Before Bruce started therapy at Child Focus, he felt like dying was better than living. A teenager, Bruce was referred by his parent following a hospitalization for a suicide attempt. While in the hospital, he was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. At intake, Bruce shared that he was bullied at school and was currently on homebound schooling due to this bullying and lack of friendships. He also opened up about having poor self-esteem, questioning his sexual orientation, his history of depression and suicidal thoughts, as well as conflicts with several family members.
Bruce received Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy to build skills to manage his depression and suicidal thoughts, including developing a safety plan that was reviewed weekly with Bruce and his parent. Family therapy was also provided to educate Bruce’s parent about the LGBTQ population and resources, increase conflict management skills and improve communication skills. The therapist assisted Bruce in learning the following skills: assertiveness, how to identify and challenge cognitive distortions, and how to make healthy friendships.
Now Bruce is thriving. Within months of starting treatment, he has successfully returned to his high school and graduated at age 16. He is now enrolled in college and has a job where he has been employed for over a year. Other successes include him getting his driver's license, making several friends and engaging in social activities weekly. Bruce has also been medication free for over a year. He has not experienced any suicidal thoughts in over 12 months and this month he discharged successfully from services. Bruce is just one example of the lives that are being changed every day here at Child Focus.