Parenting is hard. Many would argue it is one of the hardest jobs on earth that you don’t get paid for. We want to make sure our children are provided for and safe. One West Virginia father has a system that all parents will soon implement.
Ben Fulks is a father to not only his kids but to teenagers who struggle with addiction. One day during their weekly meetings, Fulks asked the group of teens if they had ever found themselves in an uncomfortable situation?
“They all raised their hands. Every single one of them,” he said. Fulks, who battled alcoholism himself as a teen, recollected what it was like to be their age and in those situations. I still recall my first time drinking beer at a friend’s house in junior high school—I hated it, but I felt cornered. As an adult, that now seems silly, but it was my reality at the time,” he explained in a blog post.
He didn’t want his own children falling into a similar situation so he created what he calls the “X-plan.” The plan is simple and ingenious in its own right. When his kids find themselves in uncomfortable situations, they are to text a family member just one letter, the letter “X.”
The plan, he explains, is a no judgment plan. Nobody will be subject to criticism or ridicule. Here’s an example given to Scary Mommy of the script that a family member should follow if they get the X text.
“Something’s come up and I have to come get you right now.”
“I’ll tell you when I get there. Be ready to leave in five minutes. I’m on my way.”
By putting the reason of their leaving on the parents Fulks says it makes sure the child doesn’t feel embarrassed for leaving a situation they didn’t like.
Fulks’ blog post has been viewed over one million times and has parents and teachers loving the X-plan. Others mentioned their family had a code that they did with their kids and it worked wonderfully.
With his plan, Fulks hopes to see the world’s young enjoying life instead of behind bars. He hopes that the next time he ask at-risk teens if they had been in uncomfortable situations they couldn’t get out of, there is no one who has to raise their hands.