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The Highs, Lows, and Challenges of Parenting Teens

  • Mira Costa High School Small Theater 1401 Artesia Boulevard Manhattan Beach, CA, 90266 United States (map)

Please join us for our first Families Connected group discussion on the topic of teen alcohol and drug use. The discussion will be moderated by Dr. Greg Allen, Director of Freedom4U, who will be answering parents' questions and will share parenting strategies.  

Parents will have the opportunity to share their own personal stories, strategies, and concerns in a supportive environment. The discussion will be kicked off by Cyndi Strand, mother of two MCHS graduates. Cyndi will share her own personal experience and insight. Read Cyndi's story below the RSVP form.

Please RSVP below:

Name *

Cyndi's Story


Hi, I am Cyndi Strand – a former Grandview, MBMS and Mira Costa parent.  My husband and I have lived in Manhattan Beach for 20 years and have been active in all facets of the schools and the community.
As a parent, we all have plans, dreams and hopes for our children.  Sometimes these are realized and sometimes they aren’t.  When they are realized we have a tendency to ‘expect‘ it.  When they aren’t, we are caught off guard and left confused, angry, afraid and many times, ashamed.  I fit into both the ‘realized’ and the ‘unrealized’ categories.  And let me tell you, the unrealized can be life altering.
My (our) son was a good student, athletic, nice looking and quite popular.  He was accepted to several decent 4 year colleges.  He had his whole life in front of him and the only limits were those he placed on himself, which he did.  He became involved with drugs.
I understand the life altering pain of a drug addicted child.  The past years have presented me with DUI and other arrests, inpatient treatment, relapses, sober living homes, drug overdoses, jail and the court system.  I know the anger, the denial, the sadness and the shame of having an addict for a son.  I know what it is like to be alone and feel like ‘the only one’ with this problem.  Isn’t everyone else’s home life perfect?  I thought so.  So what was wrong with me?
My desire is to use my experiences to help others keep an eye out for the signs we often ignore and to share strategies with parents regarding helping their child avoid that path. Additionally, I hope to use my experiences and turn a negative into a positive by being supportive to other parents who are, or may be, facing a similar hardship.  There is no need to feel alone and powerless.  Just knowing you are not alone can make things more manageable.  I don’t have all the answers, far from it.  But I have walked miles in these shoes and I want not only share my thoughts but also if it’s needed, I want to provide a shoulder to lean on. 

Earlier Event: November 18
MBUSD Board Workshop