If your child has experienced the loss of a parent, or someone very close to them, I hope this episode will help. My guest in this episode is Mark Lemon, an award-winning children’s author who talks openly about his own grief after the murder of his Dad.
A bit about Mark Lemon
Mark is the host of the brilliant podcast, Grief is My Superpower, where he chats with his guests about their losses, in the hope of helping children and families come to terms with their own bereavements, and find a way through sadness.
He has also turned his own tragedy into a massive positive, by writing The Magical Wood, a book for bereaved children. The book has recently received recognition from Prince Harry, who was just 12 – the same age as Mark - when his mother Diana also died in shocking circumstances.
The article Mark wrote for The Guardian that was to be the beginning of his advocacy for bereaved children, and ultimately the drive towards his award winning book.
How Mark has opened up his social channels to allow his followers a place to see his sadness, and to share their own.
What happened to Mark’s father, and how the death of a parent can shatter a child’s world.
How teenagers often box up their emotions, finding it difficult to open up, and how important it is to support them to do that, rather than grief being channelled in more troubled ways.
How important it is for teachers and parents to support children through tricky behaviours while they're processing trauma.
How Mark has coped with trauma and grief - finding purpose through passion, and a career in music. How doing things they love can help a reluctant teen to find purpose and to start to talk about their feelings.
How important it was for Mark to step away from his father’s murderer, rather than dwelling on anger and revenge.
Mark also told me that you never really get rid of grief - have a listen to his brilliant way of describing how his own grief differs day to day, and how he manages that.
Where to connect with Mark
You can also now buy The Magical Wood as an audiobook, with £2 from each sale going to palliative, neurological and bereavement support charity, Sue Ryder.
Support for bereaved children
More teen mental health resources
Thank you so much for listening! Subscribe now to the Teenage Kicks podcast to hear all my new episodes. I'll be talking to some fabulous guests about difficult things that happened to them as teenagers - including overcoming a stammer, becoming a young carer, and being hospitalised with mental health problems - and how they overcame things to move on with their lives.
I'd love it if you'd rate and review the podcast on iTunes too - it would really help other people to find it. You can also find more from me on parenting teenagers on my blog Actually Mummy, and on Instagram and Twitter @iamhelenwills.
For information on your data privacy please visit Podcast.co. Please note that I am not a medical expert, and nothing in this blog or in the podcast should be taken as medical advice.
Teenage Kicks Podcast
Welcome to the Teenage Kicks podcast, where we take the fear out of parenting - or becoming - a teenager. The internet is full of parenting advice, from when you feel those first baby kicks, until they reach secondary school. And then it stops. No one is talking about teen parenting problems; so we’re going to.
Essential listening for teenagers and their parents, as well as those who work with young adults; Teenage Kicks has teen mental health at its core, and each episode will empower young people to tackle their own problems, and give parents the guidance to know how to help them.
Each week Helen speaks to real individuals who've experienced the issues that young people are dealing with now, and they don't sugar-coat it. From exam nerves and career worries to issues around sexuality and consent, we get tips and advice from expert guests who understand what it’s like to be a teenager today.
Helen will also be chatting about tough teenage problems like cyberbullying and self-harm, drugs, alcohol and teenage pregnancy, all with a heavy dose of reality from someone who's been there and made it through to the other side.
Teenage Kicks for Parents:
As parents, we understand some of our kids’ struggles, but let’s face it, it’s been a while, and things have moved on since we last panicked over a detention! Teenage choices today can seem alien to their parents because teenage life has changed so dramatically since we were young. Teenage Kicks helps you unravel topics like social media, sexting and teen self-esteem so that you can figure out what your child needs support with, and what’s just normal teenage behaviour.
Teenage Kicks for Teens:
Teenagers and parents come at things from different angles, we know. But teenage life can be challenging, and the support of your parents can make navigating tricky dilemmas easier. Teenage Kicks guests aren’t adults who’ve read a textbook; nor are they heavily invested in your day-to-day safety, like your mum and dad. They are real people who’ve been through what you’re dealing with, and they have the inspiration and advice you need to handle it yourself.
Join Helen each week as she chats to a different guest about topics affecting teenagers in 2020, and helps parents and teens to open up a dialogue that will make life easier to navigate on all sides.
You'll also find me chatting about teen parenting here:
This series of the Teenage Kicks Podcast is sponsored by Blue Microphones, who gave me the fabulous Yeticaster mic for all my recordings. It's really straightforward to use, and gives me great sound quality without too much editing.