Becoming Independent

“Highfields has changed my life” – Marcus

   Marcus came to Highfields’ residential treatment program in 2016.  He needed to work on his anger, learn how to get along with his mom, and make a plan for his future that didn’t involve running away.

   With help from his Family Counselor, Chris Jurasek, Marcus is building a new relationship with his mom.  “We can’t always meet face to face so we have family therapy sessions on the phone,” said Chris. “We confront past problems, strategize new ways to handle them and then Marcus spends a weekend at home with his mom and they try out the new techniques.”

   “I want to have a better relationship with my mom, and we’re trying to figure out the best way to do that, and maintain it,” Marcus said.

   Marcus attends treatment groups at Highfields to control his anger. He is learning what triggers his anger, why he gets so angry, and how to stop before he blows up.

    “I’ve done stuff in the past that I’m not proud of,” said Marcus. “It made me think that something worse could have happened. Seeing that and going through that makes me want to change things.”

   Today, Marcus has a plan.  While still at Highfields, he attends online classes at Grand Rapids Community College with help from a laptop given to him by a generous donor.  Marcus aspires to finish college, become a social worker and finally be out on his own. He plans to help other kids who have gone through similar situations.

   "I was independent growing up, so when I started getting older and people wanted to help me, I didn’t want to let them in because I thought I could do it on my own,” said Marcus. “I want to help other kids like me so they don’t make the same mistakes.”

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