Raising teenage boys? Stop screaming and start enjoying the ride ;-)


From Susie’s Little Creations

 

“Whenever I asked boys about planning, their immediate response was to assert that they don’t plan. ‘We don’t plan because plans never work anyway.” “Life’s a roller-coaster, so there’s no point in planning.”

“Girls plan a lot, don’t they?”

“Yeah, but they change their minds, don’t they?”

“Yes, I guess they do.”

“See, waste of time making the decision at the first place!”

“Do you think you’ll ever have a life plan?”

“No”

“So how will your life sort itself out?”

“Oh, that’s easy. I’ll be about 25 and some gorgeous-looking chick will walk past. She’ll have a great plan, so I’ll just hook onto her.”

From http://www.rachelobeauty.com

One question I always asked as we moved towards a discussion about how they managed their academic workloads: if they were given an assignment that was due to be handed in on, say, Tuesday morning, when would they do it?Regardless of academic ability and/or socio-economic status, the answer at this point was invariably “Monday night”, with the occasional “Tuesday morning” thrown in. …

It was a source of great amusement to me when, on some occasions, I pushed a little harder with the students and suggested that if they only did the assignment the night before anyway, regardless of when it was handed out, perhaps the best idea would be to ask their teachers to adopt the practice of giving out assignments overnight, working to the idea that they would have only one night to get it done. It seemed a very logical step to me and one that would mean a significant reduction in levels of stress for those parents who spend their lives trying to compel their sons to start work on the assignment due next week.

Whenever I suggested this idea, however, looks of absolute consternation would cross the faces of the boys. “No, you can’t do that.”

“Why not?”

“Because we need time to think about it!”

From http://lh4.ggpht.com

This unwillingness to plan isn’t all bad news, however. A story told to me by one teacher challenges the view that adolescent males will reach their potential in the classroom only through planning and organised work.

This teacher described the time when he’d explained to a group of senior students that they had only five days left in which to complete their art folios and that if they didn’t manage to do so within that timeframe, they would lose the opportunity to take art the following year…

These were boys who were quite academically capable, but who had shown themselves to be fairly normal adolescent males by working at about 5 per cent of their potential through the year. The teacher had previously taught adolescent girls, who, in his view, tended to work at about 90 per cent of their potential throughout the school year.

Once the teacher had delivered the news of the impending deadline, the boys seemed to accept the challenge and immediately got to work. They literally lived and breathed their art folios for the following five days, spending every hour at the school, taking only occasional breaks to eat and sleep while getting on with the work. In the teacher’s words they went from their previous 5 per cent effort to about 250 per cent. Everything else in their lives fell away and nothing else mattered until their folios were complete. …

From http://www.funnyism.com

The boys also seemed to have been changed for the better and to have become more confident as a result of the experience. They’d been tempered by the challenge and had learned a bit more about who they were and what they were capable of.

So, here’s a thought worthy of consideration at this point: is it possible that this learning might not have occurred and the high standard of work not been reached had they chosen instead to work steadily throughout the year? Is it possible that the inertia frequently displayed by adolescent boys occurs because the challenges being put in front of them aren’t of sufficient depth to merit a real response?… Have we made education a series of relatively small steps because we think that’s what works, when what boys actually want and need are fewer, much bigger steps?”

From ‘He’ll be OK: Growing gorgeous boys into good men
by Celia Lashlie


From http://www.fashionforacure.org

THE END

Lemon Beauty

Anger2
From http://www.zdorovieinfo.ru

“Do you have any lemons?” asked Victoria reading one of the popular women’s magazines.

“Lemons? In the middle of Russian winter? What do you need lemons for?” I wondered.

“Not me, but you. You always were more adventurous. Let’s trial this on you first.”

“Me? Trial what?”

“The best beautifying detox treatment”

“Beautifying you say? Then you need milk not lemons.”

“Why milk?”

“Don’t you remember – Cleopatra used to beautify herself by bathing in milk. I wonder what my folks will think if they spot me in a bathtub full of milk,” I giggled.

From http://www.care2.com

“No, no. Milk is out of fashion now. Besides, how are you going to get so much milk to your bathtub, without even mentioning the cost? Lemons are the way to go now … and apple vinegar,” said Victoria with authority in her voice.

“So are you expecting me to bathe in a bathtub full of apple vinegar juggling lemons?” I laughed.

“No, no. You don’t need a bathtub at all – you can stay in bed watching TV.”

“That sounds better. What about lemons and vinegar?”

“It is very simple – we’ll get you wrapped in a sheet soaked in vinegar, then will cover you with lots of warm blankets. You’ll need to stay like that for a few hours drinking a cup of hot lemon drink every ten minutes. I’ll get the drinks ready for you.”

“You must be joking! Where did you get these crazy ideas from?” I laughed.

“Not crazy at all. Look at this article – all Hollywood stars are doing that.”

“They must be growing lots of lemons in Hollywood then!”

“Come on. You try that first and then I’ll have a go,” said Victoria.

From http://janasjournal.com

I completely forgot about this conversation, when Victoria came to my place with a bag of lemons.

“Look, I’ve spent all my monthly income on these lemons. You surely can’t say no to such sacrifice. No one else is at home – perfect timing. You go first. Where do you have spare sheets?”

“That’s not my cup of tea, Victoria,” I tried to object.

“What tea? You won’t be getting any tea – only lemon drinks. Come on, it won’t take long – only a few hours.”

