"I Am Not Scared" Project
D. and E. are classmates in the 2nd grade class of senior high school. During the academic year they got into romance and E started a pregnancy. D and his family – his parents who are public servants and his nine years old brother- wanted E to stop the pregnancy because they believe that the baby will cause problems in their future course. Parents of E. who are freelancers, keep a shop in the town, are very close to their religious authorities and consider abortion as a crime. They convinced E to keep the baby while continuing her studies at school and at the university, since they will assist her in raising the baby. Now, one year later D and E. C are still students in the high school and they are already parents. D has acknowledged the child, but anyone of them is living with his family. D and his parents visit E. and the child every Sunday.
D. is indifferent to the school lessons, has many absences from school, his behavior inconveniences teachers who characterize him insolent and rebellious. E is a student with targets, good performance, kind and loved by her teachers and classmates. The relationship of two students at school is typical to indifferent.
E. has a sister, M, who attends the first grade class in the same school. M started well her studies, but during the year she started to present indifference to learning, withdrew more and more to herself, is unwilling to interactions with peers. She is often sad and generally showing signs of resignation. Shortly after the Christmas holidays M attempted suicide in the toilets of the school, where she was found with a note beside her: "Do not look for why. The important thing is my sister to be fine”. She transferred to the hospital where she treated with the necessary medical intervention and after two days she came back to school. She asked the Director to talk to a specialist from the Youth Advisory Station.
She revealed that the D. extorted her that he will leave her sister if she had not sexual relationships with him. She gave in and periodically he was determining the place and time of their meeting to get together sexually. After some time he threatened her that he would tell about all to her sister if she did not use drugs with him. When extortion arrived at this point, M was attempted to suicide. She had never talk about all these to anybody but now she was asking for help trying not to hurt her sister.
The counselor informed the Director of the school and the parents of both students. D was referred to the Addiction Treatment Centre with his own agreement where he entered a dry treatment program. A few months later D stated repentant for his actions and M. stated relieved by course of the events. Both asked nothing to be learnt E. and her family. The three students now have completed their studies at school and studying in higher education.
The explanation that M has attempted suicide due to sexual frustration seems to be convinced the school community. The Director and the teachers did not investigate the issue further. M by herself asked the Director to help her to talk to a counselor from the Youth Advisory Station.
The counselor from the new advisory station informed the Director of the school and parents of both the students’ situation.
D was referred to the Addiction Treatment Centre and he entered a dry treatment program. M received the intervention and support of the counselor.
No any other authority was involved in the case because M was negative in this.
The impact of the incidents on school community is multifaceted. In such cases an important role can be played by the director and teachers if they are close to their students and inform on time their parents and counselors or specialist on each case. The most common problems in school communities nowadays are learning disabilities, health problems, domestic or financial problems, bulling, violence.
The director of the school has to inform the teachers and discuss with them on how to support these students. Also, he has to discuss with the students. A continuous feedback with all stakeholders (parents - teachers - students) is very important. Within this framework he has the potential for substantial assistance by advising students himself or referring to specialists.
Additionally, he can prevent worsening problems or deal with them effectively. Generally, the director must maintain a substantial catalytic attitude on issues related to problems with students, even though they have no direct association with school life.
Victims are both the two sisters in this case. The 'main' victim is the M who appears as a person who is influenced by the opinions of others and standing alone unable to make her own decision on her serious personal problem. M shows individual insecure, fearful and guilt. She preferred to attempt suicide to put an end to this story than to talk about the events and cause problems to her sister. The fact that she voluntarily asked for professional help is very important.
D. shows an insolent and rebellious nature and the his profile is violent and aggressive.
His behavior against M probably shows accumulated anger, revenge and blackmail for the whole family that forced him to become a father without his wiling. His actions against M probably have the effect of drugs.
The other students of the school after the attempt to suicide of M expressed surprise and indignation. They could not understand why she acted this way. They considered unthinkable that M attempted suicide because of a sexual frustration.
The teachers in the school when informed about the events and their causes, took the opportunity to make conversations with their students about general subjects such as:
- The role of the family and whether it can transmit the new moral values, especially when in many cases the parents themselves adopt attitudes and behaviors that deviate from those who profess. Emphasis was paid to the indifference of parents, some times, to the needs of their children and the distance between them during their communication.
