Tactical Training Specialties

Happy New Year!

Joan and todd burkeWelcome to a New Year and all of the wonderful and incredible opportunities that lay before us!  Stick with me for a moment…I’m not on drugs.  We have all had a very difficult year, and while we still have several issues to deal with, we are glad that 2020 is in the rearview mirror.

Mike Rowe shared on You Tube, “If you want to feel better about the species, and the country, and the people in it, then you gotta look at something that makes you feel good.  If you want to stop feeling BAD then you have to spend a little less time with the headlines, and the cable news, and maybe your own newsfeed.”  Watch this 3:40 minute clip that I appreciated and I know you will like it too.

It’s hard to find the selection of firearms and ammunition we are accustomed to.  You can get ammunition if you are attentive to when stores are receiving deliveries and you shop with more than one supplier.  It requires patience and legwork right now.  We are offering several skill development classes that are budget-friendly and require no ammunition.  Practical Pistol Skills will be held on January 16th, Crisis Casualty Care is on February 6th, and Low Light Pistol Skills is a NEW course offered on March 13th.

Come and train with us and let us give you another reason to smile and feel better!  Check out these first quarter offerings:

Click here for CCW1, February 13, March 6, April 10, 2021

Click here for Practical Pistol Skills, January 16, 2021

Click here for Crisis Casualty Care, February 6, 2021

NEW! Click here for Low Light Pistol Skills, March 13, 2021

Click here for CCW2, May 1, 2021

Positive Energy: Mike Rowe shared on You Tube, “If you want to feel better about the species, and the country, and the people in it, then you gotta look at something that makes you feel good.  If you want to stop feeling BAD then you have to spend a little less time with the headlines, and the cable news, and maybe your own newsfeed.”  Watch this 3:40 minute clip that I appreciated and I know you will like it too.

On behalf of my family and our dedicated cadre of coaches…Thanks!

In This Issue:

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Did You Know…

  • Once all villagers decided to pray for rain.  On the day of prayer, all the people gathered, but only one boy came with an umbrella.  That is faith.
  • When you throw babies in the air, they laugh because they know you will catch them; they do not fear being dropped.  That is trust.
  • Every night we go to bed without any assurance of being alive the next morning, but still we set alarms to get up.  That is hope.
  • We plan big things for tomorrow in spite of zero knowledge of the future.  That is confidence.
  • We see the world suffering, but still, we get married and have children.  That is love.
  • On an old man’s shirt was written a sentence, “I am sweet sixteen with 64 years of experience.”  That is attitude.

Truly, have a happy day and live your life with these six examples in mind.  Remember – good friends…true friends…are the rare jewels of life, difficult to find and impossible to replace!

Personal CCW Insurance

by Todd Burke

This is an important subject with important information.  With the level of turmoil in our world today, I suggest you research and understand this subject, and I want to help.  Please note that what I share with you today is different from what I believed and promoted only three years ago!  Whether you carry a firearm or not, having personal use-of-force or “CCW” insurance is a subject you should burn some glucose on and consider.

Culture and Beliefs Turned Upside-Down: What is Happening Today?

Agents in government and members of our judicial system are perpetrating unlawful and malicious actions against law-abiding citizens.  Two recent and well-publicized examples include:

  1. Mark and Patricia McCloskey, June 28, 2020, St. Louis, MO. The initial prosecution was by St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner. President Trump and Missouri Governor Parson both went on the record declaring Gardner’s actions as wrong.  Missouri’s Attorney General Eric Schmitt filed a legal brief in support of dismissing the case, writing that prosecuting the McCloskeys is a violation of their right to bear arms, and their right to defend their property under Missouri’s “castle doctrine” law.  But prosecution continues.
  2. Kyle Rittenhouse, August 25, 2020, Kenosha, WI.

These two incidents show that law-abiding citizens can act reasonably, in good faith, and according to state and Constitutional law yet still be arrested, imprisoned, and prosecuted…or should we say persecuted?  Good people are increasingly finding themselves involved in incidents, which may or may not involve firearms, creating a need for legal assistance and representation in the face of unlawful and malicious arrest, imprisonment, and prosecution.  Note that as of today, the McCloskey and Rittenhouse incidents are still pending in court and no final disposition has yet been made.

Statistics and Facts.

