Who are they to turn to if they find they can't speak to their parents?
A new venture called 'Voices in the Middle' seeks to address this. It's a new and unique campaign run by young people, for young people, seeking to provide peer support for children going through the separation process. As the name suggests, it seeks to give young people a voice when they may not otherwise be heard.
The project is part of 'Kids in the Middle', a non profitable organisation providing expert individual and group counselling for separated or divorced families. Kids in the Middle has over 35 years of experience, but 'Voices' is a new and exciting venture because it is run by a Youth Council, whose members are all between the ages of 14 and 22.
The project already provides online help to youngsters through the content on their website and social media, where young people can add their own stories, tips and advice about how to cope with their parents' separation. It also seeks to make young people aware of the resources available to help them, be it counselling, child inclusive mediation, or therapeutic services.
The goal of Voices in the Middle is to reach a point where every young person going through parental separation is aware of the service and how it could help them. Not forgetting the parents wondering how to help their children, the website includes help for parents on how to talk about separation.
Voices has come to the attention of family mediators across the country who are live to the difficulties faced by children and young people going through a parental separation. Here in Scotland the project is being championed by members of CALM Mediation Scotland and it is to be hoped that the campaign goes from strength to strength.
One particular comment on the website embodies the ethos behind 'Voices':
"Don’t feel like anyone is judging you or your family, because all people want to do is help. There are people…you can contact, ordinary teens just like me that will always be a shoulder to cry on. Stay positive, you’ll get through."