Ignoring my objections, Victoria pulled out an old sheet and soaked it in apple vinegar. Five minutes later I was all naked, wrapped in the stinky wet sheet, trying to warm up under a pile of blankets. Victoria turned the TV on.

“Enjoy while I get the first lemon drink ready,” she said disappearing in the kitchen.

“Enjoy! Do you really think it is enjoyable to be wrapped in that stinky sheet?” I shouted to her.

“Beauty requires sacrifices,” responded Victoria with authority in her voice, bringing me the first cup of hot lemon drink.

From http://www.coconutmagic.com

Lemon drink was nice and it did help me to warm up a bit. The second drink was OK. After the third cup I had enough.

“Look, I had enough of these lemon drinks.”

“Beauty requires sacrifices,” repeated Victoria. “Still 10 more cups to go”.

“Ten more cups!!!”

“Yep, wait here, I’ll make another cup of lemon drink,” she said disappearing in the kitchen.

After three more cups I could not tolerate this any longer.

“Victoria, I can’t drink it anymore. I’m bursting.”

“Hm, that’s a bit of a problem. This article does not say anything about that. You’ve done one hour only. You need to wait for another hour. Beauty requires sacrifices,” she said disappearing in the kitchen.

девушка с лимономFrom http://krasotavnytri.ru

After three more cups I could not wait any longer. As soon as Victoria disappeared in the kitchen to make another cup of lemon drink, I jumped out of bed and, still wrapped in the wet sheet, rushed into the hall to get to the toilet.

To my horror, right at that moment the front door flew open and my brother came in with all his mates from engineering Uni. Without a word, I dashed past them into the bathroom and locked the door. A few minutes later the whole flat burst with roaring laughter: the lads discovered the copy of the women’s magazine with that ‘beautifying’ article….


From http://heavenonearthindia.wordpress.com

That night dad joined us for dinner.

“You look particularly beautiful tonight,” he said to me with a wink, “Would you like another lemon?” he asked, taking a lemon out of his pocket…

I could not stand lemons for the rest of the year and women’s magazines – for the rest of my life after that day.

From http://pikabu.ru

THE END

Raising Teen Daughters: Empathy vs Sympathy

From http://www.buzzle.com

Can we ever understand teenage girls if even such experienced psychologist Nigel Latta openly admitted in his Politically Incorrect Guide to Teenagers, that he “didn’t understand the physics of the Girl-niverse”? “If a boy goes off the rail,” continues Latta, “he generally drinks alcohol, takes some drugs, gets into some petty crime and hits a few people. When girls go off the rails, they have a capacity to create degrees of chaos that are hard to believe. When girls go off the rails, the earth shifts on its axis”.

From http://lifetoheryears.com/50rules

So how can fathers help their daughters to go through that complicated stage in life? How can fathers understand their teenage daughters, those beautiful fairy princesses who suddenly turn into demonic uncontrollable monsters?

A few days ago I came across a story that touched my heart: a story of a father, who not only made an effort to understand his teenage daughter, but possibly rescued his troubled daughter from years of despair and near suicide. This story is provided below.


From http://www.ufunk.net

“I know of a couple with three grown children. This is a good family… The father did a good deal of traveling for his work while his daughter and two boys were growing up His relationship with them was sound and safe, but he just wasn’t around very much. Everything was fine until his teenage daughter started having behavioral problems at school and then with the law.

Each time she got in trouble, her anxious, time-conscious father would sit down with her and try to talk through the problem. They would go around on the same issues every time: “I’m too fat, I’m too ugly.” “No, you are not, you’re beautiful to me.” “You have to say that, you’re my dad.” “I wouldn’t say it if it wasn’t true.” “Yes, you would” “Do you think I’d lie to you?” And the discussion would turn to the question of the father’s honesty. Or he would tell her a story from his own youth, like the one about how he grew up with skinny arms and shoulders and everyone made fun of him. “Is that supposed to make me feel better?” she would say.

From http://www.dongallagherllc.com

Things would calm down, he’d leave town, and the cycle would start again. He was on a trip when his wife rang him to say their daughter had disappeared. Frantically, he caught a plane home and the family fretted for days while the search went on. At last she turned up in a runaway shelter in another city, and the parents collected her.

That night he and his wife talked things through. “I do not know what to do about her,” he confessed. His wife replied, “You might try listening to her.” “What do you mean? I listen to her constantly.”

His wife gave him a half smile. “Go and listen to her. Don’t talk. Don’t talk. Just listen.”

mate preferenceFrom http://www.huffingtonpost.com

He sat down with his daughter, who was still silent, and asked her, “Would you like to talk?” She shook her head, but he stayed where he was, silent as well. It was getting dark before she finally spoke. “I just don’t want to live anymore.”

Alarmed, he fought the urge to protest this and said softly, “You don’t want to live anymore.” This was followed by about five minutes of silence – the longest five minutes in his life, he later said.

“I’m just not happy, Dad. I don’t like anything about myself. I want it to be over.”

“You’re not happy at all,” he breathed.

The girl began to cry. In fact, she began to sob intensely, trying to talk at the same time, words flowing like a flood. It was as if a dam had burst. She talked into the early morning hours, he said hardly ten words, and the next day things looked hopeful. Where before he was giving her only sympathy, at last he had discovered empathy.

From http://www.gurl.com

This was only the first “psychological airing” of many over the next few hard adolescent years, but the young girl is now a woman, calm and confident in herself and her father’s love for her. That he would seek her out, that he would value the outpourings of her heart instead of imposing his version of reality on her, helped give her a robust foundation for life.

