Thursday, April 16, 2015

Raising Teenagers in 2015

I'm going to be completely honest here... as a parent of preteen/teen age kids, I am scared. How did we get to a place where we talk about suicide daily? How did it happen that we need to have suicide prevention training? How do people throw around the words "Go Kill Yourself" and think it won't have an impact? These are not conversations I ever had 20 years ago. 

My heart is breaking for my community. For the depression. For the stress to be perfect. For all the death that's happening at people's... children's... own hands. It seems like every week I hear of another teenager who has taken their own life. 

What was so bad?! What were they going through that caused them to do what they did? I am not judging... I am seriously just asking. I want to know. No, I NEED to know. I have a 15 year old and a 12 year old in my house and I need to know how to protect them. I am TERRIFIED of this life and these ways. 

As a believer, we are not of this world. I understand that day to day life can wear on us, but in the big picture, those little struggles we are going through won't mean much in the end. I spend so much time in prayer every day... praying for my children, their friends, our community. That they know they are loved... that they are worthy... that there is a purpose for their lives. 

Any moment that one of my kids starts to act differently or seems blue, I panic. I couldn't imagine either of them doing something to hurt themselves .I want to be observant but not overbearing. I want to teach my kids it's OK to be sad at times and give them healthy ways to deal with it. I want them to recognize signs of depression in their friends, but I don't want to plant ideas in their heads so they start seeing things that aren't there. I want to know how to speak with them to know if it's just a moment they are going through or something we need to get help with. 

I don't want to assume I know all the answers. I don't want to blow something off as "attention-seeking" that could be more. I need divine intervention to tell me the difference between moody and suicidal. 

I know I cannot change the world... and I know I am not alone in this struggle. I just want people to be nice to each other. Quit the bullying. Quit the harassment. Stop picking on people and just love them. No one needs to be perfect, we were never called to be. Love people for who they are, not what you expect them to be. 

Please read through this great page I found... it has so much helpful information. Help save a life. 

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