Daniella is a 10-year-old Hispanic female who was referred to the Community Family Guidance Center by her social worker because Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) had recently placed her in a foster home after she was left at home alone overnight with her two younger brothers. Her mother tested positive for drugs and agreed to go to a drug rehabilitation facility.
Daniella began seeing one of our therapists because she was misbehaving in class, disobeying the rules, starting to fail her classes, and fighting with another girl at school. In therapy, Daniella and her therapist used art and play activities to help Daniella express her anger and sadness. Because of the trusting relationship she built with her therapist, Daniella communicated about how she missed her mother and brothers, who had been placed in another home.
The Community Family Guidance Center’s therapist worked with Daniella’s foster family and her mother to address Daniella’s behaviors. Through this process, Daniella’s grades began to improve, she could focus in school, and she formed better relationships with her peers. At the same time, Daniella’s mother sought help for her substance abuse problem. After ten months DCFS made plans to return Daniella and her brothers to their mother. Daniella continued a few more months with individual and family therapy at Community Family Guidance Center. Through family therapy, Daniella and her mother were able to build a new, healthy, mother-child relationship, and Daniella’s mother was able to learn new ways of parenting her three children. Daniella and her brothers have been living back with their mother for 6 months, and DCFS is no longer concerned about the safety in the home.