There’s a pervading silence that exists around subjects like depression, mental illness, abuse, gas-lighting and in our culture around dating…. and the list can go on. We all know they are bad, we don’t always know why, worse is when we warn children about them but won’t give them enough information. Knowledge is power. Half information is as good as no information.
I had a talk with a teenager today. A new teenager about boys, about dating, about staying safe around strangers, about being aware and deflecting potential abuse situation. It surprised me that she didn’t know what physical or sexual abuse is. It surprised me while it pleased me that she has been protected enough to not know about the ugly side of reality and it is a reality. 6 out of 10 kids will at some point in time face abuse and half of that will be young boys. So please, talk to your children. Be honest, be open, spare them the gory details but answer their questions. Give them full information on what is and isn’t acceptable, give them the knowledge that they will need to protect themselves in age appropriate language.
Break the silence. Talk to your teenager. They are confused enough about all the changes they are going through. If you keep the cloak of silence around issues that are pertinent to them now, when and how do you expect them to find out the things they would need to know, to make the right choices, to stay safe? Where better to gain their knowledge than from you, their parents?
Heart breaks are inevitable. We all have to go through them. In fact, now I think a few of them is really good for the soul. It can make you stronger, better, more mature as a person. But that also depends on the choices you make when faced with heart-break. You will go through the differing stages of grief over the loss of a relationship. Bear through it, don’t wallow in the depression, resolve to keep moving and you will find yourself having moved on soon enough.
We ARE the choices we make. And we have the option of making a new choice with every new day that we live. So make today count. Made a mistake? correct it today. Committed to something? see it through to the end. Do what is good for your soul. And if you are a parent, it is your cardinal duty to prepare your kids for the real world. Give them lessons on human nature, on money, on life, on respect, on love by loving them unconditionally. They will learn more from the examples that you will set by your own actions far more than from the language or words that you will use.
Break the silence. today.