Normally when a teen goes missing, it seems to be a girl from a troubled situation at home. This case is different.

This kid is from an affluent and seemingly happy home in a nice town. He's a good-looking, bright kid, who had a argument with his dad about his school work. He was spotted Saturday at a train station in Camden. The opposite direction from where people thought he was.

Thomas Kolding is from Mountain Lakes and is in advanced classes and never causes any kind of trouble at home or school, according to his dad. Of course, his parents are worried sick and have gone out of their way to try to find him, with help. A vigil was held for him at his school Wednesday night.

Maybe there was too much pressure for the kid to perform. I don't blame the parents here. We all want our kids to be the best that they can be. Apparently the kid is very bright and articulate and has enormous potential. Sometimes the best thing for our kids is to just be kids.

Today there is so much emphasis put on achievement and success even at an early age. Life is all about balance. Yes, we want to give our kids every advantage and yes, we want to push them to reach their potential. But sometimes modern life and it's pressures can be too much, even for mature adults.

Imagine that stress on a 15-year-old. Again, I'm not putting any blame on these poor parents. I agonize even thinking about what they must be going through. Thomas left a note saying he didn't want to be found. I also agonize over what this poor kid is going through in his mind.

Thomas, there will be plenty of time to explore the world and be out there on your own. Right now is not the time. Your family and friends are grief stricken with worry about you. Please come home. Come home now before something bad should happen. You'll have a great story to tell and plenty of time to plan your solo adventures for when you're old enough to do it the right way.

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