Recently I read this horrifying article about how the number of Kids attempting suicide has doubled since 2007. This fact crushed me completely, not just because I am a parent, but also, because like many of us, unfortunately, I have been exposed to someone who has had thoughts of suicide or have actually committed suicide.
Being a parent, I just want the best for my child. What parent doesn't? But, in this day and age, I think we have put so much pressure on, not just our children to do better than the best, but ourselves to always be the perfect parent in a perfect society. That's an immense amount of pressure for an adult to handle, let alone a child, who is still learning who they are going to be in the world. I think we have forgotten to just be kids. Get dirty, laugh in the rain, dance in the kitchen when everyone is watching, do those dirty dishes tomorrow, finish folding the clothes AFTER you spend that time running around the yard playing hide and go seek. I know we all have responsibilities and goals to be met, but somewhere we lost the moment where we just stop and smell the flowers. Where we listen to ourselves and those around us. We give, without taking and achieve greatness when we are meant to and how we were meant to, accepting everyones greatness will forever be different, but doesn't make it any less than the next.
In the article, it stated there isn't a real clear reason as to why this alarming number of suicide attempts has doubled in the past 12 years, but from a study they have arrived to some theories.
One theory is, as I just spoke of above, the increase pressure to be better than the best in school, with the fear about not being able to make a living in their future. And this is a pressure we feel as parents and adults already feel in our "grown up lives", but now it's flowing right down onto our children.
Another theory is the rise of social media, which in turn has brought on higher reports of cyberbullying, as well as the detachment to 'real life'. Let's be honest, not one of us can say, we haven't gone on the computer or phone today. I included in this statement, as I sit here with my cup of morning tea, writing this. Social media is clearly just as negative as it has become a positive in our society.
Bullying has always existed, as much as we would like to think back when we were kids, and convince ourselves there weren't as many cases and stories of bullying, there was. Now, with social media, bullying has become as easy as a flick of your finger across the screen, announcing it to the whole world to see and feel. We have lost the ability to express and work through our own feelings.
This morning, before we started our breakfast routine shuffle before school, I came out into the living room to see my 8 year old, taking his moment in the morning to play his Singing Drum and I realized, not everyone is as lucky as we are to be able to take this moment when we need it. Playing these drums on a daily basis has helped both of us. Clearing our minds, taking that moment in the day and just growing our bond with one another.
This is one of the many reason why I feel our B.I.G. program, Heart to Hand, is so important. Providing two of these drums in each classroom allows for children to take that moment. Reconnect with themselves, with their peers and create relationships with those they didn't think they could. Maybe the person who you thought was just being a bully because they can, has a story behind them. Being placed into a circle every day with these drums, that bully is given the chance to be heard through the drum, and a chance to let those harmful thoughts and actions to be let go. Or that child who is so unsure about themselves and has been bullied from the person who is playing the other drum across the circle, or just feeling the pressure of life, can be heard too.
We are listening...
Help support our B.I.G. program HEART TO HAND.
Click HERE for the Article I read