Becky Dyer

Mother of 8-year-old
Deputy Sheriff/Former D.A.R.E. Officer
Hutchinson, Kansas

As a former D.A.R.E. and school resource officer in Reno County, Kansas, I am out every day in my community—particularly at schools—working to prevent substance abuse. When I heard about the Five Moms Campaign, I was inspired to raise awareness about this problem among teenagers. Cough medicine abuse is something people don’t really know about or ever think would be a problem, and I want parents to know that it can be just as dangerous and prominent as other drugs.

There was one other inspiration that made me decide to be a part of the Five Moms Campaign: my adopted son. My son is six, and has had a difficult life full of changes. He is a little behind in learning and is just starting to make progress. I will do everything in my power to make sure that as he grows older, he is able to catch up in school and graduate without any setbacks, especially something like cough medicine abuse.

As I watch my son grow, so do the dreams I have for him. And, those dreams don’t include doing drugs. To help build those dreams, I try to spend as much quality time with my son as possible. We enjoy swimming, camping, playing at the park, and taking walks in the summertime. And as he gets older, having conversations about the dangers of cough medicine abuse and other drug abuse will certainly be a part of our “fun” time together.

Working as a school resource officer, I have the opportunity to teach kids about the dangers of drugs. It’s a great feeling to know that at the end of the day, I might have convinced at least one kid that it’s not worth destroying his or her life with drugs. But my influence can only go so far. Parents have to do their part at home for the message to really get through.

This campaign is my opportunity to reach out to parents. You can make sure that what your child learns from D.A.R.E. and other programs doesn’t stay at school. And make sure that what you learn about cough medicine abuse doesn’t stay with you. Share it with your kids. There are many worries in today’s world that we can’t control. But this—cough medicine abuse—is something that you can help protect your children from. It’s something you can control.