Re: Scouting for Life, Continued
Mary Lee Foley (mlfoley@EARTHLINK.NET)
Wed, 12 Nov 1997 19:22:35 -0500
Bruce Major wrote:
> Tom Petrik wrote:
> We seem to agree
>> Depends upon who "we" are. I don't agree, for several reasons:
>> 1) Who are "those leaders most likely to be affected by suicide"?
Bruce, of course, you can't predict it, but the statistics quoted here
on the list recently emphasize that young males are at risk. We (BSA
Scouters) deal with many young males. Therefore, I propose that we ALL
fit the category "most likely to be affected."
> 2) This is so far beyond the expertise of most people, it would be impossible to address.
I don't think anyone is proposing that we all become mental health
experts, just that we learn to identify warning signs and what to do /
what to avoid / who can be called on for more aggressive intervention
> 3) The fatality rate of life is 100% ... Do we have a training program to deal with every untoward experience life offers?
> No. We leave it to the experts in mental health and counseling.
See my previous comment; it applies here, too.
> Remember the leadership skills, especially "knowing and utilizing the
> resources of the group". The resources for dealing with events like this
> are out there and easily identified. The BSA is not one of them. But Scout
> leaders can certainly access community resources for specific events or to
> meet special needs.
Yes! Exactly! But if we don't know what the resources are, how can we
access them? Related note: I was a Den Leader for almost two years
before I knew about training. I didn't know that I had a DE or a Unit
Commissioner to lean on; I didn't know about Roundtable and PowWow; I
didn't even know that the Scout Shop had all kinds of printed material.
So I didn't use my resources. Once I was trained, I became a *much*
better Den Leader. Because of that, I now believe in getting and giving
all the training I can handle. Perhaps it affects my judgment, but *I*
think that affect is positive.
> Remember also what Dirty Harry said: "A man's got to know his
Bruce, I believe that's really all we're proposing here: know what to do
whenever possible. Maybe you could think of it as "first aid for the
In a physical emergency, you apply first aid, defined as "the first aid,
the first help, or the immediate care and help given to someone who is
hurt or suddenly ill." You learn what care you can apply to a body in an
emergency. Sometimes the problem is minor; sometimes you mean the
difference between life and death by accident.
In a mental emergency, you can apply the equivalent. This can be the
difference between life and death by suicide. Some training here can
help you just as first aid courses help you.
We hope we never need any of it, but don't you feel better knowing
you've been trained, just in case? Be prepared! :-)
Mary Lee Foley, email@example.com
I used to be an Eagle
Troop 71, Pack 71 & District Committees
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City