I want to draw your attention to something kids are doing that scares me half to death. Now don't stop reading and please, please don't turn away thinking "not my kid!" While it's entirely possible that you were different, some kind of super genius or something who never did anything foolish, I was an IDIOT when I was a teenager and I think most kids are. So let's get real. Keep reading. It will only take a couple of minutes and it could save a life.
You have likely heard of some version of this "game." Kids call it the "pass out game" or the "choking game." Today a friend, getting frozen yogurt after school with her son, saw a kid doing this on the lawn next to the store. When she asked her son if he knew what the boy was doing he said yes, he did and that some of the kids at his school were doing it on a field trip today. Some are apparently posting about it on Facebook ( do you need another reason to "friend" your kid and read daily?) Kids choke themselves with ropes or ties or their own hands and others are pushing down on their chests until they hyperventilate. They do this for the headrush that comes as the blood, which has been cut off, rushes back into the brain. Needless to say this is harmful and can be deadly. Please talk to your kids about this. Here's a website that can help.
Read it with your kid and be open to discussion.
Now I'm going to say something that might make a few people uncomfortable but it's important. Over the years you have likely heard stories of kids and even adult males strangling themselves while - look I'm sorry but there's just no other way to say this - masterbating. Sadly, this happens in part because parents are uncomfortable talking about this with their teenage sons. I'm here to tell you to get over your discomfort. When you read the GASP site with your kid, continue on and have this part of the conversation too. If your kid is tempted to do this they are going to be alone and they are probably going to use a rope or something like it. By the time you find him it's going to be too late. Please have the conversation.
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