Remember to tell your teenager that I love you – TherapyTribe

This year has taught us many lessons. He taught us that the people we love can die unexpectedly and without us having the chance to say goodbye to each other. We have had over 225,000 mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, spouses, grandparents and friends who died from the coronavirus this year (CDC). Public health experts believe that number could increase significantly before the end of the year. Most of these people died without their families being present and without their families having the opportunity to say goodbye.

This is not where it ends. Every year 5,000 teens are killed in traffic accidents and 400,000 are injured (CDC statistics). These injuries can range from cuts and bruises to a paralyzed person. Also this year, there was a significant increase in the number of teenagers who died from suicide (second leading cause of death) and accidental drug overdoses. Again, many of these teens died without being able to say goodbye to their families and their families never had the chance to say goodbye.

The holidays are here and one of the main vacation moments is family. This is the time to express to each other how much we love and care for each other. However, as this year has taught us, we don’t always get the chance to truly express how much we care about getting caught up in our daily lives. As a psychotherapist specializing in treating adolescents, I have seen this happen to parents and adolescents. I saw unexpected deaths and the grieving person very upset because she never got a chance to say how much she loved him.

A mother experienced this fact when her son committed suicide. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among adolescents. After that, she wrote the following poem to her son. She also encouraged all parents of teenagers to remember to say “I love you” to your teenager. You might not get another chance. Considering that we are dealing with a deadly virus that is out of control and many teenagers have car crashes during this time of year, I thought it was appropriate to publish his poem.

I love you

How can you?

They asked you,

How can you?

But you couldn’t answer

Since you weren’t there.

Why would you want

They asked you,

Why would you want

But their questions fell on

The deafest ears in the world.

I loved you!

They told you,

I loved you.

But they told you too late

Through their tears.

I’ll miss you,

They told you,

I’ll miss you.

And in death now

They hold you dearer.

The point is, don’t take the risk. Since you never know what can happen and many teens feel their parents don’t care, take the opportunity while you have it to express your feelings. Don’t spend the rest of your life regretting never telling her I love her or wondering if that would have made a difference.

Dr Rubino is a psychotherapist from Pleasant Hill who specializes in the treatment of children and adolescents. He has worked with adolescents for over 20 years. To learn more about his work or to contact him, visit his website at or his Facebook page at or its podcasts on Spotify or Apple or Audible.


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