Ethan's Story

Ethan is an 8th grader. He first arrived at Lena Pope two years ago for assistance with anxiety. His single mom, who works part-time for a private school, has had cancer twice. Her treatment affects mobility, and although she has experienced significant physical limitations as a result, she isn't qualified to receive disability benefits.

Ethan's mom is hard-working and optimistic. She sought support from Lena Pope because she was at a loss for how to help her son with his social anxiety and difficulty communicating.

Lena Pope's therapy staff identified that Ethan exhibits several symptoms of Autism and encouraged further testing at school. With a confirmed diagnosis, Ethan began receiving accommodations that helped him go from failing to passing all of his classes. His therapists at Lena Pope have used cards with emotion words on them, chore charts, and other visuals to help Ethan become more comfortable communicating. His mom reports that he is more able to "use his words" than in the past.

Recently Ethan's mom had a major surgery which requires him to handle most of the physical tasks around the house. They also found out she may have cancer for a third time. Though Ethan is worried and feels anxious sometimes, he has been able to pass all his classes. His teachers say he is more social at school and has not had problems with being bullied this year. Despite all the stress factors in Ethan's life, he has blossomed into a healthy, happy, silly teenager.