Over the last week, a few events have converged: I’ve watched snippets of the Olympics, I’ve been planning a session for an upcoming Mental Health Academy, and I’ve overheard my neighbour interact with his children.
You might not think these have much in common. However, they have all reminded me how important it is for children to have at least one significant adult in their lives: someone they can trust; someone who honours their individuality and supports their physical, emotional, and mental wellbeing; someone who stands by them as they make decisions and mistakes; ultimately, a stable, positive role model.
Josh Shipp has phrased it this way: “Every child is one caring adult away from being a success story.” Some children are fortunate to have many significant, caring adults in their lives. Others are forced to look outside their homes: a teacher or coach, for example.
These kids certainly don’t come up and ask us to be that significant, caring adult in their lives and yet most often we know which are craving a relationship such as this. They might be the ones acting out, making decisions that draw attention–any kind of attention–towards them. Or, they might be the ones that withdraw, attempting to make themselves invisible in our presence.
Have you considered that you may be the one? Is there a student, a player, or a neighbour child in your life who needs you?