My Life is Worth Living is a mental wellness and suicide prevention series produced by the Cook Center for Human Connection in collaboration with Wonder Media. Each episode models positive coping skills and positive mental wellness techniques. In the Resources tab you'll find this episode in the following languages (in order): English, Spanish, Portuguese, Mandarin, and Japanese.
Character Synopsis: Kyle is a 16-year-old high school sophomore, and a talented soccer player. He has plastered his bedroom walls with his favorite “footballer”: Diego Maradona. Kyle longs to be more charismatic and sure of himself like Maradona, and especially like his father Mario, both of whom Kyle sees as strong, confident near-perfect heroes. Kyle finds himself more of an introvert than his idols, which he often sees as a great flaw in his character. Since starting high school, Kyle has struggled with feelings of inadequacy and although he has friends on the soccer team, he often finds it hard to connect with them. After making an embarrassing mistake during a soccer match, Kyle becomes the target of cyberbullying, and soon his inner voice of negativity grows louder and louder. Not wanting to burden his Dad or his friends, Kyle starts turning to alcohol to cope with his feelings when his thoughts become suicidal. With the support and vulnerability of his Dad, a friend, and eventually a therapist, he is able to gain positive coping skills in order to deal with his negative thoughts.
Episode Synopsis: After Kyle finally shares about his negative thoughts and alcoholism with his father Mario. It’s Mario’s turn to share a painful part of his life with his son. His years after the service were a constant struggle with PTSD and negative thinking, and Mario had hoped to shield Kyle from that dark history. Now Mario realizes that he didn’t need to be a perfect role model for Kyle – he just needed to be someone he could talk to.
In each My Life is Worth Living lesson plan, you will find partner and class discussion prompts, writing prompts, a group activity, and a family resource. This lesson is appropriate for grades 6-12.