What should I do if my child believes they are a Wolf-Therian?

There is a startling statistic that shows proof of most Therians/Otherkin/etc. finding who they are (a.k.a. “awakening”) in their early- to mid-teenage years, and another supporting statistic showing that they immediately disconnect from their families due to lack of acceptance.  This is also why many “packs” are formed in high schools, because the aspiring Therian/Otherkin believes they can only find acceptance within their own kind. 

Though we would prefer otherwise, these are statistics we cannot ignore.

Quite a few of Everwood’s members are parents, and some have also been acquainted with the Nightside and Otherkin Communities for a long time; some for over a decade.  On rare occasions, though it must be said, we have observed people using their children to gain some kind of status or claim royal titles and having their children take over as successors. 

Some choose not to wait until they reach adulthood and instead make these important decisions for them. We have also witnessed people who prey upon children use this community to find those who choose to isolate themselves because they are easier targets.  The advice within this post could help prevent these situations if you come from a place of awareness and open-mindedness. 

The reality is that your child will look into this lifestyle with or without your permission because the internet is too open these days.  The best we can hope for is that we can do our part to protect them by educating ourselves and remaining vigilant.

The following advice we can offer parents on the subject of minors who believe they want to start a journey down this path:

  1. Remember that you do not need to panic, nor is this any fault or mental illness, nor is it an automatic danger to your child.

2. Ask the child why they feel this way, and if their answer is thoughtful and coherent, consider the fact that they put in the effort and did some soul-searching.  This might be a phase, and it respectfully might not be.  It is not a disability nor a mental disorder, but if your child already has a history of mental illness you might want to consult their specialist and see what you can do to help them in a gentle way. 

Take note of their chosen Theriotype (their preferred animal), because the symbolism of that animal might give you insight into how they are feeling and what they need in their life to feel more like themselves.  Wolves, for example, represent family bonds, responsibility, wisdom, strength, and protection in many cultures.  It’s not all about hunting and killing animals which is what most people choose to see about the wolf.  Each animal has its own beautiful message to share with the world.

3. Try to accept their choice of spirituality.  It may not conform to your family’s religious practices, but I can assure you it harms no one.  Many wolf-oriented spiritual worship comes from ancient practices in many cultures around the world such as Ancient Egyptian, Celtic, Germanic, European, and even Mongolian to name a few!  Please feel free to explore our Resources section to find more information on that.  You might even find something that originated in a practice from your own ancestors. 

Therianthropy, in fact, could help your child become spiritually intellectual and earth-conscious.  Therians have a great concern of the environment and the animals within it.  This could also lead to fantastic careers that align with their passions.

4. Remind them that while they are searching for their own path, they likewise need to remain focused on basic life skills and tasks like school, jobs, learning to drive, daily responsibilities, physical activities, etc.  This will help keep them balanced and healthy.  And, if it helps to motivate them, remind them that if they eventually seek a pack of Therians, most packs look for more responsible members who have themselves together and have life skills they can bring to the pack. 

Likewise, encourage them to get out in nature more and maybe even suggest doing these activities with your family.  Hiking, camping, exploring, and learning nature skills are wonderful and healthy family pastimes. Also, volunteering at animal shelters and wildlife preserves or natural habitat cleanups teaches children about responsibility and are favored activities among Therians.

5. Take a look at our suggested reading list, as these are wonderful resources not only for the aspiring therian but also for you to educate yourself so you can form your own opinions on the subject, and speak to your child about them.  Make a point to include scientific research and wildlife observation because fact is so much more important than fiction.  Perhaps read it with them and study the topic so both of you can make informed decisions regarding this path. 

As long as the topic is not harmful, we always encourage our kids to read which is an essential skill.  Again, the theme is to let their harmless passions and interests fuel their education and focus.  (Maybe suggest theming a graduation project around their chosen spirit animal and its conservation?)

6. If your child makes a pack of other Therians at their school, again, do not be alarmed.  This is natural for those seeking acceptance for, and trying to learn about, Therianthropy.  If you are concerned, do not try to push it away. 

That will only result in your child being secretive and trying to hide everything about it which can, in turn, open the door for other individuals to prey upon their curiosity.  Instead, tell your child they can host their pack meetings at your home and offer to HELP cook and clean for it (teach your child about how much responsibility it’ll be by ensuring they do most of the work.)

If you host in your own home, you’ll be able to listen to what they talk about and maybe get a feel for their friends and their level of safety and responsibility.  If you get to know your child’s friends, you’ll be able to keep them safe should a situation arise.  Privacy is important, but the safety of the child will always be more important from a parent’s perspective.

