A note for all you young 'uns

Oh geez, this is embarassing, but I have to say something.

Um, I was really screwed up as a teenager, but I shan’t elaborate.

Now I’m all grown up and very very old and wise at 23 (well…relatively).

I was told yesterday by my best friend that when we were 18, my mom called her up one day, just to ask her how I was doing.
I was doing horribly, but my friend didn’t blow my cover, give away any secrets. Maybe that wasn’t such a wise move, but she was only 18 as well.

Hearing this piece of news made me cry. Funny, because I never cry. I cried because with my 23-year old perspective, I could understand how intensely painful it must have been for my mom to feel that the only way she could know what was going on with me was to ask my friend instead of me.
In those years she tried to talk to me, but I refused to do so on hundreds of occasions. I left her to guess and worry and I imagine how helpless she must have felt, unable to do anything while I seem to sink deeper and deeper into this pit.

I felt bad enough to tell this story to my roommates, and one of them said
“You dont need to feel bad, a teenager usually doesn’t understand, they don’t have the ABILITY to understand that their parents want to HELP them…”

I still feel bad. Doesn’t seem right to hurt the people who ove you the most (but I guess we all do that).

Anyway, thought I’d share this in case it might be useful to somebody.
Buh-bye kids!


This post is definitely going to be passed along to a few of my friends.

I think it was incredibly wise and generous of you to share this, Turpentine.

Turpentine - I can relate.

I was so closed off from my parents that even though I was showing signs of clinical depression in high school, I never listened to my mom (who also has depression) when she wanted to talk to me about it. I always told her I had other things to do, I was about to go out, etc. So for the years I was in the AF - and then for 4 years after I got out - I went through my bouts of depression alone. It wasn’t until this past year, when I was officially diagnosed,. that I spoke to my mom about it. It was heartbreaking to hear her tell me how she saw the signs and tried to help but I just wouldn’t listen.

When your parents want to talk, sit down and talk with them. Not only are they talking to you because they love you, but you never know when you may get that chance again. In the spring of 2000, my father had heart problems and my first thought was of all the things we never got to do or talk about. Thankfully he’s all right now, but don’t let something like that happen with you wishing you had done things differently.

BTW - Turp, my first thought when I saw how old you were and looking back five years made me remember something a friend once said. He said, "When I was 18, I thought I knew everything. Then I turned 21 and realized I didn’t know shit when I was 18. Then when I turned 25 I couldn’t believe how stupid I was when I was 21. Now I’m 30 and looking back at 25 and I can’t believe I used to think I was smart. I was an idiot at 25.
“I wonder if this happens my whole life. Am I gonna be 80 and saying, ‘Oh my God! I can’t believe how dumb I was when I was 74! I didn’t know jack back then!’”

Thank you, turpentine! You are very wise to have realized what you told us…I’m sure it will help someone.

Turp-- Don’t know where to start but here goes:

Glad you shared your story. I’ve often thought about how it is with teenagers and their parents… I’ve seen SO MANY situations similar to yours, just through casual acquaintances in all kinds of families. I can relate on a personal level, too (probably to a lesser degree than your own situation) and I had a sort of ‘revelation’ at an older age as well, that there were a couple years when I know I put my mom through hell, and felt total remorse. I would venture to say that that sort of thing (ie, being lost or screwed up to some degree and being totally closed off to parents) happens to a good majority of teens and would conclude that it is even, well, for lack of a better term, “normal”, in that it happens more than people realize.

But you’re the first person I’ve seen really articulate it, and once again, I thank you.

Thanks, Sister Turp…that touched a nerve in me. hugs

I think everyone on the whole board knows my story. My mom hadn’t a clue what was going on with me, my depression, suicide attempts, and cutting problems until she found that letter I had written, and had talked to a few of my friends. I’m much more open with her now.

Somehow I’m one of the lucky ones. I never had a problem sharing my life and events with my mom. Now that I’m 20 it is even closer. it always confused me how my peers wouldn’t tell anyone but their own friends what was going on in their lives.

On top of this I’m a busybody and when I saw a friend getting into trouble and couldn’t stop them. I would call up their parents and explain the situation. This policy of mine has kept all my friends close to me since the 7th grade when I moved to Florida. I’m also close to their parents as well. It makes a very nice support circle for everyone involved.

I just wish more people would speak up when they see a problem. When you have a suicidal friend, it is more important to get them help than worry if they will talk to you ever again.

Parents are very important people. No one will ever love you how they love you.