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Boys Town Lifeline Helps Keep Mom, Daughter Together

For 15-year-old Latoya, every day seemed to be shrouded in a dark cloud.

The teen didn’t want to go to school and felt like she really wasn’t going anywhere in life. To cope with her feelings, she started using drugs and skipping school. More and more, she had a difficult time even thinking about life. Suicidal thoughts crossed her mind.

Julia, Latoya’s mom, saw that her daughter was slowly slipping away. Thankfully, Julia knew a co-worker who told her about the helpful services that were available through Boys Town New York.

Once Julia and Latoya entered the site’s In-Home Family Services ® program and began working with a Boys Town Family Consultant in their home, things began to turn around.

A big plus was that Latoya wanted to get better. During the intervention, the Family Consultant encouraged Latoya to express her feelings, and introduced problem-solving methods that could help the teen make better decisions and enhance her positive thinking skills. Latoya’s suicidal thoughts stopped, and she was able to stay at home with her mom instead of being hospitalized to ensure her safety.

Latoya also started to show progress in school. Her grades improved and she went from skipping school three times or more a week to not missing classes at all. Best of all, Latoya was able to quit using the drugs she had come to depend on just to get through a bad day.

Boys Town also introduced Julia to its Common Sense Parenting ® program, which helped enhance her parenting skills and taught new strategies for supporting Latoya’s progress.

Julia credits the persistence of the Boys Town staff, especially the Family Consultant, with helping to get her daughter back on track and back into life, and with keeping them together.

“I don’t know where we would be without Boys Town,” Julia said. “We all worked together to help Latoya. And I mean that in every sense. If I couldn’t be at school, then her Family Consultant was. We were all relentless in our support.”

The steady progress Latoya made during the intervention continued to pay dividends even after she and her mother successfully completed the Boys Town program. Latoya went on to earn two ranking merits in Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (JROTC) and was tentatively awarded a full scholarship to the Air Force Academy upon her high school graduation.

Communication between Latoya and her mom also greatly improved. Now, the mother and daughter who were drifting apart and facing separation are closer than ever.

“I really did think I was going to have to send her away,” Julia said. “I was running out of options. I just couldn’t handle things at home. But thanks to Boys Town, we were able to get things under control. She is doing really good now. I am elated with how Boys Town helped.”

The stories provided about the children and families in our care are real. In some cases, names may be changed and details altered to protect their privacy and therapeutic interests.