From http://www.sheknows.com

When tensions are high and confidence is low, when the next step doesn’t look clear at all, when a wall has gone up, try an experiment with empathy.

  • Go to the other side and say, “You see things differently. I need to listen to you.”
  • Give full attention. Don’t multitask while you’re listening. Don’t judge, evaluate, analyse, advise, toss in your footnotes, critique, or quarrel.
  • Be quiet. You don’t have to provide an answer, a verdict, a solution, or a “fix”. Free yourself from all that pressure. Just sit back and listen.
  • Speak only to keep the flow going. Say things like “Tell me more,” or “ Go on.”
  • Pay close attention to emotions. Affirm feelings.
  • Remember, you are listening to a story. When you go to a movie, you don’t interrupt and argue with the story and talk back to the screen. You’re involved, your sense of reality is suspended, you’re almost is a trance.
  • Be ready to learn. If you’re open, you’ll gain insights that will lighten up your own mind and complement your own perspective.
  • Show some gratitude. It’s a great compliment to be invited into the mind and heart of another human being…”

From “The 3rd alternative” by Stephen R Covey

Related posts:

THE END

Parenting Teenagers: Finding Sense in Nonsense

Teens
From http://www.motivationalplus.com

‘The Politically Incorrect Guide to Teenagers” by Nigel Latta is one of my favourite books on parenting teenagers. I’ve read this book together with my teenager and it helped both of us to understand each other better. However there are a few points in Nigel’s book that do not feel right to me. One of them is about ‘trivializing the nonsense which comes from many kid’s mouths as they’re trying to find their own way in the world.’

I can partially share that view when it comes to emotional outbursts caused my tiredness or hormonal changes. However I would not ‘trivialize’ teenagers’ attempts to question everything around them and come up with their own way of thinking, no matter how ‘nonsensical’ it might seem. I would not be scared to get into a debate. 😉


From http://www.motivationalplus.com

As an example, if a teenage girl comes up with an idea, that running away at 16 and having a baby would make her life more ‘independent’ and ‘enjoyable’, I would not ‘trivialize’ or ‘dismiss’ that. Instead, I would attempt to have a good chat with her, trying to understand why she is feeling like that and discuss the potential consequences. If a teenager comes up with something like that, there must be a ‘trigger’ in the environment she lives in. Lack of attention or understanding at home? Too much control or complete lack of it? Anything else?


From http://www.aynla.org

Similarly,  if a teenage girl is thinking of becoming a prostitute or porno star for glamorous lifestyle or to pay her University fees, rolling eyes, dismissing or ignoring that ‘idea’ won’t help. Try to investigate why she is thinking that way. Was it the story of a Duke University Porno Star that made her think that way? Or an article in a mainstream publication describing the ‘pleasurable’ side of that trade? Or one of the many blog posts that calls for prostitutes and porno stars to be ‘respected’ for their ‘pleasurable’ trade. Why would not they be respected by the society for something they ‘absolutely love’ doing? After all, we all know by now that girls do enjoy sex and sex work is now legally recognized in some parts of the world. What’s wrong then with earning money by doing something so ‘enjoyable’ and ‘pleasurable’?


From http://www.newyorkdailysun.com/brazil-drops-prostitute-promotion/

Once we know the source of the ‘ideas’, it is time to do some research on whether that option is really ‘that glamorous’ and ‘pleasurable’ as your teenager might think.

First of all, let’s find out whether sex workers do ‘enjoy’ their trade. As Google kindly points out, we are not the only ones wondering about that. Below are a few responses from Yahoo!Answers-UK:

  • ‘Who cares about THEM?’
  • ‘No, they’re just after the money’
  • ‘Most of them are man-haters’
  • ‘Few are like ‘Belle de Jour’. Most are in highly dangerous situations on the streets selling themselves for a piitance to feed their drug habit.’
  • ‘no one enjoys HAVING to service loads of guys they don’t like, don’t find attractive, probably treat them like rubbish, and probably are too stinky/wierd/inadequate to be able to have sex with a regular woman without paying for it!’
  • ‘Most prostitutes don’t do it for the sex, but as a way of making fast money. Usually a life of abuse behind them, they lose any sense of self worth’
  • ‘You would be surprised if you knew how much prostitutes hated their clients.’

From http://www.vice.com

The majority of responses on Yahoo!Answers-international is pretty similar:

  • ‘Very few do. It’s a grind, just like any other job, except there is always the danger of running into a maniac trick. Most prostitutes just do their best to block out the act and pray the guy climaxes quickly. Think about it: would you enjoy a stinky, slobbery, drunken inebriate all over you?’
  • ‘Nope, most of them actually become numb to it. They begin to view sex as a very emotionless thing. Most prostitutes will do anything but kiss on the mouth.’

Poverty and Sin - The Prostitute #1From http://napkindad.com

OK, it looks like there is not much ‘enjoyment’ for most workers in that trade. How about respect? As reflected in some answers provided above, the majority of sex workers do not seem to get much respect either. Even their clients often treat them like  ‘rubbish’ in spite of all their ‘hard work’. Why is that?

To answer that question, let’s have a closer look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs:

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Chart
From http://timvandevall.com

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is often represented as a pyramid, with the lowest or most fundamental needs at the bottom. He distinguished 5 types of needs:

  1. Physiological needs such as food, water and sleep
  2. Safety needs such as security of the body, health and property
  3. Social needs such as friendship, family, belonging and identity
  4. Esteem needs such as recognition, self-esteem, confidence, justice and respect
  5. Growth or self-actualization needs such as creativity, problem solving, art, beauty, personal fulfilment and freedom.

