It’s a sad state of affairs when children have to be taken from their parents and placed outside their homes. The staff at Family Resources does their best to strengthen families, so that children can live with their parents in a warm, loving atmosphere.
In one of our more remarkable success stories, Kacey*, a young mother whose husband was incarcerated on a domestic violence charge, had been separated from her three young children for fourteen months. With only two months to go before the legal system could authorize a permanent separation, Kacey regained custody of her children, just in time for the holiday season. In early December, Family Resources was asked to provide help to Kacey through its Family Unification Services (FUS). Although Kacey was living in a women’s shelter due to her husband’s domestic violence history, she worked with the FUS team to find her way out of the shelter and into a new home.
As a participant in the FUS program, Kacey was taught parenting skills to keep her children safe. Participants usually require at least 90 days to master the skills needed to keep their children safe, but Kacey completed the program in 60 days. In addition, through Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) provided at Family Resources, she learned how to set boundaries and expectations with her children in their new home.
During a visit from her Family Resources home-based therapist, Kacey recalled some of the strategies she learned during the PCIT sessions. She shared with her therapist how she effectively utilized her newfound parenting skills while living independently.
Adoption is a heartwarming experience, but can often come with its own set of parenting issues. In one such case, where intervention by Family Resources was needed, teenage Deena* assaulted her adoptive mother Claire.* After the assault, Deena’s first instinct was to leave home and live with her boyfriend. Unsure how to handle the situation, Deena’s frustrated mother allowed Deena to move in with her boyfriend for a short period of time.
A therapeutic team from Family Resources intervened and set up a meeting with Deena and Claire. A list of expectations was created for Deena and, at the same time, the Family Resources therapeutic team explained to Claire that her daughter’s aggressive behavior could stem from having been placed in several different temporary homes since early childhood.
With this newfound approach to understanding her daughter’s specific needs (What happened to Deena rather than What’s wrong with Deena), Deena and Claire worked with the Family Resources team to create an understanding of the commitment associated within the boundaries of a family.
After 90 days of treatment in Family Resources Parent-Teen Conflict program, Deena completed several of the goals set for her, including finding a job and opening a bank account. Doing the laundry can still be a source of dispute between mother and daughter, but both parties are working together to create harmony - and clean clothes!