Running away from home is increasing day by day. This is very common in the western civilization but its trend is increasing in our society as well. Media has a major role in this. The conditions depicted in movies prompt today’s youth to run away from home because they see it as an improvement. Runaway does not only include running away from home, but leaving one job and going to another, wife leaving her husband to go to home and leaving the country, etc., all these are included in runaway. According to the National Runaway Checkboard, about 2.8 million children run away from home every year. Some of them return within 24 hours, but there is still a large number who never return home. Often when someone intends to run away from home, he keeps threatening about it from time to time. There are a few things to consider when communicating on such a sensitive occasion
Amna Javed is working as a Clinical Psychologist at Sadaqat Clinic. He completed M-S in Clinical Psychology from Center for Clinical Psychology, Punjab University in 2015. He completed his B.S from Center for Clinical Psychology, Punjab University in 2013. He is also trained in CBT, REBT, and Behavior Therapy and has an interest in Dialectical Therapy. He has also done two research projects. One project is Cyberbullying, Resilience, Psychological Distress and Psychological Well-Being and the other is Perfectionism, Indicative Self-Responsence and Destabilizing Emotions. She has also worked as a research assistant. Children who never return home are more likely to become victims of sexual abuse or sex trafficking, or become involved in some form of illegal work or drug addiction.
When most children threaten to run away, the first reaction is usually to encourage them to follow through on their idea and never come back. Telling the children that they are dear to you and that you want them and will help them as much as possible according to your ability and courage. It can save them from the quagmire of this dangerous and painful fate. Before thinking that this child is bad, start cursing him, first of all find out why he is saying this? And why do you want to do that? There are different ways to communicate with young people so that they listen to you.
How to be accountable at this time?
If your loved one or young child is threatening to run away, do you need to learn how to calm them down? The first thing to keep in mind when making someone a joke is “don’t make it”. Yes, that means don’t hold them accountable at that point because the conversation you’re going to have at that point will only make them accountable, because naturally they’ll also be looking for any cues that alert them to danger. Will so at this point you stay neutral. Because at this point when you tell someone that you did wrong, they are scared and emotionally disconnect themselves to save themselves from further embarrassment and that is why they At that time they are afraid not of the truth but of shame.
The shame here is not how they deceive you, but how they deceive themselves. That’s why it’s your job to stay connected to them so that they stay emotionally connected to themselves. It is a natural process that when we feel safe we see the truth, believe it and when we believe the truth we automatically feel empathy/compassion and when we feel empathy we are responsible. Take care, so will your loved one or child. Connect with them emotionally at that moment and ask them how much tension/stress they are feeling right now. Doing all this does not mean that they will be allowed to do whatever they want, the reality will be there and they will have to accept it.
Keep in mind that if your goal is accountability, it will only arouse fear, not empathy. Because communication is never the goal, rather it happens as a result of communication. Your goal is to connect with them emotionally and when they feel that emotional connection, they will take responsibility.
The Basic Principle is the Best: Tell your loved one that you believe in them and understand that they would never have done it if there wasn’t a bigger problem.
Make an Emotional Connection: Ask them how they are feeling right now.
See Results: Help them empathize with all who are affected. Instill this passion in them, because unless they have empathy they will not take responsibility.
Let Them Take Responsibility For Their Choices: Allow them to respectfully accept that whatever they choose to do will be their decision and they will be responsible for the consequences.
There are some important considerations and important steps to take for communication. Important points to keep in mind regarding communication. Keep the conversation open: Discuss all the issues that are driving your loved one to make this decision. Talk to you about any problem that is too difficult for your child to do. If it is difficult for you too, get help. Most of them decide to run away from home because of some reason that they feel that the solution is to run away from home. It is important for you to know whether the decision is for a genuine reason or just a no-brainer.
Young people who run away from home, even when they want to return, do not come for fear that their parents will not accept them. Promote Positive Attitudes and Speak Warmly: Holding someone accountable is the easiest thing to do, but telling someone about their positive attitudes is something that really needs to be done. Often we talk to our loved ones about their negative attitudes but take their positive attitudes for granted. It’s an easy task to dismiss other people’s feelings when we’re upset. Similarly, when we talk to our loved ones and find it difficult to talk, we tend to dismiss their feelings.
Try to empathize and ask the root cause: Young people suffer from various psychological problems, all you have to do is give them a chance to talk and listen to them. A famous author, Steven Coe, in his book Seven Habits for Affective People, describes a habit that is extremely useful, which is to first understand others and then explain yourself. But we mostly focus on expressing our point of view, rather than listening to others with passion. Similarly, the parents of the youth should understand their problems considering their age, instead of just cursing and blaming them. Sexual abuse is also a reason to run away from home, it is also possible that your child is against some of your behavior and wants to run away from it.
When was the last time you sat down with your child and asked him about his feelings?
Maybe he runs away from you on the outside but inside he really wants to talk, but he doesn’t know how to talk? Among the many reasons for running away from home is a stressful home environment, verbal and physical abuse. Build an emotional connection: When your loved one is threatening to run away, instead of scolding or provoking them further, try to improve the situation. Keeping your emotions neutral requires working on your emotions beforehand. In this situation, tell your loved one how important they are and how much you love them. It will hurt you to leave. Tell them your feelings and that it will hurt me a lot to leave your house, we can sit down and talk about it, but if you still want to go, that’s your decision, but if after leaving you If you think of coming back, you will come back without hesitation, this house is also yours and its doors are open for you.
This is a critical moment, instead of taking responsibility, empathize/sympathize. Doing so proves effective. Instead of being emotional, make the atmosphere of the house more tense/anxious. By doing this, they will be able to talk openly and easily tell where the problem is going. When your loved one makes a mistake and you don’t hold them accountable at the time and talk instead, this step gives them comfort. Many things may seem trivial to you, but they may be the root cause of the problem for your loved one. Therefore, we should work on improving our emotions at this time and should not get carried away by emotions. Talk to them when you feel you have recovered emotionally and can speak appropriately. Connect with them emotionally while talking and ask them about their stress. Talk to them about their problems. Instead of just handing out a list of all the things you want them to do.
Get down to their level, understand their feelings and ask them lots of questions. But it won’t help if your tone is sarcastic or you’re forming an opinion. Ask them why they feel that this is the only way to be happy. Feel free to ask them about their future plans/projects, what they have planned to be alone. What was the reason that they wanted to take this step? Ask them if their decision to leave home was an emotional decision or was there a full planning behind it?
Build patience: Being patient in difficult situations is the hardest thing to do, but it will help the most, because scolding, fighting and shouting never help in solving problems. Instead, it exacerbates the problem. Instead of talking to them when you’re upset, ask them to talk later or call them the next morning. You also need to work out your feelings and give them time to eat and sleep before discussing any issues. When you talk to them, express your feelings and tell them how much it hurts you and how worried you are for them. And talk in a way that shows that you want to find a solution to the problem and a solution that is acceptable to both them and you, but the basic principles remain the same.
When your loved one is running away from home, you can best help them. That support can be through your words, through your feelings, and through your actions. You can tell them that running away from home doesn’t solve the problem, it creates more problems. Running away from a cave looks good on TV and in movies but in real life it is a harsh reality that eventually creates more problems. Unconditional acceptance and love should be reflected in your words, feelings and actions and make your loved one feel that they are a priority in your life. All of these measures can make any youngster thinking about running away from home reconsider their decision.