The assumption of the hierarchy is that the lower needs have to be met first, and are preconditions for the realization of the higher needs, although a temporary insufficiency in the lower levels will not undo the aspirations of the higher levels.

Sex is one of our basic physiological needs, like food, water, sleep, breathing and excretion. Meeting our physiological needs is important for our survival. If we are starving, can’t breath or are bursting to go to the toilet, all the other needs will be temporarily put on hold. However do we ‘respect’ the air we breath or the water we drink? Do we ‘respect’ the toilet bowl we are using? Sex trade clearly fits into that category and therefore sex workers usually get no more respect than toilet bowls.


From http://www.beachcitieshomesblog.com

However sexual intimacy with a loving partner is much higher up the hierarchy, on the same level with friendship, family, love. This level is about belonging, being accepted, loved and cared about. If we are looking for enjoyment  and respect in sex, we should be able to find it on that level. Not surprisingly, sexual intimacy with a loving and understanding partner is often rated much higher on the ‘enjoyment’ scale, then casual sex, as illustrated by a few comments from Reddit provided below:

  • ‘Over time we come to learn how to push one another’s buttons in just the right way (something that does not happen in casual relationship)’
  • ‘Being in love adds a layer of intimacy that can really intensify sex. It transforms the act from fun sweaty exercise to an expression of love, all tangled up in all the emotions inherent in a loving relationship’
  • ‘I think it’s an undeniable fact that sex is better with romantic chemistry’
  • ‘I’ve had sex with near-strangers, and it’s kind of awkward.’ While ‘Sex with someone you love is transcendent. Sometimes, in the middle I think: “Wow, this is really happening. I’m not hallucinating, this is really happening and to me.’

Angel5
From www.photosight.ru

If a teenager is still not convinced, let her read a few stories from the life of prostitutes, such as:

And get ready for many more debates to come while your young people are going through crucial teenage years 😉

Teenagers! i like to have humor cause i am raising one right now

 From http://www.pinterest.com 

THE END

Are You Micromanaging Your Teen?

From http://www.examiner.com

Do you find yourself micromanaging your teenager’s life? It goes something like this: “Did you take a shower?” “Did you study for your Spanish test?” “Have you figured out whether you’re going to the concert this weekend?” “Do I have to get the concert tickets for you?” “Shouldn’t you have left by now?”

When you have a deadline at work, who is responsible for meeting that deadline? When you have a meeting you need to attend, who is responsible for getting you to that meeting? How did you learn how to meet your deadlines and get to your meetings on time?

From http://news.byu.edu/

It is no different for our teenagers. If they don’t have a reminder to take a shower, they will get stinky and their friends will make fun of them. When that happens, chances are they won’t forget (or neglect out of spite) to take a shower again.

If your teenager doesn’t make the necessary phone calls she needs to make to see if everyone’s going to the concert over the weekend, she’ll probably end up sitting home bored to death while all of her friends are out having fun. Chances are, next time her friends start discussing an upcoming concert, she’ll be on top of the planning.

From http://www.lafayettecountyhealth.org

As Wendy Sheppard points out, a teenager’s job is to learn how to be independent – how to do things for himself. His job is to find the resources to figure things out if he can’t do it himself.

Our job is to support him through this process and help him with things he truly isn’t ready for.

Therefore, instead of hovering like a helicopter over your teen, try ‘submarine parenting’. As Todd Kestin explains, submarine parenting means staying out of sight under the surface letting the kids manage their lives as things come up. It’s keeping the proverbial periscope up, so parents are aware how things are going with their teens, how their decisions are turning out, and being available to step in as needed. By maintaining this stance in their teens’ lives, parents empower them to work their way out of problems, issues, decision-making, etc.

Make a periscopeFrom http://www.planet-science.com

Submarine parents practice “parenting with intention.” Purposely backing off but keeping a hidden eye on their kids’ progress. Purposely giving them the room they need to succeed and to fail and bounce back again.

So what are some ways to use “submarine parenting” with your own kids? Here are five ways to take action with your teen by parenting with intention:

1. Back off on purpose.

2. Let your teen make his own decisions.

3. Talk to your teen with respect,

4. Model healthy behavior for your teen to follow.

5. Let go of the power struggle.

 Be More Independent As a Teen Girl Step 1.jpgFrom http://www.wikihow.com

Lippincott and Deutsch, authors of 7 Things Your Teenager Won’t Tell You, urge parents to simplify their expectations into three “rules of play:”

1. Stay Safe
2. Show Respect
3. Keep in Touch

What happens in a teen’s life – from violating curfew to doing homework to confronting drugs and alcohol – can fall under the above-mentioned three “rules of play.


From http://studentcareercoach.wordpress.com

As Mike Duran points out, “Teenagers / Young Adults require CONSULTATION and ADVICE – This is the stage where our kids are (or should be) full-fledged managers of their own lives. By now, they should understand moral parameters and societal obligations. We respect their growing independence by posturing ourselves as consultants and advisers, not managers. As such, they are free to take or leave our advice. (Of course, this does not let them off the hook regarding behavior or responsibility, but it affirms their autonomy and our waning authority.)”


