GREAT documentary on HBO for Parents

Its called Middle School Confessions.

It has middle school talk candidly about sex, drinking, sexual identity, about being bullied, depression.

the most heartbreaking were the kids being bullied regarding sexual identity, the kid being bullied for being poor and the kids who began to suffer depression because his friends all dumped him.

it really is a great documentary. kinda puts things in perspective from a teens point of view and remind you how hard it is to be a teen

though kinda scary how early kids are having sex. i graduated in 95 and was in graduated middle school in 91 and even then we had fast girls. but the entire grade

makes me glad me and my bf don’t drink so when we have kids at least they won’t be stealing it from us.

When I see things like that it reinforces my commitment to homeschooling! And I guess I’m contributing to the delinquency of minors because we make homebrew and our kids help :slight_smile: Although they don’t imbibe, they do know how to make mead and beer.

It is sad how children treat other children. And sadly I have seen that those who were bullies in school became bullies as adults as well. My dh’s boss is one of those!

Yes, I’m homeschooling a middle schooler and am so happy that he doesn’t have to deal with all the stuff in the local middle school. Even in the private school that he was going to before we took him out to homeschool, bullying was and continues to be a tough topic. My daughter still goes to school there (long story, but she loves it and insists on staying) but teasing and bullying is a problem in her 3rd grade classroom.

It’s hard to imagine how kids become so insensitive to others and so hard to control at such a young age. One has to wonder what is going on at home.

I always wonder why the first question people ask when they find out that we homeschool is about socialization. Just because kids are forced to socialize other kids their own age at school doesn’t mean they learn good socialization skills.

I actually had someone tell me that because my children aren’t inflicted with the “normal” school BS that they won’t be able to cope in the real world. Because they weren’t subjected to bullying, harassment, and put into situations with lots of peer pressure they will end up somehow disadvantaged. (we really need an eyes rolling smilie!)

My daughter went to an inner-city school for a few months for 5th grade. It was horrible. She said that the kids were always talking about sex, who was pregnant, who was “doing” whom and who was using drugs. 5th grade. Man things have changed since I was that age! I remember in 5th grade boys were just starting to not have cooties and drugs were something those “weird hippies” did (not to be confused with the non-weird hippy that was my mother LOL!).

Not only that, but trying to get school administrations to actually do something about a bully is horrible. In my daughter’s girl scout troop, one girl was bullied so badly, it had started to get physical. The school refused to do anything, other than give the bully a 3 day suspension. When the suspension was over, the bullying started back up even worse. Even the police wouldn’t get involved because it was children and not adults.

My daughter had one girl in her band class call her a b*tch because my daughter was a grade younger and could play her instrument better. I took that directly to the counselor with child in tow and they put a stop to it immediately. They stated that they could interfere in this case because band class was a privledge and the other girl could always be removed. We were lucky it didn’t go further than that.

Honestly, homeschooled, private schooled, or public schooled, the child will run into unpleasent people later in life. I think the whole socialization thing is a bunch of bull stinky. I’m semi-homeschooling right now, but I know I’m not doing it right. If I could figure out the proper way to do it, I’d love to continue…otherwise, as soon as we apply for permanent residency here, the kids are being put into school.

The whole homeschooling topic is so controversial. I think it’s horrible that middle school has gotten so bad. When I was in middle school there was SOME drugs, smoking and I suppose sex, but it wasn’t everyone by any means. I think by seeing these things and understanding they weren’t for me, it really helped me later on, but I do see the benefits of homeschooling.
Of course socialization is an issue as school provides an instant social scene, but clearly those of you who homeschool know this and plan accordingly.
I’m so afraid for the future generation. I’m scared to even have kids and have them have to deal with these issues, since they only seem to be getting worse. I think there needs to be something drastic done. Education at school and at home can only do so much to prepare children for the issues they will face.

I think I understand what some people mean when they talk about socialization. Because truely what are workplaces but high school all over again. they are the popular people, the geeky people, jocks, the band people, the “good group” the “bad group” the people the can float with all the crowds. and there is peer pressure at work, just as there is at school. well at least all the places that I have worked at. It has been like that. I remember when I entered the work force I told myself what the hell did i go to college and post grad for if all i did was end up right back in high school??:roflhard: :roflhard:

I think the point of the video opening parents eyes to how different it is for kids growing up these days. It is so much harder to grow up now then it was 15 years ago when I was in middle school. or however many years ago when other parents were in middle school.

