When I was growing up, I was not very close to my father. In fact, as I got older in my teen years, my relationship was almost non-existent. We rarely spoke. Although I badly wanted to have a relationship with him, part of the problem was due to the fact that he was an only child. He also experienced the loss of his mother at the age of twelve and the rejection of his own father soon after that loss.
Needless to say, he was not given a good fatherly image nor was he able to truly deal with all the heavy baggage he carried as he aged. Continue reading
She was 16, pregnant, and involved in a relationship with someone in their twenties. When asked why she would be with a man who obviously didn’t care about her, all she could say was, “I could never leave him. I love him. Yes, he has hit me. But I’m okay with that.”
The young man was sweet and caring. He would do anything for the girl he loved. However, he also was willing to allow her to hit him, curse him, threaten him, emotionally manipulate, and humiliate him in private and in public. Yet, his love for her would remain. Continue reading
There is a common thread that unites many parents of teens today affected with mental illness. This thread is the unwillingness or refusal by teens to take medication for their mental impairment.
It is frustrating, scary and overwhelming. How can you help your teen when all they do is battle you? You beg, plead, bribe, or threaten in every way for them to take their medicine. None of it works.
So what does work? There is only one place to get that answer – your teen.
Now you may think the only response you are going to get from your teen is the word, “No!” After all, that is a common word you have been confronted with daily. Just because they give a negative answer does not mean that teens want to live in a life of mental confusion. They truly want what every other teen has – normalcy or free of illness. Continue reading
It’s Mother’s Day! Flowers, candy, and a day off from cleaning and cooking. That is what many moms wish for. These are some of the things that a mother enjoys while the day is celebrated. Some families go all out. They give lavish retreats away from home, a day at the spa, or give praise through cards, phone calls, and social media to express their love for “Mom”.
However, being a “mom” of a teen in crisis brings about a very different kind of Mother’s Day. You see, teens who are hurting and struggling have moms who put themselves last on the list of receiving care. We also don’t always experience the benefits or rewards of adulation along with hugs and words of love and thankfulness. Continue reading
Every other day, I have been tracking the news story of Elizabeth Thomas, the young teen who was kidnapped by her teacher Tad Cummins from Tennessee.
Parents across the country are shocked that this could have happened. The term “grooming” is a word often used when an adult figure manipulates, deceives, and earns the trust of the victim through various forms of coercion.
Sadly, more and more authority figures are “grooming” young teens at their most vulnerable times. It can happen in schools, churches, and sports teams. Many have questioned or made statements about Elizabeth Thomas such as, “She chose to be with him,” or “She can run away.” However, they do not understand the psychological control this teacher has over her that started a long time ago under the guise of a teacher mentoring a student in school.
Teens don’t just jump into a relationship with someone older. There are many factors when combined set the perfect stage for the grooming of the victim.
So what types of teens are targeted for grooming? Continue reading