From http://www.southbaytreatment.com

And if you still find yourself micromanaging your teen, lighten up and get your own life 😉

From http://www.petebarrett.com

Resources:

THE END

Th1rteen R3asons Why

Excerpts from the book “Th1rteen R3asons Why” by Jay Asher

13-reasons-whyFrom Thirteen Reasons Why

Hello, boys and girls. Hannah Baker here. Live and in stereo…. No return engagements. No encore. And this time, absolutely no requests… I hope you are ready, because I’m about to tell you the story of my life. More specifically, why my life ended. And if you’re listening to these tapes, you’re one of the reasons why… 

Reason 1: Justin Foley

JustinF
From 
pixton.com

Every night for a week I woke up in the exact same about-to-be kissed spot. But now, Justin, I would finally be meeting you…. Okay, who out there wants to know my very first thought during my very first kiss? Here it is: Somebody’s been eating chilidogs. I’m sorry. It wasn’t that bad, but it was the first thing I thought…

I was so anxious about what kind of kiss it would be – because my friends back home described so many types… And that’s it. Wait. Stop. Don’t rewind. There’s no need to go back because you didn’t miss a thing. Let me repeat myself. That… is … all… that… happened. Why, did you hear something else? …. Oh. So sorry. You wanted something sexier, didn’t you? … Well, what did you want to hear? Because I’ve heard so many stories that I don’t know which one is the most popular. But I do know which is the least popular. The truth…

So thank you, Justin. Sincerely. My very first kiss was wonderful… But then you started bragging. A week went by and I heard nothing. But eventually… the rumours reached me. And everyone knows you can’t disprove a rumour…

Reason 2: Alex Standall 

Alex1
From pixton.com

I remember sitting in second period the morning your list came out. Ms. Strumm obviously had an amazing weekend because she did absolutely no prep work whatsoever. She had us watch one of her famously dull documentaries…To me, the narrator’s voice was nothing more than background noise. Well, the narrator’s voice… and the whispers.

When I looked up, the whispers stopped. Any eyes looking at me turned away. But I saw that paper getting passed around. A single sheet making its way up and down the aisles. Eventually, it made its way to the desk behind me…

I tilted my head so I could read the upside-down title of the paper: FRESHMAN CLASS – WHO’S HOT/WHO’S NOT…

Everyone knows Worst Ass in the Freshman Class was a lie… But I’m sure no one cared why Jessica ended up on that side of your list, Alex… Well, no one except you… and me… and Jessica makes three…

You needed a name to put down opposite Jessica’s. And since everyone at school already had a perverted image of me after Justin’s little number, I was the perfect choice, wasn’t I? And the snowball keeps a-rolling. Thanks, Justin….

The day your list came out wasn’t too traumatic. I survived. I knew it was a joke… But what happens when someone says you have the best ass in the freshman class? Let me tell you, Alex, because you’ll never know. It gives people – some people – the go-ahead to treat you like you’re nothing but that specific body part…

Reason 3: Jessica Davis

Jessica
From Thirteen Reasons Why

I still can’t believe that I lost my best friend. I’m so disappointed that she thinks these rumors are true !

Just because of this stupid boy … Alex. It all began with a meeting at Monet’s Garden where Jessica and I first saw him. This idiot wrote a HOT – and NOT-List. He put me on the HOT – and Jessica on the NOT-side, just to make her jealous. How can a person be so mean ? Well, but everybody knows that Jessica is so much prettier than I ! And wow … I was shocked when I heard that somebody spread rumours about Alex and me. The whole school thinks that we made out, Jessica too ! Like I said, these are just rumours. They are N.O.T true. But Jessica got so angry. Imagine, she hit and scratched me in my face, so I will have an ugly scar ! And I thought she was a good friend. But I thought wrong …

Reason 4: Tyler Down 

Tyler
From Thirteen Reasons

I feel so sorry for you, Tyler.  I do. Everyone else on these tapes, so far, must feel a little relieved. They came off as liars or jerks or insecure people lashing out at others. But your story, Tyler… it’s kind of creepy… I’m trying to understand the excitement of staring through someone’s bedroom window. Watching someone who doesn’t know they’re being watched. Trying to catch them in the act of… What were you trying to catch me in the act of, Tyler? And were you disappointed? Or pleasantly surprised?…

Why didn’t you leave me alone, Tyler? My house. My bedroom. They were supposed to be safe for me. Safe from everything outside. But you were the one who took that away….

So how important is your security, Tyler? What about your privacy? May be it’s not as important to you as it was for me, but that’s not for you to decide.

Reason 5: Courtney Crimsen

CourtneyFrom 13 Reasons Why

Courtney Crimsen. What a pretty name. And yes, a very pretty girl, as well. Pretty hair. Pretty smile. Perfect skin…. You’re definitely one of the most popular girls in school. And you…are…just…so…sweet. Right? Wrong…

Thanks for inventing and spreading a story about sex toys in my dresser…. And the snowball keeps a-rolling.

Reason 6: Marcus Cooley

Image2From Thirteen Reasons Why

When Marcus came into Rosie’s, he was not alone. No, Marcus came into Rosie’s with a plan. Part of that plan was to move us away from the counter to a booth near the back. Near the pinball machines. With me on the inside. Me, sandwiched between him… and a wall…

And that’s when his hand touched my knee. That’s when I knew…. I stopped laughing….

