The youth-written stories in YCteen give inspiration and information to teens in foster care while offering staff insight into those teens’ struggles.

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Issue #129 (Summer 2017) issue cover
Moving On

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Staff member Ann Rickitts helps Christian turn his life around by teaching him to set goals and showing him his own strength. (full text)

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The writers in this issue illustrate how trauma shapes behavior and give foster care staff insight on how to respond. The stories show how to help kids heal through consistency, coping skills, therapy, and writing. (full text)

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V.M.'s father abandons the family and then berates V.M. for crying when his mother dies. V.M. learns how to be a better man by tuning into good role models and his own compassion. (full text)

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The author, frustrated by abuse and unfairness, fights. After hitting a pregnant girl, she realizes she must stop and does, with the help of yoga, running, and therapy. (full text)

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The writer is treated badly and inconsistently by her mother and grandmother. She cuts herself to relieve her pain, but moves toward stopping with the help of music, reading, and writing. (full text)

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At age 15, Alesha is seduced and then abused by a predator in his 30s. She details how he manipulated her, then how she got free and repaired her damaged self-worth. (full text)

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A therapist explains how abuse and neglect can lead to isolating behaviors like fighting, cutting, substance abuse as well as more abusive relationships. She also gives practical tips for quitting self-destructive habits. (full text)

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The writer is prostituted by her parents, runs away, and then goes into care. Her father begs for forgiveness, and she decides that forgiving him will bring her some peace. (full text)

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Alesha participates in Shadow Day, where New York foster youth get to spend a day with the New York City Council. The youth advocate for changes they'd like to see in the city's foster care system. (full text)

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S.G.'s birth parents lost custody of her and her brother because they sold drugs in a gang. S.G. kept up with her brother after they went to separate homes and is heartbroken when he too joins the gang. (full text)

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The writer's childhood was a blur of drug dealing, abuse, death, and chaos. He mourns never getting to "do kid things" and ponders how he'll ever be able to trust. (full text)

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The author's mother subjects the author and her twin sister to extreme abuse, which is worse when she drinks. The author gets herself to college after they go into care, but her sister slides into addiction. (full text)

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Group activities explore how youth use adults as positive or negative role models and how to break self-destructive habits. (full text)
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