Just a few weeks ago a dear friend of mine reached out to a few of us ladies with concerns of her cousin. Just a young girl of only 18, she had come into contact with some very shady characters and they had introduced her to a lifestyle that was not appropriate for anyone…let alone a child. Now, we have all been there so do not sit in judgement as you read this because if you do then you are no better than those who impacted so negatively this young girl’s life. Cassidy, just 18 wanted to be a teen and of course that entailed doing things that our parents do not often approve of. At 18, I was a mess. As I look back, I honestly do not know how I am alive. I dabbled in the teen drinking, I drove after drinking, I had sexual experiences that I knew I shouldn’t, I stole a few things, I lied….the list goes on. If none of this happened to you then I applaud you for your perfection. However, most of us are not perfect. With that being said once you reach your late 20’s, your 30’s and beyond you should have a grasp on what life is about. The partying days should be out of your system and you should be aware of the role model you are for the younger generations. If a child reaches out to you, you should extend a caring, guiding hand. In Cassidy’s case a grown woman who had her own problems with a very bad lifestyle decided it would be a little more fun to become this 18 year old girls bestie….her party buddy….her roommate. Who does that? Instead of understanding that the child needed guidance and was only looking to fit in somewhere, she pulled her into a nightmare. Children and young people are so very impressionable. They look at others and they long to be like them. They want to lead a fun filled life but sometimes the risk that comes along with this are just way too serious. Cassidy was not a drug addict. She was a young girl who had just graduated high school and was looking for her place in this big world. She wanted friends and she wanted to be loved. Just like a teenager, she did not feel that her parents knew what was best for her. Looking back, I can remember telling my parents they were ruining my life. I remember telling them that I hated them and I just wanted them to leave me alone and let me experience life. You understand, right? You were there once, don’t lie. Cassidy had a good life, a good home, and a family that loved her but that was blinded by the lights of a bigger world. I will not go into details now as there is an investigation going on and I would never say anything to foil an investigation. What I will say are facts. When you are an adult you do not lead a child into danger. When you are an adult you tell a child what is right and what is wrong and you do NOT ever entice them to do things that could possibly harm them. You act like a protector rather than an attention seeking, misguided person who is trying to relive their younger years through the life of an innocent child. When they say they do not want to participate in anything you have to offer and they show fear, you take them home. You take them to safety. You never harm a child nor do you allow anyone else to do so even if that means putting yourself at risk. I want to say this, as Cassidy’s family is grieving the loss of their daughter, their niece, their sibling, their cousin, their friend…there are those out there who are pointing the finger of blame at the victim and at the family. Who does that? Let me tell you who does that. People who have no soul, no conscience, and no moral code at all do that. People who are addicted to drugs themselves or one who might be trying to cover up what they know about the story (crime), they act in this manner. People who care, people who understand, people who know that very bad things happen; they do not act in such a manner. People who understand that parents can teach and they can love but they cannot prevent tragedy; they do not act in such a manner. In a time like this, I think we need to remember Cassidy as a girl who had a big heart, a girl who just wanted to be a part of something, and a girl who was misguided and taken advantage of by adults who knew better. She was a girl who trusted people when she shouldn’t have. This 18 year old girl died of a heroin overdose, which at this point is still questionable. 911 was NOT called and those with her drove her past a medical facility and on to another hospital (where no one would know or see them) and dropped her out of the car like a useless piece of trash. This young girl may have had a shot to live but due to the negligence and cruelty of drug addicts who did not want to “get caught” she died. Only days ago on Cassidy’s facebook there was a post which had pictures of little girls dressed up playing. Her status….”for when I have a little girl of my own”.
Guess what? That will never happen.
Parents love your children, guide them, teach them, and let them know you will always be there. Monitor who they are around and put your foot down when you have to. You have 17 years with them and then at 18 they can make their own decisions and choices. What you do is very important but understand the choices they do make in life are not your fault. We do what we can and shelter them with all we have but sometimes it just isn’t enough. There are wolves in sheep’s clothing out there who will lie and make life look so much better than what they have. They are impressionable and sometimes they will take the bait. We just have to hope and pray that when we can no longer make their decisions for them, that they make the right ones. Tonight before you lay down go look at your children sleeping in their beds. Look at the innocence on their faces. Hug them tight and whisper into their ears how much you love them. As you look at them, let that image burn into your mind because some day very soon it will be a memory. They are only little for so long and the innocence begins to fade away. Be thankful for what you have because tonight Cassidy’s parents do not have that privilege. May they find some peace in the days, months, and years ahead. No parent should ever have to say good bye to a child. May those who were there that night grow a conscience and decide to do what is right. May those who are pointing fingers go take a look in the mirror. ❤