Emotional Intelligence | Stevehein.com
Like my EI Journal the idea is to put little things here related to teens which I don't know where else to put, which are incomplete etc.
August 2, 2006
I was just writing about Kelly and started writing this..
I am thinking now of Sarah W in England. She had a counselor she felt pretty safe talking to. Then when Sarah turned 18 she no longer could see that counselor according to some rules. This is the kind of rule or law that makes little sense to me. A teens needs don't magically change on their birthdays.
I can see that it makes sense for an agency to organize their cases in some way or other, but there must be a better way.
Here are some things they could do instead
Ask the caseworkers if they want to be keep in touch with the person. Maybe Sarah's counselor would have liked to keep talking to Sarah, but she was afraid to get fired if she did.
Have some kind of transition time if you are going to stop seeing someone at some arbitrary time. Let them start seeing someone else and keep in touch with them to see how it is going.
Jen also told me that she used to be able to talk to some teachers in her school. Then when she moved to the next year they told her they couldn't talk to her anymore.
Have them manage their own caseloads. Instead of dropping someone like Sarah W. let them stop taking new people if they feel overloaded. But make sure there is someone to talk to the new people.
Use someone like Sarah W. to help them. Teens are vastly underestimated. They could help other teens. The ones I know and work with online do it all the time with virtually no supervision or training and they are still a big help.
I don't know exactly why adults have set up systems like schools where they try to control or teach so many young people with so little help. Many teens have lots of time on their hands and would have even more if they weren't pressured by grades, tests, etc. They could help in the schools and in the social work agencies, orphanages, nursing homes and a lot of other places.
Police intimidate. Threaten. Push their weitgh around. "We have jurisdiction here." (From Ocean)
Police were involved several times with Kely.
Tackled a 13 year old who was in the mental hospital with Ocean.
Interogated Sarah when she said she was raped.
FBI interogated Nicole in the mental hsopita.
Police interrogated Ocean when she was in the SI room.
Police are not helping teens. Not helping them feel more understood, supported, free or secure.
August 3, 2006
Copied from Jan 23, 2005 journal entry
Being in Peru has helped me see certain things more clearly. The problems are more obvious. The behavior is more primitive. More direct. Less subtle. If a teenager talks back to the parent, the parent hits the teenager. It is very simple here. It is simple to see how the parents control their children and teenagers with the use of fear, while all the time talking about respect. It is painfully obvious there is no such thing as mutual respect here.
Something else that has become more clear to me is how the laws which prevent a teenager from leaving home before they are 18 are designed, not to protect the teenager, but to protect incompetent parents. I have seen this when I talk to the teenage females who live in abusive homes. They tell me they can't leave until they are 18. By that time most of them have been so beaten down psychologically and are so afraid of disobeying, and are so insecure and dependent on their parents that they don't leave even when they are 18.
And here there is no where for them to go. In Australia there were places a teenager could go if they felt they could not live at home. Here there are not.
If parents were meeting the needs of a young person, why would that young person want to leave? If they were giving him food, shelter, love, understanding, freedom, a sense of self-control, for example, why would that person want to leave? And if they did leave, wouldn't they want to come back if they found that there needs were not being met as well somewhere else? They would only stay away if their needs were being better met.
When I think about this realization, it stuns me. It makes me question everything else the adults have done to children and teenagers over time. It makes me question all their motives. It makes me realize how messed up the social systems is in the world. It makes me wonder which country was the first to pass this kind of law. And what the thinking was behind it.
It also reminds me of a basic problem with laws. It is much easier to pass a law than to get rid of it. Over time, the reason behind the law is forgotten. I am not sure one could even ever discover the real reason for the law, because the lawmakers are smart enough to disguise the motives for the law. It reminds me that young people have to question everything and can take nothing on face value.
Today I asked a 20 year old when she was going to start doing what she wanted to do and stop asking her father for permission. She said, "When I am 25"