As of November 1, 2023, most juveniles will no longer have to register as a sex offender and be eligible to seal their convictions. Law enforcement will start removing eligible people from the registry soon and mailing letters confirming they have been removed. If you receive a letter indicating that you have been removed from the registry, please contact our office for a free consultation to determine if you are eligible to seal your offense.

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Helping your child: early warning signs of potential trouble

On Behalf of | May 9, 2024 | Juvenile offenses |

Every parent worries about their child’s well-being. You want them to explore the world with confidence, make good choices and stay on a positive path. But sometimes, knowing if your child is heading down the right path can be difficult.

Five warning signs to look out for

As a parent, you want your child to be safe and happy. However, the world can sometimes be complicated, and it can be tough to know what your kids are really going through. The good news is that there are often subtle signs that can alert you of possible trouble.

  • Changes in behavior: Is your child usually outgoing but suddenly withdrawn? Are they experiencing mood swings, increased irritability or outbursts? These changes could signal underlying issues they cannot express directly.
  • Academic performance: A sudden drop in grades, loss of interest in schoolwork or skipping classes may stem from trouble focusing, lack of motivation or even a larger issue such as bullying in school.
  • Shift in friendships: Pay attention to the company your child keeps. Are they associating with new friends who exhibit negative behavior or engage in risky activities? A change in social circle may be a sign of peer pressure or a desire to fit in with the wrong crowd.
  • Secrecy and lying: Have you caught your child frequently lying? This could indicate involvement in activities they know you would disapprove of, and they are afraid they will get in trouble.
  • Increased risk-taking: Craving for adventure is one thing, but taking unnecessary risks could be a sign of boredom, a need for attention or a way to cope with underlying emotional issues.

Remember, these warning signs do not guarantee that your child is in trouble, but they certainly open an opportunity to connect with your child and offer support.

Supporting your child to walk the right path

Always create a safe space for open and honest communication. Let them know that you will not judge them for anything they share with you. You must also be available for them regularly and have meaningful interactions; showing genuine interest in their lives can be a good foundation for your relationship.

Another way to support your child is through positive reinforcement. Focus on highlighting your child’s positive qualities and achievements. This builds their self-esteem and fosters a sense of accomplishment.

If you are concerned about your child’s behavior or suspect they might be struggling, seek professionals like therapists, counselors and psychiatrists who can provide guidance and support for you and your child.