He didn’t realize he wasn’t equipped to be on his own

Brendan was in and out of foster care settings for as long as he could remember. When he turned 18, he was so happy to be “free” from the cycle of placements and the traumas that often accompanied them. At the time, he didn’t fully realize that he wasn’t equipped to be on his own. After couch surfing and working part-time jobs for several months, Brendan had run out of options and landed in the city shelter for single adults. The shelter did not turn anyone away, even if they were intoxicated, so this 18-year-old “adult” holed up in a corner with his arms around his knees, unable to relax and close his eyes because all of his worldly possessions were in the backpack he was wearing. The chaos around him was almost unbearable. 

The shelter staff referred him to a youth shelter, and he was able to get a bed there soon after. He benefited from the youth programming, getting a bank account, and full-time work. He finally felt security and stability, but he knew his days were numbered until he was no longer a “youth.” 

Where would Brendan go next?

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Seth Stevenson

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