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Coping with a Father’s Deployment

/Coping with a Father’s Deployment

NYFS recently helped a 10-year-old boy who was having problems in school.

According to school staff, the boy had problems paying attention, staying on task and was easily distracted to the point that he was affecting his success in the classroom.

While this can be a common problem for young children, this boy had more to deal with than the average child; his father had been deployed to Iraq and he was forced to change schools and leave his home to live with his aunt while his father was gone.

NYFS Counseling Center staff worked with the boy and helped him express his feelings about his father’s absence. His classroom behavior steadily improved. With help, the boy also learned to manage his impulsive behavior in the classroom and maintain his focus and attention without difficulty. His home life improved too and the child was better able to show appropriate and respectful behavior toward his aunt during these difficult times. His counselor showed him how to seek and receive help from others when he was having a hard time dealing with his father’s absence.

During the course of therapy, the boy was also able to use his newfound problem-solving skills to address potential difficulties with adjusting back to his previous living situation when his father returned from Iraq. Throughout the entire process, he was able to maintain above average academic scores throughout the school year.

This child’s story represents just one of thousands of lives touched by the dedicated staff of Northeast Youth & Family Services. Each year, the Counseling center serves over 1,500 youth and their families through one to one and group counseling. For more information about NYFS mental health programs and services, please call 651-486-3808.