I want to tell you a story. This is a story of a crushed teenage girl that just broke my heart into a million pieces when I heard it. It broke me because I can relate to this girl in a very profound and real way. For I have had the same type of life and do not wish it on anyone.
I wish like hell there was some way I could talk to this girl and tell her how very special she is. How I know it does not seem like it now in this moment, but she will be okay. She will move past this experience with a deeper understanding of how some people can suck the life force right out of others; but that every single thing changes. Where there once was pain, there will eventually be love. How, there are people in her life right now in this very moment that do love her more than life itself. They are there for her to help her get through the tough times and to laugh with her in the good. She is special, she is loved and cared about.
So what is this story that has me so worked up?
It goes like this, there is this 15-year-old girl. She is a bigger girl. Very talented and beautiful, smart and funny, caring and considerate of other’s feelings. The most tender-hearted person you could ever meet. But she has been teased, left out of the social loop, cast aside and isolated by her peers. Others make fun of her for all sorts of reasons, mostly because they are immature and find it funny to put others down. They think it makes them look or seem cool to their friends. It is painful to her always being left out. She has developed suicidal thoughts, depression, and anxiety because of the years of this sort of treatment.
She has been in treatment, is seeing a therapist and on medication for over a year. She has been doing great the last few months and things looked like they were turning around for her. Her self-esteem was going up, she was getting straight A’s in all of her classes, even had a few friends that were starting to invite her places. She smiled daily and laughed as well as starting to finally focus on the positive side of life.
She had an opportunity to attend a school camping trip for a weekend and was actually really excited about this trip. She texted her mom that things were going great and she was having a lot of fun. On the second night, she texted her mom again in all caps as if shouting from the rooftop….
“MOM GUESS WHAT?”
Mom replies, “what?”
“TOMMY JUST ASKED ME TO THE HOMECOMING DANCE. I CAN’T BELIEVE IT I HAVE A REAL DATE, WITH A BOY!”
Mom again, “wow, hun that is awesome. You have had a crush on him for 3 years now. I am happy for you.”
A few hours later mom gets another text from her daughter again in all caps.
“MOM, WE WERE AT THE BONFIRE AND HE SAT NEXT TO ME WITH HIS ARM AROUND ME AND WE SHARED A COAT TOGETHER, LIKE IT WAS ON BOTH OF OUR SHOULDERS AND EVERYTHING. IT WAS SO CUTE AND AWESOME.”
“THEN JIMMY CAME UP AND ASKED US IF THIS WAS A BOYFRIEND/GIRLFRIEND TYPE OF CONVERSATION AND TOMMY SAID, MAYBE.”
Mom replied, “how sweet hun. I am so happy for you. I want to hear all about it when you get home.”
When the girl returned home, she was so excited she could not stop talking about it. She and Tommy were now going out. A boy actually liked her. She was no longer the odd one out. She had a date to the dance just like the rest of her friends. The dance was this upcoming weekend and she had already bought a dress.
A few days later, Tommy texted her saying they needed to talk. He told her that he only asked her to the dance because he was desperate for a date. That he did not really like her in that way. When she asked why he told her he liked her and asked her out and cuddled with her on the camping trip, he responded by saying he was desperate for interaction and did not want to hurt her feelings. Of course, what he ended up doing is sending her on a tailspin down into the bottomless abyss called depression. He used her, got her hopes up, sent her up into the clouds higher than she had ever been. Then spit her out like a rotten fruit. Soaring headlong into the ground leaving a crater where once her heart had been. It crushed her spirit, broke her heart and killed her soul.
How do people do things like this to others? Why do they do it? I am in tears just writing this story out to share with you. This poor girl. I feel crushed for her. It brings back so many memories of my youth. How do we reach out to girls like this and get them to understand that they DO MATTER? How do we break through all of this pain they go through and help them feel special, loved, needed, wanted and cared about? Adults can only do so much. Therapists can only do so much.
Teens NEED their peers. They crave friendship and acceptance from those their own age. We as adults can talk, teach, preach, lead by example and be there for them, but that is never enough. We can tell them how special they are, but until they actually FEEL IT from someone their own age, I am not sure what we as adults are doing much good.
It sucks!!! It really really sucks! I am so tired of hearing story after story like this one. Of seeing the pain and torment that some of these kids are going through and knowing that I cannot “FIX” it for them. My heart bleeds and my head hurts. You see, this one hits way way too close to home. This girl in this story is my very own daughter. This JUST happened to her this weekend and this boy (whose name I changed here) came up to her out of the blue to ask her out, lead her to believe he was her boyfriend and cared about her then just broke up with her today over text message after only what 2 days of “going out.”
I am sickened. I have NO clue how to help my daughter in this situation other than just being there for her. Taking her to therapy and telling her then reinforcing that she is special to me. My deepest fear is that it is not enough to help her. I am lost, she is lost and this boy should be ashamed of himself for what he did hurting an innocent girl like this.