“Stop it,” I said. And I know you heard me…

“Don’t worry,” you said, And may be you knew your time was short because your hand immediately slid up from my thigh. All the way up. So I rammed both of my hands into your side, throwing you to the floor…

Anyway, you left. You didn’t storm out. Just called me a tease, loud enough for everyone to hear, and walked out…

The next day, Marcus, I decided something. I decided to find out how people at school might react if one of the students never came back…

Reason 7: Zach Dempsey

ZachFrom Th1rteen R3asons Why

Today was an awful day! I always need to cry when I think of this situation, this most childish of ways to get back at me.

Zach, that stupid guy of my school, stole my notes of encouragement. I still can’t believe it, but it’s true. He took away my last hope and because I’m going through that hard time I really need these little notes. They were at least a small light in my world of darkness.

Now I feel lonelier than ever even because of this discussion in class. Oh, I haven’t told you that yet, have I?

Well, because I was very desperate and hopeless (I’m still desperate) I wrote a small anonymous message to Mrs. Bradley, where I mentioned that I’m thinking of committing suicide.

And today, when she opened the discussion my classmates said, that whoever wrote that just wants attention. I was very offended and I couldn’t understand why they didn’t care. But now… maybe they are right. Maybe I just want people to know I’m thinking of killing myself so they would tell me to stop. I already hear a voice inside my head which tells me to stop, but I can’t.

However, I’m still not sure whether Zach stole my notes because he thought I turned him down at Rosie’s. But he must have understood something wrong, right? I just ignored him and said nothing. I didn’t give him a reason for doing something that bad.

It’s horrible to see how I withdraw into myself. I really don’t want to put the blame on someone. But if they don’t stop killing myself I can’t guarantee anything…

Reason 8: Ryan Shaver 

HannahFrom Thirteen Reasons Why

I loved poetry. I missed it. And one day, after several weeks, I decided to back to it. I decided to use poetry to make myself happy. Happy poems. Bright and happy sunshiny poems…

They taught a free course called Poetry: To Love Life. They promised to teach not only how to love poetry, but through poetry, how to better love ourselves. Sign me up!…

See, someone else was in that group…. Ryan Shaver, the editor of our school’s very own Lost-N-Found Gazette…Ryan’s semiannual collection of items found lying around campus. Like a love letter tossed under a desk, never discovered by its intended love…. Photographs that fell out of binders… he scanned them too. Some people may wonder how Ryan found to many interesting items to scan. Did he really find them at all? Or did he steal them? I asked him that very question after one of our poetry meetings. And he swore that everything he printed was found purely by chance…

But guess what? My Poem? He stole it… It was never a lost poem, Ryan. And you never fount it, so it did not belong in your collection.  But in your collection is exactly where other people found it…

Do you know that Mr. Porter said before handing out my poem? He said that reading a poem by an unknown member of our school was the same as reading a classic poem by a dead poet. That’s right – a dead poet. … Did you have any clue at all it was me? Yes, some of you did. Ryan must have told someone…Some even wrote parodies of my poem, reading them to me in the hopes of getting under my skin…

Reason 9: Clay Jensen

Clay
From pixton.com

Clay, honey, your name does not belong on this list…. It seems like you could know me. Like you could understand anything I told you. And the more we spoke, I knew why. The same things excited us. The same things concerned us. I wanted to tell you everything. And that hurt because some things were too scary. Some things even I didn’t understand. How could I tell someone – someone I was really talking to for the first time – everything I was thinking? I couldn’t. It was too soon. Or maybe it was too late…. Thing had gone too far by then. My mind was set. Not on ending my life. Not yet. It was set on floating through school. On never being close to anyone. That was my plan.

Reason 10: Justin Foley and Bryce Walker
Bryce
From pixton.com

Soon after Clay left, the couple from the couch walked into the bedroom. Actually, stumbled into the bedroom is more accurate… I thought she was acting drunk… Unfortunately, it wasn’t an act. She was smashed… I was still on the floor, my back against the far side of the bed, and it was dark… I thought he would tuck her in and shut the door behind him as he left… Instead of leaving, he started kissing her…. He didn’t take advantage of the situation. He wanted to. He tried for the longest time to get a reaction out of her. “Are you still awake? Do you want me to take you to the bathroom? Are you gonna puke?” This girl wasn’t totally passed out. She grunted and groaned a bit. It dawned on him – finally – that she wasn’t in a romantic mood and probably wouldn’t be for a while. So he tucked her in and said he’d check on her in a bit. Then he left…

When you left that room, you took up post right outside. And I let go of the bed and started walking toward that sliver of light, not sure what I’d say to you when I opened the door. But halfway there, two more shoes came into view… and I stopped…. The door opened, but you pulled it back and said, “No. Let her rest.” … Your friend was convincing you to let him in that room. The bedroom door opened again. But again, you pulled it shut. And you tried to make a joke of it. “Trust me,” you said, “she won’t move. She’ll just lay there.”

And what was his response? What was it? What was his reasoning for you to step aside and let him in that room?… I could not believe it… I collapsed into the closet….

