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After Christopher experiences the support of a forever family, his behavior changes

April 20, 2015
Christopher and Jacki McCartt

Christopher and Jacki McCartt

Christopher, 11, struggled with his behavior upon entering Tim and Brandy’s foster home. He previously had several placement disruptions, had been separated from his siblings due to behavior and had low performance in school.

“Waiting for a new permanent family was really hard on Christopher,” said LaShea Cooks, Youth Villages foster care clinical supervisor. “I think a lot of his behavioral issues stemmed from that uncertainty.”

Christopher and his sisters entered custody three years ago due to neglect from their biological parents. They also experienced sexual and physical abuse. With his traumatic history, Christopher had trouble trusting that Tim and Brandy were going to stick around.

“Christopher had been getting into some fights at school and his grades were dropping,” said Katelyn Goodall, Youth Villages foster care counselor. “With his parental involvement, we have not seen these two issues in a while.”

Once Tim and Brandy’s commitment to Christopher was apparent to him, his behavior began to change. Christopher warmed up to the idea of adoption.

“Tim fully stepped into the father role for Christopher,” LaShea said. “With Tim’s patience, Christopher’s behaviors have been much better.”

One week after they signed an intent to adopt, Christopher’s adoption was finalized. An adoption celebration was held at Christopher’s favorite restaurant with his new family, biological sisters and Youth Villages team.

Through meetings with teachers and faculty, Tim and Brandy have worked hard to get Christopher back on track at school. Since he has had the support of his adoptive parents, along with cognitive behavioral therapy through Youth Villages, Christopher has been happier and more successful.

“His adoptive family really pushes Christopher to succeed in school,” Katelyn said, “which is the area where Christopher struggled the most and is now flourishing.”

Christopher also participates in the Boys and Girls Club, learning the extra social skills he lacks.

“Tim and Brandy are teaching him many important lessons,” LaShea said. “Most importantly, they have given him an overall sense of calmness.”

Tim’s patience has gained Christopher’s trust and he has easily become comfortable with the compassionate, reserved and understanding personality of Brandy. Thanks to these devoted parents, along with his Youth Villages team, Christopher finally feels a sense of security.

“As Christopher patiently waited for the judge to arrive on the day of his adoption,” said Joli LaRoche, Youth Villages adoption specialist, “he announced to everyone in the office how glad he was to finally become a member of a forever family.”

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