Friday, 13 March 2009

Conversations with children

And I'm not talking the amusing cutsie ones you have with little ones either! Yesterdays tea time conversation at work covered the topics of drugs, alcohol, abortion, euthanasia, suicide and mental health. It came up in relation to two things, firstly the fact that someone had climbed up the crane outside their school and threatened to throw themselves off as their boyfriend had split up with them, and secondly the fact that their school wasn't doing anything for comic relief due to abortion links. Sometimes the sex talks are the easy one! They are secondary age, but trying to explain to a teenager that even if someone is threatening to kill themselves that should never be a reason to stay with them isn't always the most simple. Also trying to tell them that even if these things are a cry for attention rather then a serious attempt, it may be that it means they get the help they need. Add on to that talking about death from alcohol poisoning, why I have a brother my parents adopted, and Swiss suicide clinics it doesn't make for the easiest conversation, but you know what, I think these are the kind of important things that need to be discussed.

I guess they are the kind of topics that aren't pleasant, but if we don't talk to kids (ok they aren't my kids but I have looked after them for 7 1/2 years) about these things then who will?