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My son starts high school real soon. This brings about a whole new experience for my son. And honestly for me. On one hand I'm excited for him. It's going to be great. On the other hand it's a huge change. There will be a new group of kids and young adults. I'm nervous. This will be the first year he takes the public bus home. One of the kids he goes home with bullied him. I know it's time for me to let go a bit. But I also want to be open to talk to him about what I consider dangerous or just plain wrong. Like drugs or unprotected sex or riding in cars. I could go on and on and on even more. I'm speaking about here because I don't want him to pick up what I'm feeling. He's my last child at home. I have two other sons and a daughter. One of my other boys is leaving for Africa in October. I have bipolar and high anxiety. So it just sits in my mind and festers. Not to mention his good friend. I'd have to make a whole new post just to explain that! My son will also be interacting with the older kids due to some of his classes. I'm just feeling a little out of control. Sorry it's all over the place. I hope you could keep up!
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by on Aug. 25, 2012 at 7:25 PM
Replies (11-11):
by Gold sister on Aug. 26, 2012 at 10:38 AM
1 mom liked this

 One of the best things we can give our children is perspective. We can't make their choices for them, we can't prevent them from seeing others' bad choices, we can't be there every step of the way to shield them from even having choices between good and bad people or situations that will cross their path. But if you can give them perspective, this will go a long way to helping them navigate these things themselves, and make it through intact.

  Keep talking! Not just to reiterate what you expect, but why. Lots of opportunites to talk present themselves when your son brings up minor things at school or comments about friends. It doesn't have to be a formal sit down thing.

  Remind him that high school may seem like a huge world, but it is microscopic in relation to the rest of his life; but unfortunately, a lot of decisions made in this small word can greatly affect the rest of his life. Remind him that he is going to see a lot kids making bad choices for themselves, that those choices might seem 'the norm' and that lots of kids can have an idea, and it's still a bad idea. Talk about what those choices might be and discuss the reasons why they might be doing these things. Talk about what he might/ might not do when faced with choices,and why, in relation to the rest of his life.

 Remind him that he's going to see a lot kids making good choices for themselves, how it affecting them, and how it is going to affect their future. Let him know you trust him to make good choices. This is important. Kids often become what they know we expect of them. If we treat them as unable to make good decisions on their own--they won't. Or they'll have a good excuse not to.

 In every chance discussion, just try and offer perspective--that high school isn't his whole world--it's a mere stepping stone to the rest of his world. High school is four years--the rest of his life is 20 times that.  Don't let anyone, or short term, unimportant things, derail you from the rest of your life or derail you from yourself. Other people and friends, no matter how close they seem, will not have to live the rest of your life--you will. 

  Giving kids a chance to see how their choices affect the rest of the world, too, is very helpful. It expands their perspective, allowing them to realize the world doesn't revolove around them and they'd better be prepared, by the choices they make now, to get a place in it . It won't come to them--they have to go to it.

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