Opinion & Essays
- Apr, 1997 Issue #45
THE REAL WORLD
by: Kathy Dodds
“I Succeed At Home First”
Morgan Hill, California
408-779-8139 or 310-942-5627
The most frightening thing to both the parents and the child is transitioning
back into the family from a highly structured environment. Depending on the experience the child has had and the length of time they
have been away, and of course the disposition of the child, the difficulty is in degrees. At best it is awkward and uncomfortable,
no one really knows what to expect. Fears run deep, based on experiences of the past and the fear of regression to where things were
before the drastic decision to send a child away was ever made.
As a parent of a child that was in a structured facility for 10 ½ months,
I know first hand the fear associated with the return of my child. While the decision to send my daughter away was probably the most
difficult decision I have ever made, once she was gone, there was peace and order where there had been turmoil and chaos. While there
were intense emotions I had to deal with, at least I could sleep at night knowing she was safe. Every moment of every day was no longer
spent trying to keep up with her, frantically trying to find her when she wasn’t where she was supposed to be.
How do you have the smoothest transition possible? The best way I know is
by the parents, the child and siblings attending trainings, both independently and together, that teach communication skills, decision
making skills, and integration. It is done in a forum that diminishes anger, and builds trust and confidence.
Since I’ve been involved with these trainings, we have had a successful transition
with my daughter returning to public high school and becoming an “A” student. At the end of her sophomore year she had a 4.0 average.
Besides our family’s successes, I have also witnessed miracles. I have seen the deepest wounds healed. I have seen the rebirth of
families. I have seen love and commitment. I have seen lasting results.
We are now offering consulting and trainings (“I Succeed At Home First”)
to schools and facilities tailored to their particular needs. In addition, we offer similar trainings to the general public for families
that are not to the point of crisis that they felt they must remove their children from their home. I have seen the same miracles
occur over and over in every training. If you are a director of a school or facility, a counselor, or a parent and you would like
more information about “I Succeed at Home First”, please contact us.
Copyright © 1997, Woodbury Reports, Inc. (This article may be reproduced
without prior approval if the copyright notice and proper publication and author attribution accompanies the copy.)