7. Lastly, and this is the most important; until they are an adult and able to make informed decisions, KEEP THEM OUT OF THE GLOBAL NIGHTSIDE AND OTHERKIN COMMUNITIES. There are adults in these communities that CAN (not certainly, but possibly) use their age and lack of experience against them.  We have observed it firsthand and we personally believe that anyone who involves minors in the community or their packs clearly has a grooming agenda. 

The Everwood Wolf Pack, as well as the Way of the Wolf Global Community, will never participate in that.  We occasionally bring our own children to our camping trips and our meetings so they can benefit from nature and its healing properties (and get away from screens for a while!) and so they can keep each other occupied while we discuss business. 

WE DO NOT INVOLVE THEM IN PACK AFFAIRS NOR DO WE TEACH THEM ABOUT OUR PATH.  We do not accept members or teach anyone under the age of 18 and that is a firm policy.  While some “tribes” groom their children to become future successors, we never will.  

If this way of life is what your child truly wants, time won’t wane that calling.  They’ll be even more ready when they come of age and are able to make these decisions at the right time in their lives.  For now, don’t discourage or dishearten them; rather be patient and help your child make informed choices and properly educate themselves on the subject. 

If you’d like further advice or help, please contact us.  The parents in our group are more than happy to help!

If you are a minor and you are reading this, please take this advice into consideration and understand that while it may seem as if we are excluding your age group, we are in fact trying to ensure your protection and proper development until you are legally old enough to proceed.  Having an unsupportive family is heartbreaking, believe me when I say my packmates know that. 

However, packs that include adults can actually be sued for accepting minor members without parental permission and that is a reality, even if that pack has no intentions of harming you.  It is every responsible parent’s right to be protective over their children because you are their world.  A wolf in the wild would do the same for their pups.  Likewise, we want our community to remain an entity that is respectable and responsible so we may continue this way of life in peace without being demonized and feared. 

The safety of our community and the people within it will always be our top priority.  The growth of our community is important as well, but we are willing to wait for your generation to ensure we are doing what is best for all parties.  Don’t worry; our community isn’t going anywhere and we’ll be here when you’re ready.  In fact, with each passing year, there are more teaching resources and new packs that are added to our community, so by the time you are old enough to participate there will be even more for you to explore and learn about. 

Until then, be patient and absorb all of the information and life skills that you can because well-educated and responsible packmates are hard to find!  

The role of a wolf pup is important too.  You may see it as not being able to participate, but please recognize what a great opportunity you have to get the best start in your life.  There is a job for you already. 

Stay in your den and learn from your parents until you are responsible and old enough to venture out on your own. 

Gather wisdom and experience in a safe manner, especially by completing school and becoming self-sufficient.  Being able to hold a job and drive a car can help you participate in pack activities when you’re older such as camping trips, seminars, conventions, and vendor fairs.  Predators are everywhere these days, and you aren’t of use to your family or your future packs if you put yourself in dangerous situations. 

If you make dangerous or inappropriate decisions in the name of our path or our communities, it can not only harm you and your families, but it can also harm the reputation of our communities and packs and what we are trying to build; a respected way of life that is not mocked or demonized. 

Perhaps consider joining martial arts classes so you can protect yourself and others from assault and give yourself a sense of self-discipline and responsibility.  Gymnastics and parkour help as well. 

-Take yoga to help you meditate and quiet your mind.  Make healthy choices while you’re young, to make you a stronger wolf in the future. 

-Stay active and eat right, read as much as you can. 

-Grow your bodies and minds. 

-Regulate your emotions and gain self-control. 

-Give yourself the best head start, because believe me we’d be stronger as a community if we all had those opportunities. 

We wish you the best, and for those of you who take our advice to heart, maybe we’ll be able to work together in our community in the future.

Ultimately, we want the future wolf-spirited members of our community, and all Therians/Otherkin/etc., to have a better start to this lifestyle than our generation did. 

We are still recovering from not being accepted by our parents (which can lead to self-harm and falling in with dangerous individuals), being mocked, self-enforced isolation, trauma, abuse, and neglect of our mental and emotional well-being, and hopping from one pack to the next trying to find mature individuals who can be positive examples in this lifestyle and spiritual community. 

There are still groups within our community who do not properly represent us, and in fact, commit misconduct.  We are doing our best to be a better example and to weed them out, but it takes time.  Please help us by doing your part as parents to protect our future generations, and for the future wolves out there please be patient and stay strong. 

Bright blessings to you and your families

~Serenity O’ Faoladh