Friday, December 18

Teen Stress

Tips to enrich your teen's life!

Teen stress is underrated and often overlooked in the face of other more obvious issues that plague the teen being. Teens appear fearless and mostly move around with an air of bravado, especially if in a group. But they have their fears and insecurities. This may not be what a full-grown adult might be wrestling with, nevertheless these fears are real and seem catastrophic at the time. May be some day, they might laugh over it between discussions of what works for thinning hair and how to get rid of that beer belly. Well, here's one such anecdote, exaggerated beyond reason, of course.

Sushi or Me….

…there I was holding the piece of raw fish, perky, pink and clenched between chopsticks that seemed like miniature weapons of destruction. I stared in horror at my hand frozen, suspended half-way to my face. It would not move any closer.

The kindly lady smiled benignly and said, “Eat… good for you.” The gentleman continued to stare, his face an inscrutable mask. The voice in my head was getting really annoyed now and yelled, “Just take that stupid piece of fish, dip it in the stupid sauce, put it into your stupid mouth and shut it!”

My jaws remained clenched. My brain buzzed with all the well-meaning advice given by Mrs.Smythe before the trip. “If you refuse their hospitality you show disrespect. Now that’s something we do not want. During your week of home-stay, you eat their food, follow their life-style and keep smiling if it kills you. But I’m sure you’ll enjoy it all.”

Nothing would induce my mouth to open. My stomach started growling in annoyance. I could understand it being upset since I hadn’t eaten a proper meal in three days. You can’t live on Mars bars for that long.

I’m sure it echoed around the small room because the Japanese gentleman now shifted his stare from my face to my stomach and kept it there. In spite of the language and culture barrier we were communicating perfectly. I could almost hear him scream at me to just eat the damn food and be done with it so he could eat his and be gone.

The lady continued her litany, “eat…good for you.” My stomach growled longer and louder, and my mouth clenched tighter. The voice in my head turned to a deafening crescendo, “Everything depends on that slimy piece of fish. Eat it or else…disrespect…dishonor…remember the Pearl Harbor! Australia and Japan declare war! New Zealand and North Korea take sides!

And it’s all because a silly school boy wouldn’t eat his fish! Pop! I’d had enough of this rebellious teenage body that wouldn’t take orders and jumped right out. I saw me sitting there, a forlorn sixteen year old , with a frozen look of horror on his face, eyes dazed and transfixed on a piece of fish that by now had succumbed to the blatant rejection and was listlessly sliding down the pincers that held it.

There really was no time to think. The smile on the lady’s face had frozen in place and it hid a barely controlled urge to grab the boy’s hand and shove the fish into his mouth, chopsticks and all. A mental image of the Japanese gentleman reaching for a sword in slow-motion prompted me to act quickly before he made sushi of us all.

I grabbed the offender’s nose with my left hand and yanked as hard as I could; then using the palm of my right hand I knocked the elbow of his frozen hand upwards. The fish flew from its perch and landed in his open mouth and vanished out of sight. And that’s how a third world war was averted.


  1. Many parents are not able to provide emotional support to their children which are the main causes of stress. Constantly, parents are creating unrealistic expectations in children which often spur stress in their offspring. Telling your teens that you love them is not enough at times. You need to express your love in a way that they can appreciate.

  2. Hi Karen, I guess seeing things with a bit of humour helps as well.

  3. Ya so true. Topics are quite interesting with lots of handy tips…


If any of this rings a bell, even a distant one,please do let me know all about it.I would love to hear from you. Thanks!!!