We had no idea? (Yes you did!)
In many school attacks the first comments we tend to hear are "We had no idea Billy was feeling angry." or "Billy seemed so happy, we had no idea he was depressed." The fact is, you probably knew and didn't pay attention!
Wow, you might be thinking this is a harsh, somewhat insensitive approach. The hard fact is that this is a real issue. We are missing the pain and anger that many of our kids today are experiencing today. It is easier to send them to soccer practice or toss a device in their hands then it is to address the real underlying truth, our kids need more from us. They need more attention, more accountability more one on one and quite frankly more parenting. We are missing key signs and red flags that these kids need help.
In 2019 the U.S. Secret Service published the Analysis of Targeted School Violence. As part of the study the Secret Service looked at 41 school attacks. Of the 41 attacks, 23 of them were communicated directly someone within two weeks of the attack. That translates to 66% of the attacks could have been stopped if someone just listened or saw the signs.
I'm a dad, I know we are not going to catch everything. There are times that our kids will slip something past us. I get it, we are certainly not perfect. However, we need to take more time and understand why our children are angrier, more depressed and withdrawn. There are crucial signs that we miss as a community. It takes all of us to play a part in watching for the red flags that might lead to a tragic event like a school shooting.
Many of us our home, with our kids. The offices are closed due to the quarantine restrictions. This is a perfect opportunity to inventory your life. Stop, shut down the devices and ask your kids, "How are you feeling?".