Richard's Journey

November 08, 2022

Richard's Journey

Richard, 22, a college student at a local university, started therapy to help manage his anxiety, depression and binge eating. He had struggled with all three, on and off, since middle school when he had a brief period of counseling, but has since been managing it with medications. The medication helped, but it was clear he needed more assistance. Richard contacted JF&CS through the Be Well With Hillel program, which through funding from Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta, provides counseling for Jewish college students in Georgia. He was connected with a therapist.

As Richard's therapist delved into his relationship and family history, he expressed a great deal of anger and resentment toward his parents due to the emotional abuse and neglect he experienced as a child, and continues to experience as an adult. At the core, he felt unseen and unheard by his family.

As a result, he was fearful of abandonment in relationships and had a difficult time trusting friends and partners. Richard and his JF&CS therapist worked together on these challenges.

During their sessions together, they processed his concerns and fears, and worked on emotion regulation and communication skills in preparation for an upcoming visit from his father.

At the next session, Richard was excited to share that he not only had a productive conversation with his father, but that his Dad apologized to him. In his words, “I can’t ever remember hearing my Dad say, 'I’m sorry.' He genuinely seemed to hear me.”

Since then, Richard has a better relationship with his father and has noticed a significant improvement in his daily life, along with gradual progress in controlling his urge to binge eat. He has started dating again and his grades have improved. Standing up to his father in a constructive way, and learning how to manage his emotions, have made a big difference in his life.

The programs of JF&CS empower clients who help strengthen our community. Richard was empowered through Be Well with Hillel and now feels more confident and comfortable on his campus. When you support the JF&CS Annual Campaign, you help people like Richard get the help they need.

Empower lives. Strengthen communities.

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