Bert Fulks created the plan as a means to give children “a way out.”
“I get to spend an hour each week with a group of young people going through addiction recovery. Yes. Young people. I’m talking teenagers who are locked away for at least six months as they learn to overcome their addictions,” Fulks first explained.
He added: “I’m always humbled and honored to get this time with these beautiful young souls that have been so incredibly assaulted by a world they have yet to understand. This also comes with the bittersweet knowledge that these kids still have a fighting chance while several of my friends have already had to bury their own children.”
When he asked them about whether they were in situations they weren’t comfortable with and stuck around because they didn’t have a way out, they all raised their hands, he said.
As Fulks wrote on his blog, “I still recall my first time drinking beer at a friend’s house in junior high school—I hated it, but I felt cornered. As an adult, that now seems silly, but it was my reality at the time. ‘Peer pressure’ was a frivolous term for an often silent, but very real thing; and I certainly couldn’t call my parents and ask them to rescue me. I wasn’t supposed to be there in the first place. ”
This dad’s ‘X Plan’ is a genius way of keeping teenagers safe https://t.co/kqAAGsO8bi
— Metro (@MetroUK) March 1, 2017
He added that with the so-called “X Plan,” his own children have a way out. If his youngest son texts “X” to either one of his parents, his mother or father calls him right away.
“In short, Danny knows he has a way out; at the same time, there’s no pressure on him to open himself to any social ridicule. He has the freedom to protect himself while continuing to grow and learn to navigate his world,” Fulks said of his son, Danny.
Fulks continued that there is one caveat.
Danny, he said, doesn’t have to reveal the details of the incident to his parents.
“The ‘X-Plan’ comes with the agreement that we will pass no judgments and ask no questions (even if he is 10 miles away from where he’s supposed to be). This can be a hard thing for some parents (admit it, some of us are complete control-freaks); but I promise it might not only save them, but it will go a long way in building trust between you and your kid,” Fulks said.
In his blog post, he added that if it “somehow gives just one kid a way out of a bad situation, we can all feel privileged to have been a part of that.”