Susie then stays the rest of the day so students who want to talk about personal concerns can meet with her in private or in small groups. Most schools pick a “safe room” where teens can talk with Susie uninterrupted. We announce at each assembly that she will be available for teens to talk with her in a specified location during certain class periods.
Schools may prefer Susie go into classrooms or meet with select groups of students to hold in-depth discussions on topics from the assembly. Schools may prefer to pick certain groups of students such as high-risk teens, leadership students, peer helpers /mediators/educators, a service club like FCCLA, sober or drug free group, etc.
These meetings provide a powerful and unique opportunity for teens to speak with an open, honest, spiritually and emotionally responsible adult about real life issues. Teens actually LOVE hearing the truths about life when they come from an outside adult they relate to. They often open their eyes and ears to the very same messages they refuse to listen to from parents and familiar teachers.
Susie recognizes and commits to the significant responsibility and privilege of being an example of responsible living, ethics, character and compassion to your children.
These one-on-one and/or classroom discussions always include insights into the family disease of alcoholism, how an alcoholic parent, in particular, can damage a child’s self-esteem. She helps teens understand the dangers and consequences of a teen acting out on his/her shame, blame and self-loathing. Susie makes it clear to youth that they have choices, that they can choose whether to live as a victim or to choose hope and possibilities. She helps teens see the realities of the disease of alcoholism and that they do not cause alcoholic parents to drink, be abusive, critical or neglectful. And that teens cannot control a parent’s behaviors or use; and they cannot cure their parent’s problems.
These discussions often focus on specific topics that a school is concerned about such as bullying, stress, self-harm, etc. Susie has special expertise in teaching stress management tools and is able to wrap them into lessons on life. Teens love her self-help slogans and positive self-talk tips, Yoga for the Classroom and guided relaxation meditation.