A: Thank you for writing in with your question. It is obvious that you care for your sister very much and want to help her. However, all your best wishes in the world won’t help her unless she is willing to help herself. Some teens sail through adolescence easily, but most don’t. It can be a very difficult time fraught with conflict and “growing pains.” It could be possible that her truancy issue will be the catalyst for her to get some professional help or for your parents to get some help on how best to deal with her negative behaviors.
She may be struggling with depression or some other psychological problem, but as a sibling, your best bet is to focus on being a good role model and a safe, nonjudgmental confidant. The rest is up to her and your parents. I hope things get better soon.
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts