Some of my close friends and relatives are no longer allowed to drive my children. I didn't smell alcohol fumes on their breath or notice that their backseat lacks seat belts.

I simply received text messages from them. While they were driving.

"But I can text without looking at my phone," friends tell me when I share my concerns that people are out there texting and driving — a lot more people than I realized, according to a rerun of Oprah that aired today.

In fact, so many people I have spoken to about this find texting behind the wheel so normal that I am feeling seriously behind the times for the first time at 36. For teen drivers — already among the most dangerous people on the road — the classic "9 and 3" hands-on-the-wheel position has apparently given way to one hand on the wheel, one hand typing on the cell phone. Even people my age tell me they do it all the time and don't see a problem with it.

Turns out, most people who text and drive think they can drive safely while they're doing it. This video shows how wrong they are.

Research shows that even if your eyes are on the road, distracting your brain with texting or even talking on a cell phone hands free increases your risk of accident more than drunk driving does.

Besides, I know my friends do more than text without looking at their phones while driving, because I have had them read and reply to my messages from the freeway.

Today I'm taking Oprah's No Phone Zone pledge, and I'm making a pledge to myself to ask any other adults who drive my children not to use their phones behind the wheel. If only I could do the same for the countless drivers out there texting behind the wheel when my kids are crossing the street or playing on the sidewalk.

If you have a teen driver, I would highly recommend asking them to take this pledge as well. The teens who spoke on the Oprah show — including one who killed two people while texting and driving — said that this activity is just considered normal in their age group.

I'm not saying I will always have the willpower not to take a quick call while on the road — the pledge gives you the option of just pledging not to text and drive, pledging to only talk hands-free, or, best of all, pledging to always pull over before even answering a quick call.

I can definitely pledge not to text and drive. And I will try the pulling over thing. I really will.

Pledging myself is the easy part. The difficult part is how to explain my qualms when a friend offers to pick up one of my children. I'm a pretty relaxed mom and I don't want to come off as judgmental.

I'm going to have to bite the bullet and just ask, next time, before moving over a car seat to someone else's car: "You don't text and drive, do you?"