July 24, 2024

Dear Manang,
What do I do? I recently discovered that my daughter has joined a gang. She has become secretive and has become distant. I am so busy trying to make a living to give her a better life and education nowadays because everything is back to normal, my little business requires me to leave the house before sunrise to get flowers and vegetables to sell. I get home after 6 p.m. because I need to prepare the orders for the next day. I noticed that she comes home later than me and has a different group of friends. My friend told me that she saw my daughter with two teenagers steal snacks. I tried to ask her about it but she was quiet and didn’t ans-wer me. I tried to pay for the item to make up for it but what if it becomes a more expensive item? What will I do?
Lou of Hangar Market, Baguio City

Dear Lou,
Defiance is the common reason why teenagers join gangs. Going against family rules or in your situation, resenting parental absence or neglect makes your child succumb to finding a sense of care and belonging with peers. Although, they do not really get comforted and reassured in the gang, doing other things instead of going to school and breaking the law through stealing are what they engage in. The recruitment and initiation are the critical parts of joining the group. These are often done to harm the person. You are trying to help win your child back from them by paying for her sin but what’s important is to become part of her life again. Engage her in the business or spend time with her. The money you make to prepare for her future might be useless because she might not finish high school. Gangs ruin futures. That’s the main goal – to make their recruits fail academically.
Embrace her and engage her,
Manang

Dear Manang,
Is there medicine for being absent minded? I tend to forget many details in life. I forget my cellphone, my wallet, or house keys. I get annoyed because I tend to waste a lot of time and become tardy. Is there some remedy to this? Is there medicine for it?
Wanda of Irisan, Baguio City

Dear Wanda,
The solution is forced mindfulness. The cause is distraction from different things around us and for now the cellphone, which makes us get off track. One solution according to Google is to put things back or have a common place for your keys. Put them on a hook near the door so you see it on your way out and when you arrive. Make a checklist before you leave and put it on the door. Three things on the list: wallet, keys, and cellphone. Make it a habit to look in your pocket or bag for these items on your way out. Set your cellphone alarm to remind you about appointments. We need to relearn some things; we really get old and can’t get young.
Make the list,
Manang