The children, teens and families we serve come from all different backgrounds and circumstances. It is our privilege to share stories with you that highlight the impact that exceptional care has on each child, but also what it means to the family as they witness their child find healing and hope for the future. These accomplishments are a win for everyone – the child, the family, our organization and the community at-large.
Please enjoy reading the powerful remarks below from a mother served through our Family Wellness Center.
Before receiving services at the San Diego Center for Children, our life was chaotic. There was domestic violence in the home, and both parents with drug addiction. I was verbally abusive toward my son, and in the process, I separated from him and left our apartment to go to a rehab facility for women with children where I could get better. I’ve been on and off drugs since I was 13 years old. I would go 2 to 3 years clean, sometimes just months. It’s been a long roller coaster.
I learned about the Center through my own research and word of mouth from someone at the rehab. I heard the Center could be a start to the healing process for my child and for my life. There was so much trauma in both of our lives that I was ready to give this a try. We were both broken, hurt and had much anger toward each other and others.
Jacob has always been a sweet kid, but he held anger and grudges and didn’t know how to let that go. Like mother, like son. He also struggled with ADD and anxiety. Upon starting therapy treatment, meeting Katie at the Family Wellness Center was one of the best experiences for me and Jacob. The level of understanding AND care she had is indescribable. The way she made Jacob feel so comfortable was amazing.
From the start, Jacob opened up to her about certain things little by little, but for me it was different in the beginning. At first, I didn’t even believe in myself or the change that we would both become. Negativity is all that would come out of my mouth. I must have fired Katie five times verbally and in my head, but I would always come back.
There were times that I wanted to give up, but the constant reminders about the small milestones Jacob and I were accomplishing kept me bringing us back. Six months into sessions with Jacob, and my individual sessions that Katie made for me to be able to talk about things without Jacob being present, were eye opening. Katie suggested that I start my own therapy with Kari (sessions for adults had just started in your program). Mind you, I had tried individual therapy myself before.
Kari was also great. It took me a while to learn to trust her and to be able to benefit from my sessions to the fullest. It was like I had never fully learned and accepted I was a mother to my child. I lived in my past and treated my child the way I had been treated as a child, which was not good. In my journey at the Center I learned to love Jacob for who he is, accept him and myself, and also practice patience and positive discipline. The list could go on.
Honestly, I feel that I didn’t start working through my struggles on my own until the San Diego Center for Children came into my life. I think the real work and focus became real at that point in my life. The hard work the San Diego Center for Children provides is phenomenal and a true blessing for those that are ready to receive it.
*The child’s name and image has been replaced in order to protect their identity.
Know of a family or child in need of help? Please have them contact our Family Wellness Center to learn about our range of therapeutic and educational programs. They can call (858) 634-8300 or send an email.