In order to say how much TCS has done for me, as well as what it means for me, I need to give a bit of back-story.
I was in public school starting in Kindergarten, and stayed in that system through the end of 7th grade. Most of my time in elementary school was fine – the teachers were nice, the learning was fun, and of course there was nap-time and recess. It wasn’t always perfect, however. The other kids in my grade, and some older ones, would pick on me because I was different. If I got hurt – even slightly – I would cry, so naturally these mean kids would call me “Crybaby”. I’ve also worn glasses as long as I can remember, so I was also called “Four-Eyes”. Thankfully, those memories have all but faded.
Then I started attending middle school, where I lived the worst two years of my life.
Gone were the days of elementary school teasing – at this point it was full-fledged bullying. Other kids would push me down while I was heading to the next class; they would push my head into a locker and slam the door on my neck; one kid even put me in a choke-hold, and I was unable to breathe until the janitor broke us up. During this time I started to have suicidal thoughts. These kids, however, were not the biggest problem – the biggest problem was the administration.
The teachers and administrators never took my side; whenever my mother would confront them about why they didn’t stop what the bullies were doing, the “suits” would tell her, “Well, if he didn’t react the way he does, the bullies would leave him alone.” My mother would then tell them, “Maybe you should make the bullies’ parents talk to their kids about leaving my son alone!” The leaders’ response? “Oh, we don’t have the authority to do that.” BULL****! (Pardon my French, but I think that how I feel is relevant to this). Needless to say, I was pulled out of public school early, never getting to experience a true high school.
This is when I got introduced to TCS, and my life did a complete one-eighty. For the first time in my life, I made friends – friends that I still see fairly regularly. Teachers actually helped me instead of ignored me. I actually felt, for the first time… like I was worth something. Gone are the suicidal thoughts; now I’m talking to people outside of the program, I’m rarely depressed for days on end, and I just finished my first year of college with a 3.5 GPA! Needless to say, TCS has changed my life, and I am forever in their debt.
~Kenny B., Young Adult Transition Program