One out of five children will experience mental illness. That’s 80,000 kids in Bexar County alone. The need for support for these children, their parents and their families is great, and because school plays such a large role in a child’s life, the school’s adult community should be a part of any child’s support system. But as parents and caregivers, we often wonder who is in the best position to help our child and what is the best way to solicit that support in a way that is both appropriate and helpful.
Few people – if any – would argue that the mental health of our children is not important. Quite the opposite, children’s mental health can have a profound effect not only on their quality of life, but also on the quality of the communities that surround them. A happy, healthy child grows into a happy, healthy adult. Unfortunately, that future isn’t a guarantee for any child, and even less so for children experiencing mental illness.
For parents, it is shocking and distressing to witness the changes in one’s child experiencing a mental health crisis. They wonder: is this my child? Where does this come from? What did I do to cause this?