  • In 2019 there were approximately 15,300 shooting deaths in America. (cbs.com)
  • In 2019 there were approximately 29,500 shooting injuries in America. (cbs.com)
  • More than 15 MILLION people are licensed to carry, but this does not account for those who lawfully carry without a permit or training (Crime Prevention Research Center)
  • Each year, there are over 40 MILLION lawsuits filed in America. (onelegal.com)

Social Considerations and Aggravating Circumstances.

  • “Defund the police” movements
  • The current mass exodus of police officers in record numbers.  Read the article “Police Departments on the Brink.” 
  • Autonomous zones, encampments, or take-over areas such as Portland, Seattle, Minneapolis, Nashville, Asheville, and the University of Missouri-Columbia (2015-16).  Remember the thug enabling UMC media professor Melissa Click?
  • Malicious and politically motivated prosecutors and politicians such as Kim Gardner in St. Louis
  • Local governments ignoring or supporting criminal assaults and rioting by calling it “protesting” or a “summer of love” (Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, 6-11-2020)
  • The media supports dissent and actively conducts fear campaigns. Whether it is Covid, politics and the elections, the weather, murder hornets or flying monkeys…honest journalism is gone and evil continues to be infused in the mainstream.

What I Used to Believe.

In the Fall 2017 edition of The Shooting Times, Dale Roberts and I addressed the common question of “Do I Need CCW Insurance?”  We shared information, links, and suggestions with you.  Here is a quick review, and these points remain valid today:

  1. You are legally justified to use deadly force if you are in imminent fear for your life or the life of another, AND you believe the force you are about to use is necessary to stop the criminal’s life-threatening behavior. (RSMo. 563.031.2)
  2. Missouri statutes state that the appropriate use of force in self-defense is an absolute bar to both criminal prosecution and civil liability. “Notwithstanding the provisions of section 563.016, a person who uses force as described in sections (Use of Force in Defense of Persons) 563.031, (Use of Force in Defense of Property) 563.041, (Law Enforcement Officer’s Use of Force in Making an Arrest) 563.046, (Private Person’s Use of Force in Making an Arrest)  563.051, (Use of Force to Prevent Escape from Confinement) 563.056, and (Use of Force by Persons with Responsibility for Care, Discipline or Safety of Others) 563.061 is justified in using such force and such in fact shall be an absolute defense to criminal prosecution or civil liability.”

In other words, once the court determines you have justifiably used force in self-defense, then all prosecution must halt, and you are immune from civil liability.  This does not mean that you ‘cannot be sued.’  Anyone with the filing fee can file a suit against you.  But under the example above, that lawsuit will be promptly “thrown out.”  The state law requires it.  In addition, you have the right to seek reimbursement of your attorney fees.  Knowing that they might have to pay your attorney’s fees for you keeps most folks from filing frivolous lawsuits.

  1. If you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, your policy may offer you some protection. Look for the “wrongful acts” clause in your homeowner’s policy, and check for “intentional acts,” “self-defense,” or “reasonable force” clauses. It may only apply to what happens at home.  Many people do not know what their policy covers…do you?

But even with the above measures currently written as law, egregious and unbelievable actions are being taken against people who appear to be acting lawfully and within reasonable bounds.  Three years ago, I believed that acting reasonably and in good faith, knowing the law, training frequently, and actively assessing my environment to avoid trouble was enough.  I did not believe that I needed specialized insurance.  I now realize I was wrong.  My perspectives and beliefs have changed.

Life Insurance vs. Life Assurance.

Dealing with an emergency, particularly a threat to our lives, must be something we address in advance and prepare for.  My services to you are mostly in helping you prepare for what to do before you are forced to take “the final exam.”  This life assurance process includes activities such as:

  • Learning situational awareness and how to perform threat assessment.
  • Training and preparation based upon correctly perceived needs; respond appropriately.
  • Developing mental and physical skill sets and being able to perform necessary skills.
  • Evaluating and obtaining the correct tools and hardware for the job.
  • On-going evaluation and adjustment based upon performance and needs, learning that “we don’t know what we don’t know.”

As a companion to these skills and abilities, we also need life insurance.  This means having resources in place after “the final exam” has happened, realizing there remain significant repercussions to be dealt with.  This is more than just surviving or avoiding being killed.  This means emotional, physical, mental, social, and spiritual well-being, and may include:

  • Commercial insurance to deal with the loss of “stuff” such as after an accident or fire.
  • Social support of friends, family, and clergy who will protect and support me in a safe place and help me avoid daily scrutiny and stalking by the media.
  • CCW or use-of-force insurance that is specific to addressing threats such as those we outlined at the beginning from St. Louis and Kenosha.