The poster who commented on her daughter going to an inner city school. that should have been a great learning experience for your child. She probably has more than any of those kids. Most kids from inner city schools come from broken homes. Many of those parents are either overworked or not even around. those girls look for love the compeletly wrong way. Try to understand the psychologically of what is going on here.

in that documentary one parent didn’t even realize that her daughter was drinking to take away her pain. She never even talked about it. she just talked about the one incident while the girl talked about drinking away her pain. she was self medicating. now why would a 13 year who lives in a beautiful suburb of denver need to do that? She lives in a big house with both parents yet something is wrong. the unsaid was that 13 year old was an alcoholic. that is very very sad and scary. what would cause a 13 year old the need to drink her pain away?

There is more going on than just bad influence of the other kids. some of it is parents just failing their kids. and these are kids in nice schools.

The other problem is when they spoke to the girls in these nice schools was that when these girls spoke about the first time they started messing with boys. they said that they said no. but the boy continued. but that they didn’t know how to make him stop but then well it felt nice so it didn’t feel wrong anymore. now that is a major problem. that boy shouldn’t have stop when told no. There is a rise of “these misunderstandings” when the boy says i didn’t really think she meant it. Mothers and fathers really need to sit down and talk to their kids frankly about sex at an 12 since that is when they start liking each other and talking about what the can and cannot do.

my parents did with me. but then I had teenage parents. I was surrounded by teenage parents. Me and my siblings are the only one of my cousins on my mothers side with very few exceptions (my mothers side is LARGE) that didn’t have kids while in high school or in college. They talked to me at 11 years old. they were blunt. they talked to my brother and they were blunt. I remember what is was like for them to struggle since I’m their oldest.

Since I am the product of teenage parents I know that not all come out bad since I went to college and post grad and have a good job. but most do not. My father finished college but it took him until I was in post grad. But he got lucky, he got a great job that had a lot of advancement and tuition reimbursement.

Thing is, nothing has changed. Well, at least not in the past 20 years. The difference is we hear more today than we did in the past. With the internet and media…it’s information overload, actually. When I was in Jr. High, back in '89-'91, it was just the same. There were drugs, there was sex, there was drinking…Actually, when I was in 6th grade, I knew a boy, in the same class as I was, who dealt marijuana.

“Underage sex” is nothing new either. It’s just way back when, it wasn’t discussed like it is now. My grandma (now in her late 70’s) had her first child when she was 17. My aunt (now approaching her 60’s) got pregnant when she was 16 or 17. My sister (now in her late 20’s) had her first child when she was 16. I could go on and on about people I know or whom I’m related to who have had kids at a young age, but, I think the point has been made…lol…It’s just gotten to a point where, as a society, we are more open about things than we were 20, 30, 50 years ago. You hear everything about EVERYTHING.

I had it rough in jr. high. I mean really rough. I was constantly bullied over something that was NOT my fault and the school did nothing, the police did nothing, I had no help or support from anyone but my parents. And that was almost 20 years ago.

I think where a lot of the problems come in is parents who truly believe things weren’t “like they are now” when they were kids. It’s so easy to forget, over time, the things we had to deal with when we were young, the things that went on around us when we were kids. But, if we stop and really think about it, most of us will realize that yes, there was drugs, there was sex, there was bullying.

When I was a kid, I suffered from severe depression (which followed me into adulthood); I tried, on many occasions to commit suicide, I was a cutter (I would intentionally cut myself to ease my internal pain), however, I hid it from everyone. My parents had no clue how badly I was suffering inside because I didn’t want them to know. It wasn’t until I joined a support group in high school that my mom and dad found out about how badly I was troubled because the school counselor became so concerned she called my parents to inform them of what was going on with me.

What is so utterly sad about this is that it hasn’t changed. Sure, it’s in the open more now than it was, however, the same problems face kids now as did 20 years ago. The educational system needs a total re-vamp, parents need to be more aware of what their kids face in their daily lives and be an integral part of their child’s life. I know, were it not for my parents, I would have turned out a much different person than I am today.

Oh Demonica my heart goes out to you!! :hug: :hug: You are stating exactly what I mean. I’m so glad you were able to get the support that you needed. and I love having you here at KH!! People tend to forget what it was like and just how hard it is to be a teen. In my 8th grade graduation we had a girl pregnant. We had a kid sent a away for dealing.

My high school was actually pretty cool regarding teen pregnancy because it provided free child care so the girls could still graduate and see the children when they had study class. and we were one of the schools that provided condoms.

though it was quite awkward that my mom’s job was a social worker at the young parents program. so she usually was the case worker for all my pregnant friends at school. I was known as the condom queen at school. She kept giving them to me to pass out. She said she didn’t want to meet anymore of my friends at work.

I have to agree. it is sad what these kids are going through, but it was sad what kids where going through 10 years ago (me) 15 years ago and 20 years ago.

I think in some ways it has got worse. Because of the openess of everything in the media etc, kids are forced perhaps to deal with things at a younger age than previously, when kids would perhaps have the choice to ‘opt out’ of knowing too much to young (hmm what i meen is, an 8 year old wouldnt know the meaning if the word ‘sexy’ unless actually told about it, these days its fairly standard vocabularly).

