Over with the family visiting Petersfield the other day when I noticed these two young teenagers walking along together looking serious and in very deep discussion. They then snuck off into the trees and sat themselves up on this concrete structure rolling themselves a couple of cigarettes.
Now having worked for years with very troubled young people I begin to wonder if they were perhaps struggling with a problem which neither one of them can see a positive solution to?
For example I was walking through Alresford just last week when I saw a young girl of similar age to these two. She was hunched in a shop doorway with a mobile phone clamped to her ear and with tears and black make-up streaming down her face. She was obviously very distressed about something. People in front of me however seemed not to even notice.
On the ground beside the girls feet I spotted a ventolin Asthma inhaler and a set of house keys. I stopped and walked over to see if I could help her out in any way; and to cut a long story short through hyperventilating breaths she explained her boyfriend had smashed his flat after a row with her and he had also threatened her father whom she was in the village with at the time. Not the best of days I might venture to suggest.
In the middle of me calming her down and correcting her panic a random woman then appeared and sternly asks the young girl if she knew me as she starts taking her arm and suggesting she immediately come with her. Obviously she had seen what was going on and had decided that I must have looked a bit dodgy!
After a rather long and convoluted explanation I eventually got this woman to understand my intentions and suggested she stay there with us whilst I spoke with the girls sister, who was incidentally hanging on the other end of the phone during this whole event.
This done we all waited until the father and her sisters arrived, and I placed her into their vehicle reassured that they were all reunited again. In the interim I then discover her boyfriend had previously given her an ultimatum to go with him and leave the company of her family. The young girl though had been unable to make this choice and so he had then driven away at speed along the high street with his car tyres screeching as he did so.
So when I saw these two youngsters rolling a couple of cigarettes I just hoped that whatever may have been on their mind at the time was not going to cause either of them to suddenly hyperventilate or require the intervention of a caring and genuinely well meaning individual like
Seriously though I find that it’s becoming increasingly more difficult for blokes these days when young women or small children are experiencing problems or are visibly distressed…I always find myself questioning what would be the best thing to do?
Do I try to help or take the easier option and walk on by?