Editor, The News:
Our hearts ache for Amanda Todd and her family.
Kids will confide in other kids a lot sooner than they will in adults. There is at least one high school in B. C. that has in place a group of volunteer student peer counselors for teens who are having trouble in their lives. This group of student counselors is trained and supervised by professional counselors. There is a room in the school where they can talk privately to each other, and there are group meetings where all the kids can share their experiences and know they are not alone.
There needs to be help lines and safe houses available 24 hours a day, too. Because it just doesn’t stop.
These kids are in real pain and need help, but don’t always have the courage or strength to reach out to authorities. Some are still out there in real danger, just like Amanda was.
It seems that she was finding some support from her teachers and school, and certainly from her parents, but not from her peers.
This is where a peer counselor could step in, to encourage them and help break the pattern of loneliness.
Mixing with other kids who are having troubles could also help to ease their pain and suffering, and help them gain some strength.
It’s not easy to get through adolescence. But there are many really good kids out there, too, and they could be standing ready to talk to the kids that are still out there suffering.
Our hearts break for these children, and we must find some way to help them.