I’m listening to a blistering winter storm outside, and realized that it was time for me to say what was on my mind. This is the first blog on my website, and it is interesting how our minds wander…
Even though the words are only being written now, the thoughts have been in my mind for a very long time. As I pondered, back spaced again and again, I came to the realization that we as human beings crave perfection.
I think that’s the same for our children, whether nieces and nephews, children we gave birth to or adopted, or someone’s children we might know. We expect them to be perfect, to achieve our impossibly high standards we have set for them. Then, if they fail, we feel as if we have failed as well.
Social media pushes the bar even higher. Now we not only compete with our perceived notion of perfection against friends and family, we also have to do well with likes and hearts on the Facebook pages and profiles, the Instagram followers and don’t forget the LinkeIn business groups. That’s to name a few.
Did we become so affixed to the idea of being loved by the world that we have forgotten why we are here in the first place? We are in this lifetime for a reason. Some of us are following our paths and learning the lessons, while others struggle. Our children are our teachers, probably more so than what we are theirs.
If they are our teachers, then why is the number of teen suicides so high? Why is the demographic with the highest percentage of mental illness in the ages 14-24 years old, per statistics?
Let’s face it: we have become the perfect parents, the perfect teachers and grandparents and aunts and uncles etc. In fact we are so perfect, that we are missing the signs. The signs of a young adult crying for help.
How could I say this? Because I was that person. I missed the signs, and almost lost my daughter in the process. She was crying for help through her actions, and little snippets of words. I was too busy to be the perfect wife, mother and employee to take notice of my angry, crying for help, teen.
None of us are perfect. Let’s start changing the way we look at our teens. A grunt is a full sentence. A hug is worth a million dollars. When they talk to us, put that tablet or remote away and listen to them, because we are raising tomorrow’s leaders.