- In particular psychology that governs young people who try to discover their identity, develop their personality and claim a share of life in a world unstable, rapidly changing and in a society that has lost its way.
- The need to inform students on issues of sex education, drugs, etc. This information can come either through formal education or by various social agencies and have for example the form of seminars.
Teachers consider important the need for mechanisms and institutions for psychological counseling, information and guidance to families and parents on issues of education and adolescence.
The Director of the school seems to have handled the incident with discretion. He knew that E was pregnant, was awarded about the relationship between D & E and the situation with their families. After being informed by the Youth Advisory Station, he informed the parents of D and M for the events discreetly. He also informed the teachers.
Maybe he could be closer to the students involved in the incident, but he preferred to keep some distance since the parties did not want public disclosure of the issues
D’s family are public servants and at first they wanted to stop E’s the pregnancy because they believe that this was the result of a frivolous adolescent relationship and the baby will cause problems in the future development of their son
Parents of E. are freelancers, they are clinging to their religious authorities considering abortion as a crime, and persuade E to hold the baby while continuing her studies at school and after that, since they promised to assist in raising the baby.
The relations between the two families eventually become standard, as D has acknowledged the child. D with his parents visits E. and the child every Sunday.
His parents supported the D during the detoxification. The parents of the two girls supported their daughters
The two families did not want more publicity, consistent not known other actions and attitudes
There was not a counselor at school to face the problem. A social worker who was informed about the incident later commented that:
The motives of the perpetrator:
The difficulties of the young man character (audacious and disorderly, according to the teachers) in conjunction with the promiscuous adolescence form a profile of the abuser violent and aggressive.
In this case the victims are both the two sisters. In the case of the unwanted pregnancy, there is no blame for rape. His behavior against M. shows an accumulated anger, revenge and blackmail for the whole family that forced him to become a father.
The attitude of the victim:
M’s attitude shows a person affected by the opinions of her parents without self-motivation and determination of her serious personal problem . M shows individual insecure, fearful and guilt, forming a personality vulnerable to exploitation. The fact that she voluntarily asked for help from a specialist indicates a start of self-motivation and mobilization.
The Director correctly referred the case to a special unit for detox, but matters concerning the the baby and the relationship between the couple and the two families should be referred to family counseling and therapy. Ms should be referred for individual therapy.
The role of a counselor in the school:
All of the above, would be stepped and faced according to a effective way, if a special counselor was working in the school.
It is a positive implication the fact that despite the serious difficulties both the student and the two sisters continue their education. The support of the school and to the families seems to be effective in young people lives. On the other hand there is an uncertainty about the outcome of the issue concerning the baby as well as concerning the method of scientific support for the new parents.
This case study is typical of the case highlights the importance of supportive structures in education system, such as the Youth Advisory Station. It's a very difficult case that requires cool, tricky manipulation. The slightest error in handling could lead to unforeseen situations, very painful for young people involved in this story.
The director acted properly. In particular:
1) He called the Youth Advisory Station. He did not proceed to frivolous, impulsive, actions and amateur handling.
2) He did not discussed the case with the teachers of the school, which would lead to disclosure of the issue, and probably to students’ punishments, totally inappropriate for the particular case
3) He made the necessary steps to support psychologically all the three students (all in this case they all need support)
4) He supported the pregnant student to continue attending school (the fact that now is a pupil, means that actually she didn’t stop attending the lessons but for a time period she was taught in private)
This incident is a complex issue associated with all stakeholders’ socialization and lifestyles adopted by young people nowadays.
The modern sirens are too many and state institutions of socialization in different directions may create an ideological confusion difficult for young people and especially teenagers to crystallize their value system that will protect themselves problems and extreme dilemmas.
Axes to approach the problem may be:
a) How the modern family (parents' work schedules - burden courses for children - minimizing communication years - diametrically opposed views on issues taboo)
b) Media: viewing sexual relationships among students, more and more younger
c) The widespread use of alcohol by young students
d) The provocative sartorial choices, especially underage girls.
The sociological approach of the incidents leads us to many roads and trails of thought.
All involved students are in need of psychological support. We all need a second chance. Before we convict our students let listen to them. Let's show them the path of love that protects against extreme situations
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I Am Not Scared Project
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