When the SCWQ staff first encountered this child*, it became clear very quickly that this was a long way from being a standard case. While Student Care assists many troubled children, few have seen violence to the extent of that endured by this child from the day she was born.
Her biological father, as well as her stepfather to follow, were both found to be chronic alcoholics, and pathologically violent. After multiple hospitalisations even before her 5th birthday, She was taught to go to her room and lock the door whenever her stepfather became violent.
The child’s biological father wanted custody of his daughter and granted visitation. She was repeatedly beaten, punched and kicked when she stayed with him, and locked in her room for the whole day. Due to the fact that this child would not speak openly with anyone little could be done, the abuse continued.
At a young age , this child has been diagnosed with ADHD, ODD and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. She has been tested for autism but has only 19 of the required 21 markers. 3 months into her counselling, she began to show real signs of improvement. Reports from her counsellor con rm that her social skills are developing. She tells her counsellor that she has been much better behaved, and her mother confirms this. She says that there has been one ‘blow up’ in ten days as opposed to ten ‘blow ups’ in one day.
Mum is looking less stressed, and the child has been enthusiastically using her ‘whack it’ doll, a gift from her counsellor intended to help her release her anger in a safe and healthy way.
Her improvement is a promising sign. She adores Joe Bear, and our counsellor, putting us in the prime position to guide her through a positive transition and see her onto the road leading towards a healthy and empowered future.
Since this case example was originally published, the child has moved out of our geographical area of operation. At the time of her departure however, she had received over 6 months of weekly counselling and all signs suggested that she had come an immensely long way, was happier and more well adjusted.
She is well aware that she can call us for phone counselling at any time, and while her journey of recovery is far from over, we believe the support we have given her will be instrumental in helping her find happiness and achieve her dreams.