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
Years ago I watched the movie called, “The Impossible”. It was based on the true story of a family engulfed in the waters of a large tsunami in Thailand. Confronted with unimaginable obstacles, the parents were desperate to find their children and each other. They would not give up no matter the cost. The physical, mental, and emotional waves of agony from their circumstances would cause any parent to be fearful, distressed and in crisis.
Today, there are waves of crisis pulling many parents under through their hurting teen. In the eyes of the parent, their problems look too big and impossible to change for the better. These types of crises vary from family to family: suicidal attempts, mental illness, drug overdose, self-harming, risky behaviors, running away, etc… Continue reading
Have you ever asked God to intervene in your teen’s life at any cost? Have you ever been desperate enough to give God choices to remedy the crisis? When the answer came, were you prepared for how God handled it?
When I was in one of those situations, I prayed, by giving God two choices that I asked for thinking those requests would rectify the problem. However, when the answer came, it was what I had asked, but way more than what I had planned, wanted or could handle.
In fact, the answer that I received was heartbreaking, devastating, scary, painful, and wishing that I had never prayed the prayer that I did. I don’t think that I had ever cried so much or been so fearful of what was presented to me from that answer. Continue reading
Going down the expressway, her screams became louder and more piercing. She couldn’t stop. She was beyond overwhelmed. She could not put into words how she felt. All she could do was scream. One long scream after the other as she drove.
“Jesus!” “Jesus!” “Help my child Jesus!”
Tears flowed down her face as she tried to keep her focus on the road. The information she received devastated her. How was she going to get through her workday with this newest development?
It was out of her hands. She had nothing to hold on to but her faith. Her prayers became groans of such deep pain. She felt so helpless. She could not see the answers with her human eyes. This was something only God could do.
Sleep was hard to come by during those early morning hours. She tossed and turned while her thoughts raced. Nearing her work place, she wiped her tears hoping no one would notice her blushed face from crying. Continue reading
Your teen wants to hang out with her friend. They have been best buds for years. But your teen has been going through some very difficult problems. So difficult, that it has caused concern by other parents.
Before you know it, your teen’s social life has dwindled and parents are giving excuses why their teen can’t socialize with your teen. The more parents you talk to, the more their stories sound the same.
“Sorry, my teen is involved in a new commitment.”
“Sorry but maybe another time.”
“Would like for them to get together but they will be too busy for an extended period of time.”
Then the stares begin. Or maybe you got a phone call by a relative or school official because they were contacted by another parent over the concern of what they’ve seen or heard. Continue reading