For many parents with a teen who is struggling or in crisis, it seems that the road they are traveling on is much like the Great Wall of China. The question most often asked, “When will this be over?” can resonate in a big way when it relates to that very distinctive road.
The journey for many is long and tiring, filled with highs and lows and twisted turns that are not expected. It involves strength when many parents feel so weak. Sometimes there is confusion and frustration if a parent is wondering if they are doing the right thing or going in the right direction.
In the dark moments, it is very difficult to see the path of wisdom that guides a parent into the right decisions that need to be made. Fear can overwhelm a parent and stop them in their tracks, keeping them from finding the help they need.
What parents do not realize is that there are others on the same path. They are trying to find answers and an end to their journey just as much as the other parent passing them by.
There really is an end to this journey, just like there is an end to the Great Wall of China, into the Bohai Sea. I never thought there would be an end to the journey of my teen’s depression, self-harm, suicidal thoughts, anxiety, and other issues my teen was suffering from. But they did. How?
With God’s help, guidance and wisdom, He gave us the strength to get through it. It didn’t happen overnight. It took time, lots of time with prayer and His Word to bring about healing and hope. We didn’t have to walk alone on the journey either. He was there by our side through it all.
Looking back, I am thankful for that journey. My faith in God changed to an intimate relationship with Him that I would never want to lose. It increased our prayer life. Even in our brokenness, we were vessels that God used to minister to others in their time of need. Our hope was restored and there was not just healing for our teen, but for our whole family.
Are we still on that great journey? Slowly, we are coming near the end of the path. What I offer to you is this:
- Pray – Prayer is powerful. Using the scriptures as your prayer module is even more powerful.
- Seek the Word of God for your wisdom in all matters. He will guide your every step and bring others to help you.
- Get involved in a support group who understands your needs and pain.
- Seek counsel from a therapist, clergy, and doctor if needed.
- Try to find rest – You need rest to gain strength and keep your health intact.
- Listen to uplifting and encouraging music. My favorite is KLove.
- Find one person you can trust to share your prayers and needs with ( such as someone else walking the same journey).
- Remind yourself that God is BIGGER than any problem, crisis or circumstance. He knows your teen better than you and loves them just as much. He knows what their needs are. Just rely and trust in the Lord!
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (NIV)
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (KJV)