Seeing the injustices that some in authority are inflicting upon citizens and communities, the increased chance of having to defend yourself or someone else, along with the increased chance of being arrested or sued has led me to believe that CCW insurance is a necessary tool in my kit.

Introducing The Firm I Recommend: Legal Shield

In the past three years I have had memberships with three different companies.  All offer benefits, but I have found one is “best in class” and provides the best and most comprehensive services for the best price.  Legal Shield is not just insurance.  Membership means you actually have an identified attorney on retainer.  In fact, not only am I a member, but I feel so strongly about including this protection for my family that I have also become an associate for this company that features:

  • 48 years in business with over 4 million members.
  • 39 law firms in the United States and Canada.
  • When you join, you will have a network attorney identified to you in advance.
  • Team attorneys have an average of 22 years of experience.
  • Your membership prepays for services which means your attorney’s focus is on serving you, not billing for hours; they are paid by the company.
  • You can speak with an attorney on an unlimited number of personal legal issues for advice. Attorneys return calls in 4 hours or less and are on-call for emergencies 24/7.  Important note: unlike other companies, when you call Legal Shield, you will speak with an attorney.  This means ALL of your conversations are protected by the attorney-client privilege.
  • A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau
  • An app on your phone makes access and contact easy.

For your membership fee of less than $40 each month, examples of covered firearms-related issues include:

  • Home intrusion and self-defense
  • Sport, hunting, and accidental discharges
  • Preparation and trial defense
  • Setting up an NFA firearms trust
  • Coverage in ALL 50 STATES (other companies charge extra for states other than your place of residence)
  • Coverage includes your spouse and minor children also for no additional charge

Services are not limited to firearms and self-defense issues.  A full complement of additional legal services is offered as part of the plan (not offered by other companies):

todd's phone showing legal shield app

  • Personal estate planning and real estate issues
  • Consumer finance, billing or debt disputes, arguments with contractors, IRS issues
  • Traffic accidents and traffic tickets
  • Workplace discrimination, sexual harassment or unemployment claims
  • Family law, divorce, child custody and adoption
  • Civil suits and trials

Access to information about your membership benefits, as well as instant contact information to your personal attorney, can be kept on your phone with a downloadable app.  Here is a picture of my phone with tabs that allow me to call for assistance from my law firm, began the process of writing a will, submitting a legal question, submit a document or traffic ticket to be reviewed, or open other legal document forms.

If you already have a firearms plan with another company and wish to keep it, but you want the additional non-firearms services Legal Shield offers, you may purchase the Basic Legal Shield plan for $24.95/month.  If you do not carry a firearm or firearms are not a part of your tool kit, the Basic Legal Shield plan is a great option.  To include legal protection as a firearms owner, add $12.95 which makes your premium $37.90/month.

If you would like to become a member it would be my pleasure to sponsor and enroll you.  The application for Legal Shield is two pages and I can meet you in person and fill this out together, or I can e-mail attach it to you and we can discuss it by phone.  I will then forward your application to Legal Shield to begin your plan and benefits.

Stay safe, prepare and remain vigilant, continue to train, and be well.

Low Light Pistol Skills:


We have been talking about this for some time.  With ammunition difficult to obtain, and outdoor winter weather conditions being less appealing, now seemslow light pistol skills todd burke tactical training specialties prevailing in low light like the perfect time to launch this new program.  In the fall we offer CCW3: Prevailing In Low Light which takes place in the afternoon and evening.  We usually only offered CCW3 once each year.  But since statistics show that most armed encounters take place in diminished lighting conditions or from 6 pm to 6 am.  This new course will better prepare everyone who carries a firearm to respond correctly in challenging conditions.