It’s Bryce… Bryce Walker was in that room. No one heard him walking across the room… Getting on the bed. The bedsprings screaming under his weight. No one heard a thing…

Justin, baby, I’m not blaming you entirely. We’re in this one together. We both could have stopped it. Either one of us. We could have saved her. … This girl had two chances. And both of us let her down… He raped a girl…

So what do you think of him now, Justin? Do you hate him? Your friend that raped her, is he still your friend? Yes, but why? It must be a denial. It has to be. Sure, he’s always had a temper. Sure, he goes through girls like used underwear. But he’s always been a good friend to you. And the more you hang out with him, the more he seems like the same old guy from before, right? And if he acts like the same guy, then he couldn’t possibly have done anything wrong. Which means that you didn’t do anything wrong, either…

Reason 11: Jenny Kurtz 

JennyFrom Thirteen Reasons Why

Jenny asked if I needed a ride home, and I almost laughed. Was it so obvious? Did I look that terrible? So I looped my arm in hers and she helped me… So, Jenny, you led me to your car… You held me arm with such tenderness as you lowered me into the passenger seat. You buckled me in, got in your seat, then we left…What happened next, I’m not entirely sure. I wasn’t paying attention because , in your car, I felt secure…

And then … it hit…. The front wheel on my side slammed into and jumped the curb. A wooden post smacked into your front bumper and snapped back like a toothpick. A Stop sign fell backward in front of your headlights. It caught under your car and you screamed and slammed on the brakes…

Your door opened and I watched you walk to the front of your car… And what were the first words you said when you got back in the car? “Well, that sucks.” Then you put your key in the ignition and … I stopped you. I couldn’t let you drive away…

Again, I told you to park the car. We’d get a ride home from someone at the party… “Park it,” I said. “Please.” And then you told me to get out…. I asked if I could use your phone. … “We need to at least tell someone about the sign,” I said. You kept your eyes straight ahead. “They’ll trace it. They can trace phone calls, Hannah.” Then you started up the car… and you got away….

You found your way home in one piece, Jenny. But that wasn’t he problem. The sign was knocked down, and that was the problem…. It was raining. And someone was trying to deliver his pizzas on time. And someone else, headed in the opposite direction, was turning. There was no Stop sign on that corner. Not on that night. And one of them, one of the drivers, died…

Reason 12: Bryce Walker

Bruce
From Th1rteen R3asons Why

After being shut in for so long, I decided to catch a breath of fresh air…. My plan was to just walk by the place… And then, someone called my name. Over the tall wooden fence,… a head poked up. And whose head would that be? Bryce Walker’s…

“Come on, join us,” he said. “We’re sobering up.”…

I walked across the wet grass and pulled a latch on the fence, popping the gate open a few inches. And behind it, the source of the steam… a redwood hot tub…

I descended into the water. It felt so relaxing. So comforting…. I opened my eyes and looked up at the night sky. Through the steam, the whole world seemed like a dream…

Bryce slid over… slowly… across the underwater bench. And his shoulder rested against mine….

Bryce’s words were soft, an obvious attempt at romance. “Hannah Baker,” he said.

Everyone knows how you are, Bryce. Everyone knows what you do. But I, for a record, did nothing to stop you…

When you were done, Bryce, I got out of the hot tub and walked two houses away. The night was over. I was done.

Reason 13: Mr. Porter

Mr Porter
From pixton.com

I’m giving live one more chance. And this time, I’m getting help. I’m asking for help because I cannot do this alone. I’ve tried that…

Mr. Porter, let’s see how you do…

–       I’m glad that you’re here, Hannah. So tell me, when you leave this office, how do you want things to be different for you?

–       You mean, how can you help?

–       Yes.

–       I guess I … I don’t know…

–       Well, what do you need right now that you’re not getting? Let’s start there.

–       I need it to stop.

–       You need what to stop?

–       I need everything to stop. People. Life.

–       Hannah, do you know what you just said? You said you wanted life to stop, Hannah. Your life? Is that what you meant to say, Hannah? Those are very serious words, you know.

–       I know. They are. I’m sorry….

–       So what happened, Hannah? How did we get here?

–       We? Or how did I get here?

–       You, Hannah. How did you get to this point? I know you can’t sum it all up. It’s the snowball effect, am I right?… It’s one thing on top of another. It’s too much, isn’t it? It’s too hard…

–       You want me to move beyond this… I think I’m done here… I got what I came for…

–       I think there’s more we can talk about, Hannah.

–       No, I think we’ve figured it out. I need to move on and get over it.

–       Not get over it, Hannah. But sometimes there’s nothing left to do but move on.

–       You are right. I know.

–       Hannah, I don’t understand why you’re in such a hurry to leave.

–       Because I need to get on with things, Mr. Porter. If nothing’s going to change, then I’d better get on with it, right?

–       Hannah, what are you talking about?

–       I’m talking about my life, Mr. Porter.

–       Hannah, wait.

I’m walking down the hall. His door is closed behind me. It’s staying closed. He’s not coming. He’s letting me go. I think I’ve made myself very clear, but no one’s stepping forward to stop me. A lot of you cared, just not enough. And that… that is what I needed to find out. And I did find out. And I’m sorry…

im-sorryFrom Thirteen Reasons Why

* * *

About
From KidsHealth

The reasons behind a teen’s suicide or attempted suicide can be complex. Although suicide is relatively rare among children, the rate of suicides and suicide attempts increases tremendously during adolescence.

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.

Suicide rates differ between boys and girls. Girls think about and attempt suicide about twice as often as boys, and tend to attempt suicide by overdosing on drugs or cutting themselves. Yet boys die by suicide about four times as often girls, perhaps because they tend to use more lethal methods, such as firearms, hanging, or jumping from heights.

It can be hard to remember how it felt to be a teen, caught in that gray area between childhood and adulthood. Sure, it’s a time of tremendous possibility but it also can be a period of stress and worry. There’s pressure to fit in socially, to perform academically, and to act responsibly.

