Archive | January 2012

Children First

If you are not a parent, never worked with children, or have never stepped foot into someone’s classroom other than your own, you may not fully understand where I’m coming from with this. I want you to picture these four children.

Child One: An eighth grade girl who got beat with a metal baseball bat minutes before being taken to school. She wore bruises on her right arm and leg.

Child Two: A third grader who had been infected with lice several times each year but has now upgraded to fleas flying around her.

Child Three: A fifth grade student who ran away from school down a two-lane street, and then ran away from home the next morning.

Child Four: Another eighth grade student who wanted to bleach her skin in order to look pretty.

What do these girls all have in common? Lack of love and attention from home (some do have much more serious problems). You can’t really understand a child until you meet their family. These kids today are totally different from when I was growing up. Back then, a phone call home was a certified whoopin when you got home and you straightened right up. There were consequences and the teachers weren’t expected to raise their children for them.

News Flash: We’re dealing with a different breed, ladies and gentlemen. Not only are the children different, but so are the parents. We’ve past the “Babies having babies” stage. We’ve now reached the “Infants having babies” stage. Any time where twelve year olds are having children, there’s a problem. These parents are either too young or too old to be handling these children. These children have no fear. They have no trust. They have no support where they need it most; their parents. The children that I mentioned earlier are a part of true scenarios. I’ve been a School Social Worker for over seven years and I have seen many things. Things that make me jump for joy, shake my head, or even drink. If you don’t get anything out of this blog, then I want you to get this- children are meant to be loved, supported, and protected, and if you can’t provide that, then don’t have them.

Many of the issues that school professionals have to deal with are behavior problems, and many times, on top of academic problems. And what’s the underlying issue for about ninety percent of those problems- lack of attention, or shall I say appropriate or positive attention. Some examples of this type of behavior are: making noises, running away, cutting, tantrums, being overly dependent, etc. Somewhere there is a disconnect- children aren’t learning the appropriate ways to behave or to problem-solve, and often they are neglected when it comes to support, guidance, and discipline. Whether they admit or not, children need rules and structure, and if that’s missing, there’s gonna be a problem.

I feel sorry for these children who feel the need to go through drastic channels in order to spark someone’s, anyone’s, attention. And usually by the time the parents try to get a handle on the acting out behaviors, it’s too late. The children move on to getting whatever attention (positive or negative) they can get from anyone who will give it. It’s time to step up and protect our children. Hug them. Talk to them. Show them that you love them and care before it’s too late and they end up on a show like Criminal Minds. I had a student almost in tears and begging for me to talk to her earlier; “Just five minutes”. There are so many others like her who are crying out for help, verbally and nonverbally. Let’s please nourish our babies with food, love, support, and attention.

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Please Stay Home

After spending some time at the mall last week, I am very disappointed to have spotted many fashion no-no’s.  Now granted, I am not saying that I am better than or have never sported a no-no, but I would definitely say that I don’t do any of these. So if you wear any of the listed no-no’s, please stay home.

+ Pajamas: Ladies and gentlemen {sigh}, PJs are meant for the bedroom and are not appropriate for the mall, the grocery store, the bank, or anywhere outside of the house.

+ Sagging: I don’t care if your jeans are baggy, but if I can see any part of your draws, we have a problem. Last week, my boyfriend and I were walking behind these three teenagers; one, his pants were acceptable (baggy, not saggy), but the other two… let’s just say that half of both cheeks for each were highly visible. So in this case, get a belt or stay your behind home!

+ Male Skinny Jeans: Men, please listen very closely. Okay, you ready? SKINNY JEANS ARE NOT FOR YOU! THEY ARE NOT YOUR FRIEND AND THEY ARE NOT SEXY ON YOU! I don’t think you should stay home, but you should definitely not leave the store with them in your hand. Fair enough?

+ Princess Outfit: Parents who truly love their daughters think of them as princesses (at least when they are little). However, that does not give you the right to have them dress as such in public places (unless they are performing somewhere), especially when you pair the tutu with cowboy boots. Both you and the child should stay home until you choose a more appropriate outfit. This is not as cute as you may think.

+ Shorts: There’s nothing wrong with shorts… except when it’s below sixty degrees. Let there be a day that is thirty degrees and the next day be thirty-two, I guarantee that you will see at least one idiot that’s sporting shorts and a sweatshirt. Stay home and think about making a better choice.

So what did you learn today… just because it’s in style, doesn’t mean you have to participate.

Addicted or Just Lovin’ It?

Once again Hollywood has made something out of nothing. Or shall I say, created the ultimate excuse. Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to formally introduce you to the true definition of a sex addict.

♣ Sex Addiction: having to do with obsessing over sex and the act of feeling compelled to have sexual relations. “A pattern of repeated sexual relationships involving a succession of lovers who are experienced by the individual only as things to be used.”  Some symptoms include:

  • Continuation of the behavior despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent social, academic, financial, psychological, or physical problem that is caused or exacerbated by the behavior.
  • Need to increase the intensity, frequency, number, or risk of behaviors to achieve the desired effect, or diminished effect with continued behaviors at the same level of intensity, frequency, number, or risk.
  • Giving up or limiting social, occupational, or recreational activities because of the behavior.
  • Persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to stop, reduce, or control those behaviors.

There continues to be a debate on whether this is actually a disorder/disease or not. But, it’s funny how the term “sex addict” is carelessly thrown around every time a celebrity is caught with their pants down. There was Eric Benet, Kirk Franklin, Charlie Sheen, Tiger Woods, and now Russell Brand. People please understand that this is not a “Get Out of Jail Free” card. You just flat out cheated; now admit it and keep it moving.

So what did you learn today…I don’t believe that you are a “sex addict”. It’s a lame excuse, so just stop it!