Saturday, March 13: Introducing Low Light Pistol Skills!  This training is held indoors, no ammunition is required, and it is 4 hours in length (0800-1200).  We are glad to partner with the Hallsville Baptist Church and they allow us to use their multipurpose building that is HUGE!  Since there are no windows, it allows us to work in a variety of lighting conditions including complete darkness.low light pistol skills tactical training specialties todd burke hallsville missouri green valley rifle & pistol club

This class will allow us to practice similar skills we offer in CCW3 and not only get more repetitions, but also practice deploying in a real-world environment such as a church.  We will also have the benefit of hallways, both large and small rooms, doorways, and varied lighting conditions in different areas.  One of the most often heard comments from graduates of our trainings is, “I didn’t know what I didn’t know!”  This is particularly true when deploying a firearm and a flashlight, what we fondly refer to as a “high intensity white light fighting tool.”  There are 8 specific principles for fighting in low light.  All of the base skills we train in CCW1 and CCW2 are valid and apply, and there are additional skill useful for prevailing when the lights are low.  Handling a flashlight and a pistol at the same time requires an additional skillset and repetitive motor skill drilling.

Another benefit we planned for and are pleased to announce is that all skill levels are welcome!  This course is appropriate for the new pistol handler as well as the seasoned veteran or professional first responder.  There is no prerequisite training required for Low Light Pistol Skills.  In order to take CCW3 in October you must first low light pistol skills todd burke tactical training specialtiescomplete our CCW2 training in order to verify that you have the skills to safely continue forward to higher levels of training.  Low Light Pistol Skills allows everyone at any level to begin preparing for an engagement in low light and building the necessary skillset to operate in this type of environment.

Priced at only $100, this course is budget friendly and there are no additional expenses such as ammunition.

CLICK HERE to enroll in our charter flight for Low Light Pistol Skills on Saturday, March 13, 2021!

Courage: Handshakes, Smiles, and Hugs.

By Mike Martin

I recently spoke to a friend who said throughout this time of social distancing and mask-wearing he has come to realize that he misses three key things in his life:  Handshakes, Smiles, and Hugs.   My daily goal in life is to impact the lives of those I interact with and lead in a positive way.  I seek to have a positive influence on others, an interaction or encouraging word that leaves them feeling inspired, or empowered and good about themselves.  I realized, as I pondered what my friend told me he was missing, that we have lost a sense of courage in this time of dealing with the COVID virus.

I further thought upon how leadership plays or might factor into this as well.  In leadership, leading must always be about others and those you are leading.  Not about the leader and not (a sole focus) on the results.  Leadership is about those you are leading, their successes and their achievements, their betterment, and their well-being.  It is not about the leader or what the leader can achieve through others.  As those being led achieve goals and success, they contribute to the overall success of the team.  As each team member excels and achieves, the entire team achieves their goals and success, but it is an end-result of the leadership focusing on others.

To do this, it takes courage on the part of the leader.  Everyone is calling for ‘the results’ and believe me, I understand and agree that results are important. However, my conviction is to exercise courage as a leader to remain focused on those I am leading.  Focused on their success, their well-being, and their betterment as a person and professional as a result of my leadership – my aim is to fulfill my daily goal in each person I lead or interact with.  Courage says, I am going to give focus to those I am leading, never losing sight of the results, but trusting that through investing in those I lead, choosing to die to myself in order that they may flourish, the results will not only be accomplished but will far surpass expectations.

Courage in leadership is a mindset of always being about the team, first.  Then, recruit team members who possess and demonstrate a team-first attitude.  Through courage, the leader lays aside personal goals or aspirations and replaces them with motivation to see those you are leading achieve success and be better because of your leadership.  Courage in leadership is a constant focus on others and modeling a constant awareness to all you lead, that everything is done for others and for the team and every decision each person makes affects the team and its members as well.   This courage in the leader and the attributes of it just described, then releases courage in team members to do the same – to be about the team, to realize everything they do is for the team and others and to be aware that their decisions impact the team.

This is being a positive role model for team members and others around you.  All that we do as a leader and our actions should inspire others to believe “they can”.  A leader must possess courage and that courage looks a dangerous or adverse situation in the face and boldly proclaims to everyone, “On Me”!  Thus, releasing a sense of confidence and assuredness in everyone under your leadership that we will go through the danger, overcome the adversity, and fight through it all, successfully, together.  Courage is contagious and when courage comes from the heart of the leader it creates an unstoppable force in the team and its members.

Courage is what was displayed by Mother Teresa, who chose to die to herself, in order to serve and care for those that society would rather ignore existed.  Courage is what allowed President Ronald Reagan to be known as one of the most effective leaders of our time and at the same time, known for how he cared for others and inspired them.

Courage is what fueled Rosa Parks, who said she only wanted to be remembered as someone who wanted to be free so others could one day also be free.

