User post: Is love enough to help a troubled teen?

A childhood friend of one of my daughters is in an adolescent treatment center. She tried to kill herself. She is 17. I have known her since she was 6 years old. She had spent at least one night a week staying over at my house since she was 6. My daughter was best friends with her older sister. They were 9 and she would tag along. I remember my daughter asking me once to tell her that she couldn't come because they didnt want her along. I took one look at her eyes, wide open, and happy because she thought she would be invited, and I just could not oblige my daughter's request. By the time she was 10, she was over here at least 3 nights a week.

She is a great kid. Her home life has always been a disaster. When things would get out of hand, I would have her come stay over here. I wished then that she could just stay here because she was such a doll to have around. Yes, she was difficult and wayward. But she was a lonely kid, desperate for affection and direction. I have plenty of affection and love telling people what to do so it was a perfect fit.

Then last year, my daughter moved away to go to college. I haven't had contact with her other than occasional phone calls and rare lunch or dinner during the past year and a half.

Right now she is doing great. She is going to be discharged July 3rd. She turns 18 July 18th. She is coming over for her birthday and to stay with me for visit. I am going to have her do yard work to pay for my old car and she is going to stay here while she does that. I would like to ask her if she would like to live here.

Is love and safe home enough to help a troubled teen?