Getting Help for Teen Victims of School Violence

The teen years are a special time in any young person’s life. You may recall your own teen years and how unique that time in your life was. Today’s teens face many different circumstances that weren’t present just a generation ago. There are far more occurrences of teen violence associated with school than there has ever been in the past. These crimes are not limited to petty theft or bullying and often, teenagers are losing their lives in senseless shootings that are taking place right in many local classrooms.
Clearly, no one wants to glorify this school violence by focusing on the number of increases incidents where teen on teen violence results in serious injury or death. But in order to realize the importance and simultaneous increase need for getting help for teen victims, there has to be some acknowledgement of the fact that there are more teens committing these crimes of school violence against other teens.
That said the teen victims are not just those who are experiencing the violence first hand. There are many other victims who are suffering and in need of help. These victims include friends of those who have been hurt or killed and witnesses of the violence. Some teens are simply terrified and afraid to speak out, making them some of the victims of all because they have been unable to ask for or receive help.
Witnessing school violence that results in deaths like those at Columbine High School is not like watching an episode of DeGrassi or Hannah Montana. These are real life situations where teens are subjected to watching their friends and others lose their lives right before their eyes. Such life changing traumas are not to be taken lightly and it is imperative that these victims receive as much help as is available to them.
In a scenario where a teen has been a victim or witness to a violent incident in or around school, counseling is always in order. However, counseling is not always the best solution, particularly for teens who are worried about repercussions from others. In this case, professional help should be sought and done so in privacy so that the teen feels safe in speaking and certain that they’re revelations will be kept in the strictest of confidence.
Many communities have a wealth of resources available for teen victims of school violence ranging from religious counseling to big brothers and big sisters clubs to psychological and psychiatric professionals. Often there are free services within the community that are available just for the asking. The key is to start seeking help early and seek it often so that the damage can be minimized.