So courage.  Let’s be courageous leaders.  Let us be leaders who are focused on those we are leading – their success, their betterment, their achievements, and the inspiration.  Let us be courageous leaders that in turn release courage in those we lead, to face any situation with the certainty of success.  Let us be courageous leaders that teach those we are leading to be first about the team and others around them, all the while, knowing the results remain an important component of what we do, and through our others focus, surpassing expectations with the results we deliver together.

Every day I live I want to make the lives of others better.  I want to release in them inspiration and potential they did not know they had.  I want to speak encouragement and life into them and see them accomplish everything they set out to.  Every day I want to lead with Courage.  A handshake, a smile, and a hug…they are needed these days more than we will ever know.  Let us be courageous leaders and provide these things to those we lead as we remain focused on them and focused on the team.  After all, as we said at the beginning, leadership is all about the people we are leading; their needs, and their well-being.

National Christian Protector’s Conference – Rescheduled

March 25-27, 2021 in Kansas City, Missouri

The second annual National Christian Protectors Conference is dedicated to equipping and inspiring protectors to live a courageous faith.  This conference will be packed with many tactical training sessions, world-class keynote speakers and nightly worship.  Sessions include Church Security, Compliance and Control, Low Light Firearms Applications, Child Protection, Ministry to First Responders, Lockdown Procedures, Crisis Casualty Care, Pastoral Protection, Tactics and Firearms Handling, and more!  For more information and to register for only $99.

Click here for website.  Lower rates are available for “early birdies” and groups of 4 or more!  I look forward to seeing you there!

Train With Us!

CCW1: Carrying a Concealable Firearm

February 13, March 6, April 10, 2021, 0730-1600, $100


CCW1-1 at Tactical EMS School Essentials for Tactical Medic Certification Paramedic Emergency Medical by Tactical Specialties and Todd Burke in Columbia MO

This  8-hour program which will qualify you to obtain your permit for carrying a concealed firearm according to Missouri State Statute. This is also an excellent class for those wanting to learn or refresh firearms safety and basic marksmanship skills. Our coaches are credentialed operators and instructors with significant experience and we enjoy helping others learn. Our course is approved by the Missouri Department of Public Safety – Police Officer Standards and Training.

Crisis Casualty Care

Saturday, February 6, 2021, 0800-1600, $150


crisis casualty care tactical training specialties CAT tourniquet Todd Burke and Greg Delo

Concepts are based upon the military model of Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TC3) and the most current information and case studies from the United States military’s Special Operations Command (SOCOM). We have offered this course to police, fire, and EMS professionals across the country for several years. This is much MORE than a first aid or “stop the bleed” course. We will address how to recognize and immediately treat common traumatic wounds and medical emergencies in the minutes before advanced life support arrives or in the event that additional help will not be available for some time. CPR is an important and valid skill but due to time constraints it is not included in this day of training.

CCW2: Principles of Personal Defense

Saturday, May 1, 2021, 0800-1600, $175


practical pistol skills at hallsville baptist church on january 20, 2018 all handling and no live fire

This dynamic and skill-oriented class addresses the realities of combat and the skills necessary to effectively fight and defend yourself with a firearm. We use a building-block approach to ensure that participants learn safe, proven, and tactically sound methods of handling and manipulating their firearm, and they are comfortable with how their firearm operates. We ensure that this occurs through repetitive drilling with constant positive and constructive feedback.

Practical Pistol Skills

Saturday, January 16, 2021, $100


search for additional threats tactical training specialties hallsville missouri todd burke practical pistol skills

This class is 1⁄2 day requiring no ammunition.  It is cost-effective and completely skill-oriented! We focus on motor skills, how to make your equipment work, and how to move in a crowd with your pistol in hand. We will show you practical applications, use scenarios and case study examples that have actually happened. You will practice threat assessment and awareness skills so you can make tactically correct decisions while under duress and in a compressed time frame. Participants should be in good cardiovascular health and capable of moderate physical activity, mostly walking. We will provide you with a study guide and an after-action summary for practicing and training at home.

The Super Belt – Now Sold Internationally!

The Super Belt : Indestructible Mens Belts, Lifetime Warranty, Made in USA, Strongest BeltI have been wearing a Super Belt, made right here in Mid-Missouri, for about 3 years.  I use if for both IWB and OWB carry and I have been very happy with it’s performance and wear.  It has several characteristics that uniquely qualify it as the perfect stabilizing platform for mounting a holstered pistol upon.   A couple of my friends who are U.S. Secret Service agents are currently wearing this belt on protection assignments.  Ellis Benus is the owner/operator of The Super Belt and he has made a short video explaining exactly what The Super Belt is, options you can choose, and why you should have one – it’s a fun watch!  You may also take advantage of a 10% product discount if you enter the coupon code “tacspec” at checkout.  Good stuff!  Watch Super Belt video here!