Adolescence is also a time of sexual identity and relationships and a need for independence that often conflicts with the rules and expectations set by others.

Teens going through major life changes (parents’ divorce, moving, a parent leaving home due to military service or parental separation, financial changes) and those who are victims of bullying are at greater risk of suicidal thoughts.

Warning Signs

Suicide among teens often occurs following a stressful life event, such as problems at school, a breakup with a boyfriend or girlfriend, the death of a loved one, a divorce, or a major family conflict.

Teens who are thinking about suicide might:

  • talk about suicide or death in general
  • give hints that they might not be around anymore
  • talk about feeling hopeless or feeling guilty
  • pull away from friends or family
  • write songs, poems, or letters about death, separation, and loss
  • start giving away treasured possessions to siblings or friends
  • lose the desire to take part in favorite things or activities
  • have trouble concentrating or thinking clearly
  • experience changes in eating or sleeping habits
  • engage in risk-taking behaviors
  • lose interest in school or sports

What Can Parents Do?

1. Watch and Listen

It’s important to try to keep the lines of communication open and express your concern, support, and love. If your teen confides in you, show that you take those concerns seriously. A fight with a friend might not seem like a big deal to you in the larger scheme of things, but for a teen it can feel immense and consuming. It’s important not to minimize or discount what your teen is going through, as this can increase his or her sense of hopelessness.

If your teen doesn’t feel comfortable talking with you, suggest a more neutral person, such as another relative, a clergy member, a coach, a school counselor, or your child’s doctor.

2. Ask Questions

Some parents are reluctant to ask teens if they have been thinking about suicide or hurting themselves. Some fear that by asking, they will plant the idea of suicide in their teen’s head.

It’s always a good idea to ask, even though doing so can be difficult. Sometimes it helps to explain why you’re asking. For instance, you might say: “I’ve noticed that you’ve been talking a lot about wanting to be dead. Have you been having thoughts about trying to kill yourself?”

3. Get Help

If you learn that your child is thinking about suicide, get help immediately. Also remember that ongoing conflicts between a parent and child can fuel the fire for a teen who is feeling isolated, misunderstood, devalued, or suicidal. Get help to air family problems and resolve them in a constructive way.

From About Teen Suicide

Poster
From Take a Stand

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Giggling your way to your teens

“They may push you away, but deep down your kids still need to know you love them. So don’t get hurt — get closer by learning these teen-friendly ways to show you care.”

Sarah Mahoney

dad-and-daighter
From How Fathers Influence Daughters

When your kids are little, parenthood is pretty much a contact sport — a nonstop marathon of smooching and snuggling. Fast-forward to their teen years, and it’s an entirely different story. Take my 14-year-old, for example. I used to put his sweet little baby toes in my mouth just to make him giggle. Now he not only has a pair of huge hairy man feet, but all of our tender moments — including those times he rests his chin on the top of my head, just to show how tall he is-happen entirely on his terms. And what about his 16-year-old sister? Sure, she’ll occasionally play footsie with me while we watch House. But if I hug her uninvited, she turns into a human surfboard.

Experts say we shouldn’t let those cold shoulders fool us. Kids not only want us to reach out to them, but also need constant reminders that we care…

When your kid starts insisting you keep your distance — in my house, that involves eye rolling, mock gagging or the ultra-offensive “eww, get away from me!” — relax. You can show your teens you love them while still giving them space.

1. Find affection alternatives. Kashurba suggests parents, especially dads, modify the ways they show affection to their teens. Hugging daughters can become embarrassing. Chances are you’ve already figured out that rumpling her hair is out of the question, so experiment. Try an occasional back scratch while she’s at the computer. Games — whether it’s touch football or flicking each other with wet dishrags — offer parents a chance to stay physical with both boys and girls.

2. Chill their way. Flop down on the couch next to your teen, even if it means you have to endure MTV’s “The Hills”. You might not be able to hug it out, but sitting shoulder-to-shoulder and sharing a laugh can be the next best thing.

3. Pick your moments. Your teen may brush off most of your overtures, but there are always unexpected times when she feels especially vulnerable — overwhelmed by calculus, for example, or after a fight with her best friend. Seize the moment. She might not ask for it, but she’d really love a reassuring arm around the shoulder.

4. Remember, showing up matters most. When raising teens, “being actively engaged in their daily lives trumps everything,” says Cauffman. That means rooting from the bleachers at basketball games, eating dinner together most nights, and really listening — on their terms, not yours — without judgment.

5.  Get your sense of humour back and share lots of giggles. In  “He’ll be OK: Growing gorgeous boys into good men” Celia Lashlie noted that a common theme of the conversations she had with many of the students was their lack of what they considered a real relationship with their dads. “What’s the one thing about your dad you would change if you could?’ she asked the students.

“Time and again the answer came: ‘He’d get his sense of humour back.’

Not “He’d get a sense of humour’ but ‘He’d get his sense of humour back‘.  … You’re great with your little fellows: you roll around on the floor, you fight, you have a lot of fun. And then the moment comes when a wee switch goes down in the back of the male brain, and you say to yourselves, ‘OK, I need to be a proper father now.’

So you stand up ready and willing to be a proper father and meanwhile your teen is looking around thinking, ‘I wonder where my dad went, because this grumpy old bastard sure isn’t him.’…”

(From 7 Ways to Get Closer to Your Teen and “He’ll be OK: Growing gorgeous boys into good men” )

father_daughter_momentsFrom The Dad Effect on Teen Self Esteem 

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