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Tasha learning skills to cope with difficult situations and events

December 3, 2015


Tasha, 14, shared with her counselor that her pets were her only friends. When she felt threatened or angry, she would begin to behave like a cat.

“Tasha was allegedly touched inappropriately by a boy at school, and this is when the behaviors began,” said Karissa Winfrey, courtyard supervisor at Youth Villages’ Girls Center for Intensive Residential Treatment. “Tasha feels like an outsider.”

Tasha’s been at Youth Villages’ Girls Center for nearly a year. In that time, counselors and staff have helped Tasha, giving her skills to cope with situations and events that would formerly trigger her negative behaviors.

“We let her have that pretend-time because that was important for her,” said Katelynne McClung, Youth Villages’ residential therapist. “But she also began to see there was a time for that and a time to be in the present with everyone else.”

Tasha learned how to communicate her feelings and manage her emotions, especially the negative ones.

“Children who go through trauma at a young age have an extremely difficult time regulating their emotions,” Katelynne said. “Tasha’s worked hard here, and we remind her about all of the things she’s learned so she can care for herself.”

She’s a totally different child now. Tasha will soon discharge and return to her parents, who adopted her at a young age.

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