Posts filed under ‘hopelessness’

I Accept You Just As You Are

Have a teen or adult child with a secret? Not just any secret, their sexuality secret? Did they tell you or you just ‘knew’ that they preferred same sex mates? What did you do with that information? Did you ostracize them or tell them that you accept them for who they are?

The beautiful thing about being parents, is that we not only have the task of raising teens into wonderful adults, we also need to listen with non-judgmental ears when they tell us things about themselves – especially things that may be different from us. If your teen feels that you don’t or won’t accept them for who they are, they begin to lose trust in you and in themselves. If you won’t accept them, what’s the chance that society will accept them? Who do they go to share their “weight of the world” secrets? Many teens who feel that they can’t talk to anyone (their secret is so bad), commit suicide.

genderbread

Here are some words you may share if or when you need them.

“It’s time for you to move forward with your life and stop worrying about whether you will be accepted for who you are. I’ve known (intuitively) that you had a different sexual preference since your high school / college days. It’s okay with me. Don’t worry about your father either. None of us has the right to cast stones. There is no reason to feel ashamed or have any other feelings that make you feel depressed, unworthy, needing to hide. It’s important (to me) that you live an authentic life, full of love. Be who you are and leave those other concerns behind you. You are important to me. You are safe and perfect just as you are. I love you.”

As parents, we have the responsibility for raising our children, and we also have the choice of accepting them for who they are. We may not like decisions that they ultimately make, but God doesn’t always like the decisions that we make. Accepting our kids for who they are helps them build self-acceptance and self-esteem. We also have to be okay that our friends, family and church may not agree with or accept our child’s sexuality. Thinking now about how you want to handle discussions with your family, friends or pastor, would be a great idea.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Author & Parent Coach

Trying to Stay Sane While Raising Your Teen (St. Paul Press, 2010)
The Pampered Prince: Moms Create a GREAT Relationship with Your Son (St. Paul Press, 2012)
Raising Your Daughter Through the Joys, Tears & HORMONES! (220 Communications, 2013)

December 8, 2013 at 1:09 pm

When Suicide is NOT the Answer

I had a friend in high school who told me he was going to ‘kill himself’. I was beside myself with worry, told my parents and my dad said – “If he was going to kill himself, he wouldn’t tell you first.” Of course the guy did not kill himself, but my brother did… Parents should never have to bury their children but they certainly shouldn’t have to bury them because they’ve committed suicide. Suicide is such a desperate call for help and in my opinion indicates that there were no other options. The problem for most parents is how is it that our child, teen or post-teen adult lives and interacts with us every day and we have no idea that they are contemplating suicide? Mental disorder, such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, alcoholism, or drug abuse is often the cause of suicide.[1] Additional stress factors such as difficult interpersonal relationships, long-term sickness or financial worries can also contribute to feelings that “life is no longer worth living”.

According to HelpGuide.org, most suicidal people give signals of their intentions. Below are some warning signs that we can look for to recognize and hopefully prevent suicides with our family, friends and students:

Suicide Warning Signs

Talking   about suicide Any talk   about suicide, dying, or self-harm, such as “I wish I hadn’t been   born,” “If I see you again…” and “I’d be better off   dead.”
Seeking   out lethal means Seeking   access to guns, pills, knives, or other objects that could be used in a   suicide attempt.
Preoccupation   with death Unusual   focus on death, dying, or violence. Writing poems or stories about death.
No hope   for the future Feelings   of helplessness, hopelessness, and being trapped (“There’s no way   out”). Belief that things will never get better or change.
Self-loathing,   self-hatred Feelings   of worthlessness, guilt, shame, and self-hatred. Feeling like a burden   (“Everyone would be better off without me”).
Getting   affairs in order Making out   a will. Giving away prized possessions. Making arrangements for family   members.
Saying   goodbye Unusual or   unexpected visits or calls to family and friends. Saying goodbye to people as   if they won’t be seen again.
Withdrawing   from others Withdrawing   from friends and family. Increasing social isolation. Desire to be left   alone.
Self-destructive   behavior Increased   alcohol or drug use, reckless driving, unsafe sex. Taking unnecessary risks   as if they have a “death wish.”
Sudden   sense of calm A sudden   sense of calm and happiness after being extremely depressed can mean that the   person has made a decision to commit suicide. [2]

As a parent, we don’t understand it when a young person takes his/her life because of hopelessness or frustration. We often wonder where we went wrong. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide is the third-leading cause of death for 15- to 24-year-olds, after accidents and homicide. It’s also thought that at least 25 attempts are made for every completed teen suicide. If you are concerned, here are some prevention tips that you may use:

  1. Speak to that person if you are worried
  2. Respond quickly in a crisis. Determine if the risk is low, moderate or high
  3. Offer professional help & support

Suicide Hotlines and Crisis Support
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – Suicide prevention telephone hotline funded by the U.S. government. Provides free, 24-hour assistance. 1-800-273-TALK (8255). (National Suicide Prevention Lifeline)

National Hopeline Network – Toll-free telephone number offering 24-hour suicide crisis support. 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433). (National Hopeline Network)

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Author & Parenting Coach

www.clynnwilliams.com

Trying to Stay Sane While Raising Your Teen (St. Paul Press, 2010)
The Pampered Prince: Moms Create a GREAT Relationship with Your Son (St. Paul Press, 2012)
Raising Your Daughter Through the Joys, Tears & HORMONES! Available in September, 2013 (220 Communications)


[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suicide

[2] http://www.helpguide.org/mental/suicide_prevention.htm

September 24, 2013 at 11:25 am 2 comments


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