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The newspaper headlines for the last few days have focused on the needless death of too many teen-age children. We have to scratch our heads and wonder why? For the most part they are mostly high school students from middle class suburban homes with all of the amenities. Nice three-four bedroom homes in middle class neighborhoods with two car garages with SUV new vehicles for the teens to use at their leisure with absolutely no cost for insurance or gas. Cable TV and high speed computers along with fancy state of the art cell phones to text your friends is a must.

I suspect that for the majority of the teens in Woodstock that they have never been hungry or neglected by their parents and buying the latest fashion with large gaping holes in their jeans.

The schools in the Thames Valley District School Board are well equipped with all of the latest bells and whistles to enhance learning from gifted teachers who for the most part care for the well being of their students.

So we ask why do a small minority of students commit suicide? Perhaps teenagers with the introduction of instant communication 4-6 hours a day with 200 hundred anonymous friends on Face Book does not/can not take the place of good friends who can just sit down and talk about what is bugging them.

Check it out; moms/dads with cell phones in hand do not have the time or inkling to throw the damn phone in the closet at the end of their sometimes 13 hour work day to just ask their kids: "how are you doing."

Both parents work to help pay the cost of all of the "toys" to-day means that too many parents are not home for supper or helping with the homework of their children.

I once asked a young women, Jane who was very depressed "who she spoke to when she came home to her empty house after school." She told me that she " used to speak to her budgie but last month the sad bird died and she is all alone with her feelings of despair and loneliness with absolutely no one to talk to.

I called the executive father on his cell phone but he told me that they did not have the time to spend with their daughter. "In lieu of love and caring they felt it sufficed that they bought Jane lots of useless expensive stuff that she did not need.

Too often we parents wrongly abandon our parental duties and feel that the school boards, hospitals and doctors offer up a magic instant cure for the emotional pain of our children.

It is too little and too late to take the time to mourn for the loss of our children when they commit suicide. The teens do not need the "stuff" that we spend our days away from the house to buy. To have a home we need caring involved parents who give of their time to be involved with their kids. The sages teach us: that " those who have less seem to enjoy it a whole lot more."

Our children’s health and well being is their wealth and future. Please take the time to be your children’s loving parents.

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com