Sue Scheff: School Violence

natlyouthviolenceSchool violence  hit Coral Gables, Florida this week in a horrific incident.  A 17 year old student was stabbed to death in school. A young life tragically cut short.

What can we learn from this? Being a parent today is more challenging than generations prior. As parenting expert, Dr. Michele Borba stated on the Today Show, “June Cleaver didn’t have to worry about social networking, online safety, sexting or texting, Internet predators and so much more.” Which means parenting today has become more complex, however the good news is, the vast amount of resources has increased since the Cleaver’s were introduced to us.

Parents need to take the time to be educated and learn about some warning signs that their teen may be struggling. Keeping the lines of communication open with teens today can be very difficult; however we can never stop trying.

Here are some behaviors that parents need to be aware of:

• Is your teen becoming withdrawn? Not sharing as much as they used to?
• Is their peer group changing? Do you know their friends? Showing an interest in gangs?
• Are they spending a lot of time alone?
• Change in appetite?
• Signs of depression?
• Need for attention or low self-esteem?
• Accessibility to weapons?
• Is there violence in the home?
• Risky behavior? Using or experimenting with drugs?
• Is your teen stressed?
• Are they spending a lot of time online? Do you know what sites they are visiting?

Take the time to be an educated parent . This means you a prepared parent and can lead to safer teens. If your teen is not opening up to you, don’t hestitate to seek outside help with counselors.  Communication is key!  Visit these websites below and learn more about school violence today.

For more info: Parents Universal Resource Experts, APA Help Center, National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center, Teen Criminal Activity, Big Book of Parenting Solutions,Miami Herald, Teen Health.

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