This is where the community comes in. Kids with strong connections to safe adults are less likely to be targeted and more likely to tell if they are. LGBTQ kids are less likely to struggle with suicidal ideation when they have adults who accept them as they are. Kids dealing with anxiety and depression have better outcomes when they have safe adults to talk through their emotions with, who can support them through difficult times. I’ve talked endlessly about the need for strong relationships with parents as the best preventive medicine we have for keeping children safe and supported. I’ve also talked, on my other site, about the importance of work-life balance and inclusivity when it comes to the workplace for parents. That’s what being the community that families need to succeed includes.
The Being Trauma Aware website offers a free 5 module course on how to have more trauma-aware interactions.
From my perspective as an abuse survivor, if you think there’s even a chance your child has been abused, bullied, or is simply dealing with mental health challenges that need help, get the help early if you can. It only gets worse the longer you wait. Read the examples, and if any of them sound like your kid, do something.
Middle School can be a trying time for kids. They are getting older but aren’t teenagers yet. They are going through changes and dealing with big issues without much experience dealing with emotions. Luckily, Sarah Zellner offers up these suggestions for books about mental health targeted at this age range.
What we see here is what we see for a lot of mental health solutions, it works for some, and doesn’t work for others. Mental health is complicated. As the article points out, if the school environment is hurting student mental health or they are living in an environment at home that does the same, mindfulness isn’t going to change that and isn’t likely to have much of an overall impact even if they engage.
It’s complicated. The solutions are going to be complicated as well. I’d like some simple mindfulness training to be “the answer” for everyone too, but it just isn’t.
On the other hand, if it helps you, keep doing it.