Editors Round Table - Noni’s Opinion
Homeless Teenagers of American Veterans:
These days, our society has record numbers for unsheltered people. One group is overlooked and never thought of when you think of an unsheltered person. That group are the teenagers of American soldiers. They are the unseen and forgotten family members that fall through the cracks.
We know that teenagers runway for many reasons. One commonly known reason is abuse. We also know that abuse comes in many forms. Sometimes the damage is already baked into the family structure by the time our former military members exit the military. After being deployed for weeks or months at a time, former military members often come back to angry teens. Teens that were forced to leave friends behind due to circumstances beyond their control. Routinely being uprooted from their neighborhood and schools.
Let’s not glide by the obvious either. When Mom or Dad is deployed, the remaining parent goes through hell. To start with, moving from base to base is agonizing. Handling the angry kids creates enormous pressure on the stay at home parent. Tempers get short and bad things happen. Verbal and sometimes physical abuse occur. So what happens when some children get angry and fed up with life at the house? They head for the nearest exit. The last straw one night might be taking out the trash. They go out the back door and keep on going. On their way to school they decide to run away from home. Page 2