Parents in Marathon County are getting an inside look at what life is like for their kids. A new documentary, "Marathon Co. Teen" premiered publically Tuesday.
"There will be tears shed today and it's a good thing," said Aaron Ruff, of the Marathon County Health Department.. "There are some really touching moments. Some really... honest moments where individuals are sharing some real struggles that occur in their life."
The documentary which highlights a day in the life of local teens was presented at an Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) Partnership meeting. Healthy Marathon County, local school districts and a local videographer are behind the effort to bring attention to adolescent adversity.
"When you're in a sad state, one little pick can feel like a whole wound," said the video narration. "I used to cut for a short while. That's when I was extremely stressed when I was going back and forth between households. Sport and school can be a lot and then when you add a family issue on top of that's like the trifecta right there, or maybe there are money issues at home."
It touched on controversial issues that high schoolers struggle with, including alcohol and drug use, racism and depression.
The video narration continued, "I think personally we're all still trying to find ourselves. 'you're fine,' or 'you're just freaking out, it's just your hormones,' and like even if it is, I think that they should still be understanding and realize that's how we feel."
The organization said it used results from the 2015 Youth Risk Behavior Survey taken by students in the area as a springboard for discussion, but spoke with teens to put faces to the statistics.
"There are some really touching moments. Some really, like I said, honest moments where individuals are sharing some real struggles that occur in their life," said Ruff.
"These videos really evoke a lot of emotion but I think in the end, it really evokes hope because that's something that we all need. As we get older, sometimes we lose sight of that and these kids really instill that in us," said Melissa Moore, Drug Free Communities Program Coordinator for Marathon County.
The documentary has been shared with local school districts so they can share the message with students and parents.