A Different Kind of Hope for Brokenhearted Parents

crying_eyeHope. What is that to you as the parent of an addict, self-injurer, gay, mentally ill or incarcerated child (or any other issue)? In the past, my main hope was for things to “work out”; to have my prayers answered (all of them); to see my dreams fulfilled; to have my daughter healed, whole and well in every way.

Are you like me? We hope our child will:

Stop abusing alcohol or drugs.

No longer be attracted to the same-sex, or want to be transgendered.

Learn to cope without harming themselves.

Will My Child Ever be Okay?

Help for Depressed Parents

pure joyIs the heat chipping away at your confidence and trust, causing you to give in to worry and fear for your son or daughter? Do you wonder if they’ll ever be okay?  Will you ever have a normal life or a loving relationship with them? Have you lost count how many times they’ve been arrested, gone to rehab or relapsed? Have you forgotten how many times they’ve been hospitalized or were in the psych ward?

There have been huge arguments. So much chaos. So much despair. Their lives appear to be drying up and fading away.

It may feel like yours is, too.

Where Can Troubled Parents Turn for Help?

When You Need Rescuing as Much as Your Child

This is a reposted blog written by Cru staff, Gina Butz from her website on June 7 of this year. My added comments are italics. I think you’ll love her writing and her heart.












“There are people in the world who like to be the rescuers of others (many parents of addicts and those who struggle with mental health challenges do this really well). There are others who look for someone to rescue them. (Many times I want that!) And there are people like me, who think, “I don’t need rescuing, thank you very much.” (Are you in denial?)

Except I do. I very much do.

I try, though. Oh, how I try.

An Encouraging Word for Weary Parents

Can there Really be Purpose from our Pain?

As much as you may not want to hear it, there can be purpose from our pain. Yes, even from this dark time you might 512px-Our_Lady_of_La_Salette_(crying)be going through with your son or daughter. I remember a time when I couldn’t imagine it. Really? How could there be any any good purpose from this? I wondered.

For me, one of the purposes ended up being something I never imagined possible – I wrote a book about my story with my daughter, Renee, (now 29) and it has been published. In two of my recent blogs I talked about the movie (To Write Love on Her Arms) that was made about her. That was surreal. And now, in just 2 days, on July 19th, my book will be released! That’s super surreal. The title is You Are Not Alone: Hope for Hurting Parents of Troubled Kids (and that’s any age).

I wrote this book for you – for your breaking heart. You Are Not Alone can be ordered now through our website hereYouAreNotAlone (1) from Amazon, or Barnes and Noble online. Ordering through our website benefits our ministry, Hope for Hurting Parents.

Recently, Girlfriendit Radio – out of Arizona – had me as a guest on their program to promote it. Here’s what they had to say afterward:

“. . . her story is powerful and practical, especially for parents dealing with a troubled teen.
She is the mother of a formerly troubled daughter, Renee Yohe. Reneé was the suicidal, addicted, depressed, self-harming girl whose situation led friends to start the well-known nonprofit TWLOHA (To Write Love on Her Arms). Reneé’s life was also portrayed in the 2015 Sony Pictures release by the same name.
Her new book, You Are Not Alone: Hope for Hurting Parents of Troubled Kids comes out this month. You might want to take a look! We love passing along resources that can help us all be better.

Here’s the link to the podcast to hear more from Dena: http://ow.ly/2eH43021CDo.

From Amazon: “I can’t tell you how to keep your child from making mistakes. But I can equip you with facts, tools, and resources. I can show you that you can survive this nightmare. I can encourage you that one day—somehow—you can thrive again.”
—Dena Yohe, You Are Not Alone

You would go to the ends of the earth for your child. So, if your teenager or young adult is in the midst of crisis due to self-injury, mental illness, depression, bullying, or destructive choices, you probably feel broken, powerless, and isolated.

Dena Yohe wants you to know you are not alone. You are not a bad parent. And you are going to be okay.

