New Haven Alumni - 2013 Goldie
"New Haven gave me a fresh start at life and with that fresh start, I was able to accomplish more than I could have ever imagined."
Where are you now?
New Haven is nothing like I ever imagined. I am very happy today. Before New Haven I honestly could not even have imagined a life or a future for myself- it felt like there was just no hope for me. Today, I feel the exact opposite. I look back and see the past as merely steppingstones to the bright future ahead. I have so many amazing things to live for and have grown into someone who I am truly proud of. Even though the journey ahead may seem daunting at times, I can’t help but feel so grateful for every day that I am alive to create and actualize my potential. I am currently three classes away from finishing my bachelor's degree in Marketing at Rutgers University. In the last seven years since transitioning from New haven, I was fortunate enough to have numerous jobs and many different life experiences that have all shaped who I am today.
"New Haven’s approach to addressing root issues and core beliefs was another incredibly impactful part of my journey... I discovered my inherent worth and I started to believe that I was truly deserving of love."
I went from only taking one class at community college to graduating with honors and getting accepted to Rutgers- my top choice for undergraduate school. I went from my very first job working at my local mall to becoming a manager at a restaurant and then ultimately doing a 6-month marketing internship at Johnson & Johnson this past spring. There’s no doubt that I got a second chance at life because of New Haven. Yet, something I realized later was that the most powerful work I did happened only after transitioning.
One major example of this was my unique journey with religion and spirituality. I was raised Orthodox Jewish and it was a big part of my upbringing. Sadly, the years before New Haven I was struggling very much and left the Jewish community completely, vowing to never return. Fast forward to the present: I have just finished two months of spiritual learning in a women’s seminary in Israel where I fully accepted and returned to my roots in Judaism. Although I left New Haven on a very high note, I was still not ready to return to my heritage and upbringing-- I knew I needed time to truly forgive before I could take up a spiritual path. Slowly by surely, I grew closer to a higher power which brought tremendous comfort to me during my hard times.
Today, my relationship with my religion and higher power are two of the most important values in my life. Making such a big turnaround in my life did not happen overnight but was an accumulation of many small steps that I took, starting from the work I did at New Haven. Through the many challenges and the triumphs along the way, I never stopped growing—each chapter led me one step closer to finding that wellspring of meaning in my life. In short, I am very proud of the women I am today, and so is my family.
New Haven gave me a fresh start at life and with that fresh start, I was able to accomplish more than I could have ever imagined. Every opportunity I have had since New Haven has been a testament to the realization that I am an extremely capable and worthy woman with so much to offer the world and there is nothing more valuable than living with that awareness!
What part of New Haven was most helpful?
The Family Systems approach and the Core belief work were the most helpful parts of my journey. Both were unique in terms of the treatment I had already received prior to coming to New Haven, and I consider them to be a big reason why I was so successful during my time there. The family approach that New Haven uses encouraged deep work to be done within my family system, and it was in those emotional and heart-felt therapy sessions that I knew a major change was taking place. In our work together, we came across many deep-rooted patterns that required all of us to be on board for our family dynamic to truly change. Today, I can say confidently that the strong connection that my family and I now share it is due to the work we did at New Haven.
New Haven’s approach to addressing root issues and core beliefs was another incredibly impactful part of my journey. In prior treatment to New Haven, I was treated only as someone with many symptoms and behaviors with no deeper insight into what was causing it. By the time I got to New Haven, I carried so much deep-rooted trauma and false beliefs that I was spreading negativity and pain to myself and all those around me. When I finally started digging deep and doing the work in therapy, it was like I was a new person.
I slowly began to discover the core meaning—the absolute truths about myself that were always there all along. I discovered my inherent worth and I started to believe that I was truly deserving of love. My therapist encouraged me to hold onto a visual representation of something that portrayed this core meaning, and that object—a little white swan—is a symbol I still hold close to me today. The work was not easy, but it was worth it. These vital tools I was given at New Haven paved the way for my future development and growth.
How would you describe your family relationships now?
My relationship with my family today is thankfully extremely strong and stable. Seven years ago, this was not the case—I had a pretty rocky relationship with my parents built on distrust and layers of pain. Our communication was extremely limited, and I played a victim role in my family. Now our relationship is stronger than it has ever been. Because of New Haven, I have grown very close with my parents, and I have become like a second parent to my little siblings. My family and I share mutual respect and trust for each other, we create bonding moments often, and it has become a joint giving and receiving relationship. Because of New Haven, my family and I now know how to repair wounds, share often, and love unconditionally.