The phone began to vibrate. It was a text from Denise. The pain in this family came through clearly in the video. It was a classic meltdown... or, maybe "explosion" is a better word. Yelling, screaming, jumping, hitting and, "I hate you mom. Get away from me." A picture is worth a thousand words and now the challenges in this home were clear. As Xander got older, the outbursts, the violence and the cruel words were getting stronger and more hurtful.
Denise and Joe decided to make "The Shift." This means they shifted away from trying to control Xander and concentrated more on partnership and relationship. The journey through adolescence can be likened to hiking and conquering these mountains. It's a hard journey and not one to be taken alone without a guide. We needed to help Xander understand the challenges of this climb while convincing him that we were on his side. We started our journey on the First Pathway by having Xander take the Clifton Strengths Explorer Youth Assessment. Xander’s brain is wired to think about future adventures or projects. He dreams about building a tree fort or lego spaceship; going on an adventure with his friends; or becoming a civil engineer. When it’s time to do a chore or some tedious schoolwork, he gets frustrated because it takes him away from these things. We call this strength, “Future Thinker.”
I received this text recently from Joe.
It’s going very well with Xander. He’s been unbelievable the last couple of days. Whatever I ask him to do, he will do it right away with a “Yes sir!” And if he forgets or gets distracted, he says “Oops, I’m so sorry. I’ll do it right now.”
Xander feels understood and appreciated. Denise and Joe are now fully committed to empowering and equipping Xander to fully embrace his strengths and become the best version of himself.