Karli new green puppet hugged by Elmo.

Sesame Street’s New Character Has a Mom in Addiction Recovery.

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This is pretty neat. Considering I personally know a lot about the issue having dealt with it growing up and unfortunately my kids had to deal with the issue as well. Sesame Street has also recently introduced a homeless character living in a shelter as well as a character with autism.

“There are 5.7 million children under age 11, or one in eight children, living in households with a parent who has a substance abuse disorder in the United States. ” Sesame street stated.

Man, that really makes you realize the epidemic proportion and wonder what the impact it will have on our youth as they grow.

The new character’s name is Karli, and she is a 6 year old girl in foster care because her mom was going through some “things”. Those “things” were recovery for an unknown addiction.

“The trauma of parental addiction can have lasting impacts on a child’s health and wellbeing, but children can be incredibly resilient; the effects of traumatic experiences can be mitigated with the right support from caring adults like the parents, caregivers, and providers this initiative targets.” Kids are definitely resilient, you can always turn it around.

I know it’s personally devastating to children, even if they don’t always show it. This is a family problem, it affects everyone around the addict. “Addiction is often seen as a ‘grown-up’ issue, but it impacts children in ways that aren’t always visible. Having a parent battling addiction can be one of the most isolating and stressful situations young children and their families face,” said Sherrie Westin, President of Social Impact and Philanthropy, Sesame Workshop.

I’m glad they show that families can turn it around. So many addicts out there just abandon their children and don’t look back. They claim it hurts them being away from their kids, and I know it does, but they have to fight for themselves and their children. Sadly that isn’t always the case, and regardless Sesame street is giving hope to children, and some parents too. “Sesame Street has always been a source of comfort to children during the toughest of times, and our new resources are designed to break down the stigma of parental addiction and help families build hope for the future.”

Children can understand more of what their parent is going through, and maybe having it explained to them in a way they can understand, they can give hope to their parents. I know personally there was nothing more powerful than my children in my sobriety. My daughter coming to me and telling me she didn’t like me smoking cigarettes, and being “gone”, really put a fire under my butt.

“Children often think it’s their fault; they feel shame, embarrassment, guilt, and loneliness; they may feel invisible. It takes special effort to start important conversations and answer children’s questions. But parents, teachers, caregivers, and other caring adults can comfort children and guide them through difficult moments. With love and support, the family can cope with the challenges of addiction together.” said a source.

There is hope for every member to get through this hard time. Thank you Sesame Street, we can all fight this epidemic one day at a time, one family at a time.

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