One of my 15 year old son’s friends, was recently chucked out of his home, by his abusive alcoholic parents. He is currently staying with another friends parents home, which I am so thankful for.
When I picked my son up today, I gave his friend a card, with a message inside saying we know he is going through tough times and we wanted him to know he is always welcome at our home too. I wrote our mobile numbers and said he could call us anytime. I also included $50 for him to use, because he left home with very little.
He told me he couldn’t accept the money, but I insisted and I could see he was getting emotional. It took every bit of strength in me to not cry. To know how this boy is feeling, the abandonment, the abuse and trauma he has already endured, has made me very emotional.
I also asked if he and the friend he is staying with, wanted to come with us to basketball at the police run centre we go to every Wednesday after school, and they seemed really keen on that. So that was good. I also said I would talk to the parents where he is staying, to see how we can help.
As I walked away, I could feel the tears starting to fall down my cheeks.
I don’t know the issues going on in this boys parents home, but whatever his parents issues are, they have treated their son appallingly. And abusively. And that is not okay and not justified by their own issues with alcohol.
I want this boy to know there are people who care about him, and for him to know 2 families care about him, is important to a teen who has endured abuse. Especially when the abuse is your own parents. Your parents are meant to be the people who love you, cherish you and protect you the most. Abusive parents fail at this completely. That has deep effects on the child/teen and the adult they become.
Then we called into a fast food place, to get some ice-creams, and a girl I used to care for when she was a young teenager, was outside the fast food place, looking really unwell. She works there after university. I asked her if she was okay, and she said she was ill and had just been told to go home. So, I offered to give her a lift home and said to her she could phone me any time if stuck like that again. Her mum is a single mum, and has lots of problems associated with horrible divorces. When I used to care for this teenager girl and her siblings, she used to tell me all her problems and confide in me. She told my in-laws who were in the car, that I was the person who “helped her most when she was sad and I was like her therapist”. I nearly started crying again. It was clear I was an important part of her life, for the 4 years I cared for her after school and in the holidays. She gave me huge hugs when we got to her house.
I am thankful to be able to help children and teenagers, when they go through difficult and traumatic issues.
I know how important it is and the effect it has when you don’t have any support, or anyone there for you, as a child or teenager.
And there are a lot of children and teenagers suffering, and all I can do, is support those I can help.
~ Lilly Hope Lucario
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