I remeber fairly clearly being in year 5 or 6 (i was age 9-11) and some body talking about a couple (i mean a couple at age 9? c’mon!) who had been ‘doing it’ in the woods that weekend. now what they had actually been doing compared to what they thought they where doing is another matter but still the implications are there.
anyway sorry my point is, kids these days are not particularly less innocent as they where in decades gone by. it’s puberty. at that age you are getting more curious about the world in general and sexuality in particular and fed by the odd snippet from the media or overheard conversations, you start to at least look into it. there will always be those who go further than others, but as has been mentioned, whereas previously this was kept a bit quieter, now it is made very apparant, even by things like surveys and documentaries.

Now as for bullying. Bullying is a real concern for me. I was bullied horendously. like Demonica it drove me to depression (not just eenage mood swings as the teachers said) which lasted into my 20s. it coused me to self harm as i could think of no other way to deal with the pain. It drove others i know to suicide. It got me suspended from school.
There is a real problem with the way bullying is recognised and dealt with in schools, and what powers teachers have to deal with it. People often seem to ready to dismiss anything that isnt doing imediate or physical damage as not real bullying or somthing that the kid should just live with and toughen up. clearly not the case.
I do beleive bullying is an increasing problem, since unlike 10 or 20 years ago, a lot of kids use internet or have mobile phones, so the problems can n longer be left at the school gate but must follow them home and haunt them even in downtime. I don’t know about in the US, but in the UK, bullying or at least conflict seems to be getting increasingly violant, and there is the added problem of knife crime and carrying as well as gang involvmetn and gun crime. Not an everyday bullying problem, but does add a nasty edge to things.

On Tarentella my heart goes out to you!! :hug: :hug: many people just think teenager can’t suffer from true depression and its just normal. hormonal mood swings. that is just not true. I think a lot of the problem is parents are not teaching kids how to deal with conflict and differences. Teachers are not sure how to handle the problem because the parent of the bully is normally a bully themselves.

You see it at sporting events. My brother was a star ice hockey player even though he was smaller than most of the other players. At a championship game. my family and I ended sitting on the other team side because it was too full. the parents were all screaming to break my brother"s knee with the hockey stick because no one could stop him from scoring bc he was too fast. we had to ask those parents to be removed. because they were being so disruptive when the kids didn’t hurt my brother. (too the point that during the half time a few parents were screaming at their kids for not hurting my brother)

I think so many people just do not realize the extent the problem of bullying is. that is what causes the school shootings, the suicides, and substance abuse.

I don’t have HBO but it sounds like a good documentary.

There was one on PBS the other night about “Growing up online” that was very very good.
I don’t know if they’re going to air it again, but if they are, check your listings, it’s definitely worth it.

Edit: well look at that…the whole show is available online
just click on “watch the program online”. A new window will open with the chapters of the show.

thanks Diana i’ll definelty check that out

Reading through this thread has given me pause. I have not seen this documentary. What these kids are saying now sounds exactly what me and my peers were saying when we were in middle school 25 years ago. I remember thinking back then that if I had children, I was going to pay attention and never forget it was like to be 13 or 14 and never forget how horrible junior high was and that no kid of mine would be bullied and go through the same crap that I did. I was also bullied to the point of ending up depressed in those days, too. But yet, somehow, it was my fault that I was getting picked on and the people who should have been listening wouldn’t listen or didn’t want to hear it.

One thing that happened, starting when I was in elementary school in the 1970’s, was that our mothers started going to work full time. We didn’t have after school programs like kids do now, unless you went out for sports or an extra curricular in school, and those were only for the middle and high school students. Most of the time, you had to fend for yourself until your parents came home from work. I had a key to the house when I was nine years old. A lot of my classmates did, too. I know that both my parents had to work because they had to have two incomes to make ends meet, but the child in me resented the fact that my parents were always at work or too tired at night to do anything with us.

I am not trying to blame what’s going on with our kids on working mothers. I want to make that very clear here. There are mothers (and fathers) who work full time and still manage to spend time with their kids. There are parents who stay home who spend more time on themselves than they do on their kids. It’s not how much time you are given that makes a difference. [B]It’s what you do with the amount of time you are given that matters most. [/B]

What really has given me pause, is that my peers and I are now of the age to be parents of middle schoolers. You learn to be a parent from your own parents, for better or worse, and maybe we don’t realize it, but it seems that we’re repeating the mistakes our parents made with us. My own son is in high school, and I try to pay attention and notice when something is up and I hope I’ve been doing a good job in that. But boy, oh, boy, do I ever feel ashamed now.

ok, you guys are scaring me. (LOL!! :roflhard: )