Spotting the Bad Ones: the Most Important Skill Your Kids Should Know

As a parent, there are so many things on the list of what you want to impart to your kids. Great vocabulary, how to food-shop frugally, how to stand and look them in the eye when you shake hands, there are so many things big & small.

However, there’s one thing that can torpedo DECADES of otherwise-excellent parenting, and that can boil down to just one person that can permanently ruin their lives. The kid that covertly leads yours into drugs, the “respected” professor that kills the career your kid has worked their life to attain, the awful choice in boyfriends, there are so many crossroads in life that are defined by being able to accurately spot and deal with genuinely BAD PEOPLE.

But how do you spot the bad ones?

I feel like this is one of the singularly most-important skills one can make sure one’s kids have, and it’s tough to overstate that.

There are a few resources you can use which can help your kids rapidly get a handle on being able to know who to trust, and who their spidey-sense should be alarmed by. One of the single most amazing of such is this video, which I’d encourage you to watch yourself – and then watch with your kids.

This video very quickly became one of my oldest kids’ favorites, I think they’ve asked to watch it like 10 times. It became especially interesting as they transitioned from homeschool to an amazing outdoor school, and then to a public charter school. Middle School for kids can be brutal, and my daughter had her first taste of what a real died-in-the-wool bully was. Spotting where people are at, but also to be able to spot the really good ones is just so vital it’s hard to overstate.

I would also have kids watch this video here:

It’s an introduction to a subject which is, in my opinion, one of the most practical and vital areas of study available at Churches of Scientology.

There is a whole online course available to anyone for free here, that goes over the basics covered in the videos above, as well as the critical aspect of “OK, you spotted someone rotten – NOW WHAT?”

It’s too often that someone might have someone they know is toxic to their lives, but don’t know what to do about it. Fortunately, there is a lot of guidance to be had there from the course above. That course, also, is purely an introduction to the subject.

There is a whole 4-week course one does in a Church of Scientology or Mission called the PTS/SP Course – How to Confront and Shatter Suppression. In this case “PTS” stands for “Potential Trouble Source” and “SP” stands for “Suppressive Person”. If you’ve watched the videos above, I think you can get an idea of what a Suppressive Person is, but to better define each, here is this (from the glossary of the course):

Suppressive Person: A person who suppresses other people around him (treats them as if they have no value; prevents them from progressing, achieving or succeeding or makes them less certain, less confident or less effective in any possible way).

PTS: abbreviation for Potential Trouble Source, somebody who is connected with a Suppressive Person who is invalidating him, his beingness, his life. The person is a Potential Trouble Source because he is connected to a Suppressive Person. Potential Trouble Source means he is going to go up and fall down. And he is a trouble source because he is going to get upset and because he is going to make trouble.

Again – look at the first video above, and one can see that all manner of trouble can befall someone with an antisocial personality in their midst who is bent on suppressing the people around them.

But being able to accurately spot those around you who are well-intentioned people and conversely those who mean you (or your child) long or short-range harm and then knowing what to do about it is just critical.

But taking it a step further, I think this is an amazing piece of usable interpersonal technology to get up to speed on as a family, and then have a lot of family discussions about.

And it’s not overstating things, that such conversations could save a life.

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