Rich asks the teens' family members to stand if they are worried about their child's health, life or future. They have good reason to be worried. Stephanie L. says she has had type 2 diabetes for two years.
But the response to the next question is truly chilling. "Teens, please stand if you've ever seriously considered or attempted suicide," Yvonne asks. Many do.
Tyler says he is one of those who have. "I keep thinking, 'If I'm gone, how would they feel—better or not?'" he says.
Yvonne says she is not at all surprised by the reaction to that question. "I expected it. I was overweight as a teenager too," she says. "Being teased all the time and I was suicidal and felt depressed all the time, so that wasn't a surprise."
The goal of this exercise, Yvonne says, is to show the teens that they are not alone and put them in touch with their emotions. "It's an opportunity to be able to wake up," she says. "One of the biggest goals is to give them tools to help them get the feelings out instead of trying to numb them out through food."