Dear Doctor of Shattered Hope,
I am writing this letter to try to explain the desperation we have felt as your team of experts have denied access to your program for our son.
I know that you have only known us for 36 minutes; yes, I timed our session spent with you as I was fully aware of the importance of the intake meeting. We were given 36 minutes to review a lifetime of struggle and the summit experience of having our son begin his long-awaited u-turn in life. 36 minutes to share with you the bumps in the road, the twists and turns, and the fight that has required more of us than we ever imagined.
As I sat in that meeting last week, it was hard to contain my enthusiasm. My complete joy that our son had recently committed to do the hard work that will be required of him to continue this turn around in his life was difficult to restrain; still, I sat quietly watching my son advocate for himself by answering each and every question asked reviewing years of disappointment and personal pain. For years, as his parents, we have navigated through unexpected territory, some times leading, most times picking ourselves up out of the unimaginable wreckage that our son's decisions have brought upon this family. It has long been our hope that if we could only lead him to the right mental health program, he would receive the tools and education that would equip him to better live his life. In fact, at every turn, it seemed there was a blinking neon road sign directing us to this kind of help.
Imagine my despair when your team decided that our son, in spite of successfully completing a 30 day residential treatment program, does not meet the criteria necessary for your extended after care program. We have held out all hope for the day that he would mature enough to make this decision to get help. And now, the help we have long hoped for, dreamed of, and prayed for....is being withheld for reasons that are not understandable to us.
I am not a professional, I am a Mom. I am left with the ramifications of this decision--and yet, I do understand it is our son who must face the consequences of this decision. Somehow, I always imagined that if he would only come to this u-turn, the road would be smoother. That he has met with this road-block so soon has shattered my belief in a mental health system that I have long advocated. In fact, upon my return to college as a non-traditional student, I chose this field as my major and hoped to one day make a difference in the lives of those who are hurting as a professional.
Perhaps I have more to learn before I will ever be able to understand the closing of this door. And yet, on a personal level, I do understand that I must step aside from this road block and once again continue to help my son navigate through yet another detour. Still, I have lived long enough to understand that life is filled with road blocks. While they may temporarily stall our journey, they need not end it. Our job is not to complain or cajole, it is to continue to plot a course that will complete our son's journey of hope.
We have tried to teach our son the importance of physical, mental and emotional care; perhaps this road block will allow us to teach him an important spiritual lesson--surrendering to a hope that never fails. It is quite possible that you have provided us an opportunity that would have never otherwise been afforded. So, for this alone, I say thank you.