Teenagers! Talk about one of the toughest times to be a parent! I thought I’d tear my hair out! I cursed; I sent them to their rooms. I sent myself to my room!
I’ve sat with my dearest friends while they wept about their teenage children. The rebellion pushed past the parents’ limits: drug use, pregnancy, joining the military (for pacifist parents, that’s a child rebelling), suicide attempts, refusing college.
I remembered these things while listening to two young people talk about their journeys in adolescence. I was at TriCity Family Services' (TCFS) kickoff party for their “Teens Won’t Wait” project last Friday evening.
One teen spoke of having trouble adjusting to a new school and not having friends. His school social worker recommended TCFS.
The other had problems in her family. She’d pretty much exhausted the other resources and was referred to TCFS by staff at a hospital.
As I listened, I thought how brave they were to be speaking in public. It’s clear that both have been helped! They couldn’t say enough good things about TCFS. And the willingness to speak shows how strong both are now.
I talked with the mother of one of the speakers, also overjoyed at the help TCFS provided. The mother was equally open about the troubles in the family and the services TCFS offered all of them.
I met an amazing woman who is a past president of the TCFS Board of Directors. As we were talking, she said she had gotten to know the agency because one of her children needed services. She recalled how the agency helped her and her husband, too. She also underscored the importance of immediate assistance. Waiting would have let the situation worsen.
The “Teens Won’t Wait” project is a TCFS agencywide initiative to increase impact on teenagers in the community and raise the funds necessary to treat and serve more teens than ever in the agency’s history. The services include counseling, group programs, and treatment for eating disorders.
The “Teens Won’t Wait” project needs to raise $200,000 beyond current agency fundraising goals. This is what it will take to ensure that teens in our community get the treatment, services, experiences and support they need.
Teens are impulsive! They have massive amounts of hormones ruling their lives, they aren’t always in control of themselves! Additional service for them improves our community and the lives of our children.
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