There are many things that you need to take into consideration when it comes to extending your help to someone who qualifies as a troubled individual. Your duty to extend help or support may become more complicated if the person involved is a child in conflict with the law. Sometimes, you will have no idea where to start or how to do it because you will sympathize too much with the victim. According to a therapist, what you are feeling inside you is only a normal reaction for someone who has discovered the reality that even a child can commit a crime.
When a child commits a crime, he is not imprisoned automatically. There are specific rules, laws, and statutes that must be reviewed and applied. Otherwise, his right to due process will be violated. Under the current state laws, people who are less than eighteen years old are considered as minors. As such, they have no legal capacity to act or perform acts that have legal effects. Aside from this, they may not also be criminally liable for any crime or offense committed. However, the said liability attached depending on the presence of discretion on the part of the child involved.
In this article, our primary focus is to provide our readers with the different tips and tricks on how you can reach out to a child who is considered as one in conflict with the law. This person has committed crime or offense that may put him to jail forever were it not for his minority. Here are things to keep in mind:
Avoid Being Judgmental
The first or initial thing that you must do is to act cool and avoid giving harsh comments. Think first before you speak so that you will not end up hurting the child. Take note that just because he has done something wrong does not mean that he can no longer go through a reformation. Sometimes, all that the young offender needs is to feel forgiven for what he has done. Do not forget that the said person is still a minor, which means that he may not have the proper mental faculties to determine what is right from wrong. Your goal is to avoid giving out judgments right away without knowing the whole story. “To discover the why of rebellion, you need to listen past the words to the heart of the matter while paying special attention to the emotion shown. Look for body language to help you discover what is going on.” A piece of advice from Christine Hammond, MS, LMHC.
Reach Out To Child Involved
Another thing that you must never forget is to reach out to the child who is in conflict with the law. As much as possible, make him feel that he can come to you whenever he needs to. Do not blame him for what has happened in the past. Instead, help him to face the present and prepare for the future. Your understanding will truly matter to the said child. Keep in mind that a child knows who cares for him and those who do not. Aside from this, make an effort to let the child talk to you about what is going through in his mind. Make him feel that he can open up anything whenever he needs to talk about his issues.
Offer Acceptance As At All Times
“Because their brains are still being developed, they may behave in ways that seem impulsive, defiant, aggressive and irresponsible. Seeing the long-term consequences for their behaviors may not be so clear and they may find themselves unable to control their impulses, resulting in poor choices.” Bella Stitt, LMFT said. The best gift that you can give a child in conflict with the law is your acceptance of who he is as a person. Remember that you can never erase the fact that he screwed up at some point in his life. However, it is time that you change your mindset into something more positive. Think about accepting the other person for who he is instead of keeping reservations. Remember that the more you show your acceptance to the child, the more motivated he may become into changing for the better. Be the source of strength and inspiration of this child to improve his life. Give him hope by showing him that he deserves to get acceptance and love despite everything that happened.
“You may have done everything right. You may have tried your best to instill the right values, morals and faith. Your kid’s challenging but that doesn’t mean failure on your part.” says Allison Ricciardi, LMHC. Dealing with a troubled child or teenager is never enough. You will always find yourself in a compromising situation, especially if the other person involved is not willing to improve his life. What you need to do is to show patience and understanding. Remind yourself why you are doing the act of helping the said person. Take note that you have the power to bring in something positive in the life of a problematic teen or child. Do not waste an opportunity to help someone turn his life around. If you need help, do not hesitate to work with other organizations that are focused on helping the said children.