Originally from Burma and part of the Karen population, Grace and July fled their home country and came to the United States as refugees, to seek a better life for their family.
They felt safe here in Omaha, NE and everything seemed to be going well until recently. Their teenage daughter Luna* started getting involved with drug use, running away from home, and having a relationship with an older man, which concerned her parents.
The issue at the heart of their challenges was that Luna had become more integrated into American culture, while her parents were more comfortable maintaining their culture or origin and speaking their native language. This caused some strain in their relationship, as it felt as though the two cultures were sometimes at odds, and communication had become more difficult.
Grace and July continued to be concerned with Luna’s ongoing bad behavior, so they sought the assistance of Heartland Family Service’s Restoring HOPE (R-HOPE) servies. They were grateful to receive support from a Heartland Family Service R-HOPE family support cultural ambassador.
After some consultations and counseling with the family, Luna began to act more maturely and take responsibility for her decisions and actions and began to steadily improve. Finally, Luna decided to end the relationship with the older man she had been seeing and began to check in with her parents whenever she was going to leave the house. This was a great improvement for healthy family interaction.
As a result of the counseling and assistance from the R-HOPE family support cultural ambassador, Grace and July improved their relationship with Luna and created more open channels of communication among the family. They put their focus on preserving the family unit with identifying strengths and weaknesses to set goals, and to learn new methods and techniques for parenting, which helped Luna overcome her social struggles.
With support from Heartland Family Service’s R-HOPE services, Grace and July were able to bring their family closer together, So Luna Can.
* To protect our client’s rights, the client has been de-identified in this story. The photo is not a picture of our client.