: A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager by Anthony E. Wolf, Ph.D
  • From Binge to Blackout -  A Mother and Son Struggle with Teen Drinking by Chris Volkmann and Toren Volkmann
  • How to Say NO and Keep Your Friends - Peer Pressure Reversal for Teens and Preteens by Sharon Scott
  • Just Say Know:Talking With Kids About Drugs and Alcohol by Cynthia Kuhn, Ph.D, Scott Swartzwelder, Ph.D, and Wilkie Wilson, ,Ph.D
  • Talking to Tweens: Getting It Right BEFORE It Gets Rocky with your 8 to 12 Year-Old by Elizabeth Hartley-Brewer
  • 50 Rules Kids Won't Learn in School: Real World Antidotes to Feel-Good Education by Charles J. Sykes
  • Queen Bees & Wannabes by Rosalind Wiseman: Helping your daughter survive cliques, gossip, boyfriends and other realities of adolesence.
Parenting Tips
  • Talk with your child honestly. Make discussions about tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs part of your daily conversation.
  • Really listen to your child. Encourage your child to share questions and concerns about tobacco, alcohol and other drugs. Do not do all the talking or give long lectures.
  • Help your child develop self-confidence. Look for all the good things in your child-and then tell your child how proud you are.
  • Help your child develop strong values. Talk about family values. Teach your child how to make decisions based on these standards. Explain that these are the standards for your family, no matter what other families might decide. 
  • Be a good example. Look at your own habits and thoughts about tobacco, alcohol and other drugs. Your actions speak louder than words.
  • Help your child deal with peer pressure and acceptance. Discuss the importance of being and individual and the meaning of real friendships.
  • Make family rules that help your child say “no.” Talk with your child about your expectation that he/she will say “no” to drugs and alcohol. Spell out what will happen if he breaks these rules. Be prepared to follow through, if necessary.
  • Encourage healthy, creative activities. Look for ways to get
  • Team up with other parents. Work with other parents to build a drug-free environment for children. When parents join together against drug use, they are much more effective than when they act alone.
  • Realize what to do if you child has a drug or alcohol problem.Realize that no child is immune. Learn the signs of drug and alcohol use. Take seriously any concerns you hear from friends, teachers, or other kids.