Dena has been where you are. In You Are Not Alone, she speaks from experience as she offers healthy ways to maintain your other relationships, suggestions for responding to friends who don’t understand, and ideas for keeping up your emotional and spiritual well-being when your world feels as if it’s crashing down.
cactus flower
It is possible to find purpose in your pain, joy beyond your fear, and hope for every tomorrow.

Includes prayers, exercises, websites, and other helpful resources.

We’re all a little weary, aren’t we? Please order a copy of my book today. I believe it will help.

Tough Times for Parents with Broken Hearts

I'm Sorry

aprilyohe_hopeforhurtingparents-6Thinking about the recent events in Minnesota, Louisiana and Dallas I believe there’s a message here for us as hurting parents. We have a lot in common with these recent tragedies.

We, too, ache for change.

We, too, reel from the shock of what has happened.

We feel the never-ending ache. We stumble around in a daze. We drift through our days in a stupor of grief and loss.

Fear and worry drape our slouched shoulders. We wear those emotions like a heavy cloak on our backs.

More Comments from Renee Yohe’s Mom about the To Write Love on Her Arms movie, Part 2

Encouragement for Parents of Wayward Children

The To Write Love on Her Arms movie , a Sony pictures film, has been out a little over a year now. Today’s post is the second in a two-part series answering the most frequently asked questions about Renee, her parents, David, and the movie. You can rent or purchase it from Netflix, itunes, Amazon, twloha.com, or Walmart online. The movie deals with sensitive subjects: addiction, mental illness, self-injury, suicide, and sexual trauma.

For individuals who struggle with self-injury, counselors recommend they watch it with a supportive community and make time to talk and process about it afterward or it can trigger them.

Part 1 of this series was posted on Wednesday, July 6th.

Were there any other hobbies besides music that helped Renee cope with her inner pain?

Thoughts From Renee Yohe’s Mom about the TWLOHA movie

Most Frequently Asked Questions

TWLOHA movie12The To Write Love on Her Arms movie has been out over a year now. It’s surreal for my husband and me to see our ourselves in a movie. We’ve heard from friends all over the country who’ve watched it and even a few who saw it on international flights.

Comments have been overwhelmingly positive. The movie was filmed four years ago and took a while to make it to the public. One of the producers and lead character in the movie, David, died three years ago. The movie exists because of his strong belief that this story needed to be made into a motion picture. Why? So that it could impact more people with its powerful message of hope.

We thank God for you and your ability to dream big, David!

I’ve been asked a lot of questions about the movie. You can rent or purchase it from a variety of sources: Netflix, itunes, Amazon, Hulu,  twloha.com, or Walmart online. Rated PG-13 for language and content, the film deals with sensitive subjects: addiction, mental illness, self-injury, and sexual trauma. For individuals who actively struggle with self-injury, counselors recommend they watch it with a supportive community and have opportunities to talk about it afterward so that it won’t trigger them.

I thought I would answer a few of the most frequently asked questions today and then several more in my next post on Sunday, July 10th.


When did I first realize Renee struggled with self-injury?I Don't Love My Child Anymore She Said - Or Does She? - Anchor Of Promise

Hurting Parents Freedom Song

For You on Independence Day

How can parents whose children are hurting and in bondage from drug or alcohol abuse, self-injury of all kinds

Dance of Zalongo

Dance of Zalongo

(eating disorders, cutting, burning), pornography, same-sex attraction issues, gambling , suicide attempts, and mental illness find freedom?

What do these parents need to be free from?

They need to be free from every destructive emotion associated with their child that’s destroying their well-being, robbing them of their sanity: Fear, anxiety, worry, guilt, shame, despair, depression, anger, resentment, grief and more.

Personally, finding my freedom didn’t come from doing more, lecturing more, helping more, reading more (books or the Bible  – although reading did help and I do this all the time), or trying to fix my daughter more.

It wasn’t from worrying more, yelling more, crying more, or talking to a counselor more. Although talking to a counselor did help and I certainly needed to express my feelings as part of my grief journey.

My freedom came from something else.