When James first began outpatient services with Pinebrook, he was a quiet, anxious, and passive eleven-year-old boy. At the time, he was living with his mother and younger brother at his grandmother’s home. James had witnessed street violence and was struggling to cope with the trauma suffered as a result of his father’s involvement and subsequent incarceration. He lacked the ability to share his thoughts and feelings in a healthy way and was struggling to protect his family during his father’s absence. Due to the lack of clarity in each family member’s role, conflicts often arose. James would become very angry, which he demonstrated either in defiance and aggression or becoming sad and withdrawn.
Through the course of individual and family counseling, James and his family improved their ability to communicate with one another, manage their emotions during conflicts, and establish healthy roles for each member of the family. As a result, James has become less anxious and is now more assertive. His relationship with his father has also greatly improved through increased correspondence and visits.
Today, James, his mother and brother are living in their own apartment. While there are financial struggles, they are able to share their feelings with one another in ways that rarely lead to conflict and have developed relationships based on respect. James now participates in a supervised community boxing program, which is supported by strong male role models. He continues to perform well academically. Through the course of treatment, James’ mother also recognized her own anxiety and anger issues, and has worked diligently to overcome them through Pinebrook’s outpatient adult services.