What would you do if you caught a neighbor's child smoking?

To say something or look the other way, that is the question

Moms Talk invites you and your circle of friends to help build a community of support for mothers and their families throughout the Lehigh Valley.

Each week in Moms Talk, our Moms Council of experts and smart moms take your questions, give advice and share solutions.

Moms, dads, grandparents and the diverse families who make up the Lehigh Valley will have a new resource for questions about schools, the best pediatricians, 24-hour pharmacies and the thousands of other issues that arise while raising children.

Moms Talk will also be the place to drop in for a talk about the latest parenting hot topic.

Introducing our Mom’s Council

Each week, the members of our Moms Council will help to shape the Moms Talk discussion – by suggesting Moms Talk topics and by being among the first to join the conversation.

  • Lisa Amey, of Upper Milford Township, is a stay-at-home mom to an 8-year-old son and a 5-year-old daughter. A past president of the MOMS Club of Emmaus and long time member of MOPs (Mothers of Preschoolers), Lisa is an Independent Consultant for Arbonne International. 
  • Lisa Drew, of Emmaus, is a certified nutritionist and personal trainer, wellness and fitness coach with more than 17-years experience. She is the mother of a 13-year-old girl and a 9-year-old boy.
  • Jennifer Elston, of Emmaus, has almost two decades of professional experience in child development and counseling.  She is currently a stay-at-home mom to two beautiful girls. Together with her husband, Chris, she owns Christopher Elston Photography.
  • Lisa Merk, of Lower Macungie, is a stay-at-home mother of four boys – a 12-year-old and 6-year-old triplets. Lisa is a past president of the MOMS Club of Lower Macungie East. In her “spare” time, Lisa teaches piano to school-age children. 

So grab a cup of coffee and settle in as we start the conversation today with a question from Moms Council member Lisa Merk

What would you do if you were out somewhere in the community and saw your 15-year-old neighbor smoking cigarettes with a group of friends? Would you approach him/her right then and there to address the issue?  Would you wait to talk to him/her until later? Would you tell the parents? Or, would you not do anything at all?

Share your thoughts and stories with us in the comments. 

If you would like to become a part of the Moms Council and/or have ideas for future Moms Talk questions, please email Jennifer.marangos@patch.com.

Rosemary B April 11, 2011 at 05:31 PM
But, what other kids do effects our kids and the society at large. Our kids might be asked to cover up for their kids, ect. Getting away with smoking might embolden the kid to then try other dangerous behavior. And what if it is pot or drinking? It can put us all at risk if it is not nipped in the bud.
Jennifer Elston April 11, 2011 at 11:48 PM
I think that by looking the other way, one is taking the easy way out. Sure, it's easy to keep quiet. It takes compassion and humanity to help someone. This is a child we are talking about, yes? It is against the law to smoke at that age. Until he is of legal age, he is under his parents' guidance, and they need to know that the child is smoking. It's true that no one really knows what is going on in others' homes. If the parents are already aware then at least you can say you've not sat idle watching a child make a poor choice.
Miller April 12, 2011 at 12:50 AM
Rose mary.. the reason the kids r the wasy they r is cause society..back when my parents were kids u got the crap bet out of u and u learned ur leason the first time.. and my parents are good ppl...Society lets theese kids get away with almost anyhting u cant do anything or someone will call CIY on u so ur dam if u do and dam if u dnt
ArtmamaJen June 07, 2011 at 01:33 PM
It's hard enough keeping track of and worrying about what my own children are doing. I certainly don't need to be getting into my neighbors and their families' business.
Jasmine March 08, 2012 at 11:03 PM
I am a teenager and if my neighbor caught me smoking and told my mom before talking to me first I would be extremely irate and offended. She wouldn't necessarily know the circumstances, so just reporting to my mother would be out of place and nosey.


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