March 1997 from Angela's diary... "S & J (names withheld) are mad at me again because I'm not girlie enough... H isn't talking to me right now either. Girls suck. Mom's happy right now. Me on the other hand thinks life sucks. To tell the truth I hate almost everything about life. There are times that I wish I could end it and go out like a real woman (gun)". My daughter wrote that at the age of 12!!! What makes a 12 year old feel this way??? My heart just breaks to write this...middle school years are horrible for alot of young ones.
In the entries prior to this she had been writing for weeks about off and on "friendships". It appears as though her circle of friends changed their minds about who they wanted to be friends with like they changed their socks. If you were a bit different... or not as skinny... of if you had a bad hair day could mean you are "out" of the club. My daughter was very sensitive and this crowd broke her heart over and over and over again. She wanted so desperately to fit in and she took the abuse. She smiled and hid the tears and pain... but inside she wanted to die. That's how devastated she had become. Young people need to be taught that their judgements, criticism, cruelty and abandonment can scar people for life. Some are not strong enough to overcome this... other will. My daughter developed her tough girl persona and pretended it was just fine with her. This is when her attitude began to change.
She no longer felt good about herself...she was no longer proud of the fact that she was smart... pretty and loving. It didn't matter if I told her how special and beautiful she was... I was her mom I 'had to say that'. The cruelty of the young... tweens and teens get crushed daily by the careless words and deeds of their peers. Many of them waiting for the day that someone else is on the chopping block and they are just forgotten by the masses which is equally dangerous. As parents we need to become more aware which side of the fence your children are on... and we must be able to accept if they are on the side that is giving out the punches to others. Watch your child, their reactions to others... the gossip they talk... how do they speak of the fellows peers? Do they speak kindly or do they always have some sort of "negative trash talk" to spread even about their "friends". If they do you as their parent need to teach them the right way to be a friend and the proper way to respect those that are not in their circle.
In a time when the world is fixed on issues of racism etc. (and I am not saying these are not important issues - they are) we show little concern for how are children treat each other across the board. Folks, I'm serious... don't chalk this off as teen age growing pains. That's crap. One of the biggest problems in this world today is the way we treat our fellow man. No we aren't going to like or befriend everyone. People are different... but respect every man... yes absolutely. Let's do our part to bring up a generation of kind, loving, respectful young people. Do your part... it's your job and it's a tough one no doubt.
Angela began her drug use the summer she wrote this entry... let's save other young ones from this feeling of inadequacy... step it up folks... monitor your young ones behavior. Pray for the children.