Tampa, Florida - The Debra LaFave case became an international story overnight. And the 14-year-old victim became one of the most talked about teens in recent memory. That has been one of the most difficult parts for his mother.
Victim's mother: "It's a very big distraction for him at school, because that's all anyone talks about, and he just wants to focus on school and having fun with his friends, and just living a normal life."
That's why the victim and his family agreed to a plea deal that did not include prison time. They want out of the spotlight, despite the pain that remains.
"You think you're sending your children off to school, that they're there to protect your children, and I think that's the most appalling thing to this situation is that you have a teacher that spotted what she wanted and did what she did. Just an incredible breach in trust."
And she says, she is hopeful her son will eventually return to the normal life of a now 16 year old boy who wants to play pro basketball one day.
"I think things happen in your life that a lot of times make you stronger because of your experiences, and I absolutely believe this will be the end result of that."
And at the end, she says she has forgiven Debra LaFave.
"I think that if you don't forgive, it's more detrimental to you inside that doesn't do anyone any good. I pray she gets the help that she needs."
Jennifer Howe, Tampa Bay's 10 News