Muppets offer comfort


Sesame Workshop/PBS/TNS

Elmo and Karli on "Sesame Street." In May, the show's creators introduced Karli, a Muppet in foster care, and in October they revealed the reason for her situation: Her mom struggles with substance abuse.

Tessa Morhardt

Editor in Chief

Sesame Street has come out with a new character to show children that they’re not alone while their parents struggle with addiction.

The new muppet Karli, who is 6 years old, talks to other Muppet friends about what is going on in her life, and how her mother is struggling with addiction. She tells them that she may have to stay with a foster family because her mother is not able to handle some of her problems.

These videos show children that they don’t have to feel alone in these situations and that there are other children out there they can connect with. Karli tells kids that she goes to special meetings to meet with these other children so they are able to share what their experiences are.

“For children who connect to Karli, hearing ‘It’s not your fault—you are not alone, and there are safe people and places that can help,’ opens a path to hope and healing,” said Jerry Moe, national director of the Hazelden Betty Ford Children’s Program, one of many advisers for the movement.

In one of the videos, Karli ends up meeting 10-year-old Salia who shares her story about what it’s like for her and her sisters while her parents both deal with addiction. Salia states that “I’m proud of Mom and Dad for asking for help, and not using drugs and alcohol anymore. And they’re proud of me, for just being me.”

Sesame Street is providing access to tools, activities, and help so that children are able to manage their feelings while their parents are managing their addictions.

Sesame Street is giving hope to children all over the world, and changing the way they see themselves and their parents. Having a character like Karli gives them support and provides comfort when their parents aren’t able to.

There are too many children in today’s society who live with parents who are suffering from addiction, and they don’t know how to cope. With these videos, Sesame Street has really gone above and beyond for these children. Showing them that someone cares and telling them that it isn’t their fault is a great action to be taken for them.