Visit https://TheSuperBelt.com/

Folks We Trust and Do Business With…and You Should Too!

ADVERTISING – THIS IS HOW WE ROLL…Many have asked how much it costs to advertise in The Shooting Times.    The answer is ZERO.  I don’t currently accept paid advertising.  The folks you see in our newsletter are people I know and trust and do business with myself.  They share the good word about me and I do the same for them.  Same kind of barter thing that helped get our country going.  Still works today.  So when you see an ad, a business card, or a referral in The Shooting Times, they didn’t pay for it…they earned it!  Thanks everyone!

Custom Hearing Protection

What Ya Say custom molded hearing protection by Cathy Ergovich preferred by Todd Burke tactical training specialties and Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club

Columbia’s Indoor Firing Range

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Carhartt, Liberty, YETI, Luminox, Surefire and more!

500 East Broadway, Columbia, MO 573-443-2565

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Columbia’s Indoor Archery Range

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The Indestructible Super Belt For Men Lifetime Warranty Made in America Belts

Exercise Your First Amendment Right…Let Us Hear from You!

Take a minute to respond to what you have read, learned, agree or disagree with.  Use the “leave a comment” section at the bottom.  The authors, staff, and coaches who offer our training and education services value constructive feedback, and we want to keep this FREE newsletter going in a direction that honors God, our country, and our families.  Many man-hours go into the construction of each edition. We invite you to share your thoughts with us!

Parting Shots

“Dear Mom and Dad”

author unknown

Dear Mom and Dad,

I know I am not easy to live with right now. Quite frankly, you are not easy to live with either. Here are some clues from my end about what is going on…

I need to figure things out for myself.  I’m thinking hard these days because I want to understand what I believe about politics and religion and what’s right and what’s wrong. I’m becoming a thinking person – a real adult – and to do that I’m testing a lot of ideas. Some are probably silly, and I’ll move past them. But I’m not you and you can’t tell me what to think or even what to believe. I’d like to bounce ideas off you, but we’ve got to be able to have civil discussions. I don’t want to argue and I don’t want you to tell me what to do.

My friends are important to me.  These are the people I will be living with all my life and I want their appreciation and respect. Some friend or other might one day become the person I decide to marry. So when you dismiss my friends and say unkind things about them, that makes me sad and angry. I know these people – they are good people. You don’t know them and you don’t have a right to judge. So at least be polite to my friends. Show me that you care about me by being gracious to the people I care about.

I’m afraid of making mistakes and mistakes seem to be everywhere.  I will tell you right now, I’m terrified a lot of the time. I wonder how I will ever figure out how to have a job and make enough money to have my own place. I don’t know how I’ll be able to live on my own without you, but I know that I will, in just a few years. So many of the rules of adult life are hidden from me. I don’t understand how to stay out of trouble and trouble seems sometimes to follow me around. This all makes me tense and anxious. It makes me jump to conclusions and fight back when I realize later that getting angry was a stupid thing to do. So, I’m sorry. I know you are only trying to help. I do need you.

When I make mistakes, I need your help to fix them.  It used to be that trouble was just trouble at school or with the kids in the neighborhood. Nothing serious. Now the kinds of trouble I can get into – that kids I know have got into – are the kinds of trouble that puts people in jail or in the hospital. I already feel like I’m in over my head and when I get in trouble, I feel the waters closing over me. I need your help. Please help me. Don’t turn your back on me. Even though I may have ignored you a lot lately, I really need a hand to pull me out of the deep water and get me back to safety. Be there for me, no matter what.

I really do love you and someday I’ll be able to tell you that again.  Mom. Dad. I love you. Right now, with all that is going on in my life and with the friction that seems to be between us these days, I know I don’t say that enough. I do love you, though, and I want us to get along. Tell me that you love me. I need to hear it. Don’t attach any conditions – don’t tell me “I will love you if you do what I want.” Don’t extort my love by saying “if you loved me you would do as I ask.” I love you. Please love me. Please love the real me.

Thanks for listening.


Your Teenage Daughter or Son