Jasmine* is a 47 year-old mother of four with an extensive history of emotional, physical and sexual abuse, dating back to early childhood, as well as having experienced violence in the community where she lived and struggling with severe mental illness.
When Jasmine first came to House of Ruth’s Domestic Violence Support Center (DVSC), she was struggling to fulfill all of her commitments to the Child and Family Services Agency in order to reunify with her son, and was having great difficulty tending to her daughter, who was frequently hospitalized for her mental health needs.
During her sessions at the DVSC, Jasmine reported that her son’s father was frequently abusive and violent towards her and all her children. Jasmine sought counseling to assist her in understanding the circumstances which resulted in her son’s removal, to develop better coping skills for the emotional distress she experienced due to her trauma history, to acquire more effective and healthier parenting strategies, and to maintain and prioritize the safety of her children and herself.
Working consistently in therapy toward these goals, Jasmine has accomplished a tremendous amount. She has worked hard to enforce boundaries with her son’s father, including obtaining a Civil Protection Order, reporting violations, and renewing the order when necessary. While Jasmine struggled with this in the beginning, she has now changed her phone number and moved her residence entirely to enforce the separation between them.
As of last fall, Jasmine’s son, after four years in foster care, has reunified with his mother and siblings at home. Jasmine’s oldest daughter has stabilized and attends a day school for young adults with special needs. Jasmine herself reports that, with supportive services, she has been able to make better parenting decisions regarding her children. Jasmine says she and her family finally feel safe.
*Names have been changed.