Showing posts from March, 2011

Jail is not an option..... Troubled teens? Get help today

There are parents that believe that their teenager needs to be taught a lesson - learn to appreciate what they have, understand that respect is expected not a choice.

However what many parents, in their time of anger and frustration, don't realize is that their teen isn't happy with themselves either.  They are crying out for help with their negative behavior.

Seeking a scared straight program or even a boot camp can be more damage than parents realize.  You are taking a broken child and beating them down even more (emotionally - if not psychically).

Is your teen using drugs?  Smoking pot?  Suspended or expelled from school?  Failing? Hanging with a new group of kids that are not on their way to a bright future?

Don't be a parent in denial but don't make rash choices.  Having your teen arrested may end up doing more than teaching him/her a lesson.  Who will they meet in juvie?  What will this accomplish?

There are options.  Take your time - do your research.  Visit www…


Since my story broke in 2001 - the stories have not stopped with allegations of abuse, neglect, fraud etc.  How many lawsuits have been settled with confidentiality statements and a check?  I have heard of many.  I have seen the settlement agreements.  I was not one of those parents - I was able to fight legally and defeated them at a jury trial!  In Salt Lake City - a city of their peers - no one condones child abuse.

They couldn't defeat me legally - so they took to the Internet - helping to create and instigate slime, lies, defamation and more against myself and my family as well as my organization.  Although they weren't directly named in my lawsuit for Internet defamation and Invasion of Privacy, discovery proved their name came up more times than they wanted - I am sure.  Not to mention the defendant was given WWASPS attorney's to defend her.  Yes, the web of lies and deceit never ends.  However it all comes full circle.... Please read my Blog below this one for more…

Red River Academy, Pilars of Hope, Horizon Academy, Cross Creek = WWASPS?


If you read my Blogs, most know my story.  From the time my daughter turned 14 and started giving me a handful of troubles, to finding a so-called  teen-help program that make me a lot of promises.  Not only were the promises broken, my daughter endured abuse both physically (being placed in a box for 17 hours), sleeping in sewage and other indescribable things - forced me into starting a crusade (as some have put it) to let parents that are desperate know more about this big business of "teen help".

Here we are - almost a decade later, and the program that harmed my daughter (did I mention I defeated them in a jury trial?) is finally closed.  Carolina Springs Academy also known recently as Magnolia Christian School (both affiliated with WWASPS) closed their doors.  Hopefully it is for good.  However, that didn't stop the owners, Lichfield brothers, from going abroad.

The recent news from The Tico Times: Child Welfare Office closes yet another teen…

Troubled Teens: The Blame Game

It is all the kids he/she is hanging out with, it is not my teen.  If it weren't for those bad influences, my child would never act like that - or smoke pot.....

Really - you want to believe that so badly, but in reality if your teen that is making the choice not only to hang with that negative peer group, he/she is also part of it!  So another parent of a teen he/she is hanging with is saying the same thing.

Your teen has choices, he/she is making a choice of who their so-called friends are.  Your teen is making the decision to smoke pot.  Your teen is making a choice to stop studying and heading down a negative path.

It is no different than a parent making a choice to be friends with their neighbor, who may not be the biggest gossip in the town. 

If your teen is making bad choices that are escalating to a point that you are no longer able to control him/her, it is time to look at parent choices.  Seeking local therapy, youth groups, outpatient facilities and even looking for hel…

Education Consultants (EC's) - The EC Shuffle

Over and over again I will hear from parents that are either considering hiring an Educational Consultant, or have hired one.

What is an Educational Consultant? (EC)  They are an individual that may or may not have qualifications to help you place your troubled teen into a treatment center.  Years ago, EC's were mainly used for parents that needed help in finding the right colleges for their teens, help with their applications etc.

As our world turned, the need for help in the troubled teen industry grew.  It became a new outlet for EC's to make money.  As the Internet was growing, more and more parents and teens were able to do all their college searches online - and get information at their finger tips. 

Well, the Internet has expanded again - with the help of Facebook, Blogs, forums etc more parents are able to do their searches for residential therapy without the help and extra fees of an EC.  However, it is difficult to decide what is best for your teenager or what onlin…

When Parenting Books and DVD's Don't Work

Your teen or tween is starting to act in ways that are foreign to you.  Whether they are hanging with peers that are less than desirable or starting to fail in school when you know they are more than capable.  They are underachieving, they are good kids making some bad choices and slowly escalating into a person you barely recognize.

Many of us read those baby books before our first child came into the world – and after he or she arrived, we always opened a parenting book with answers and explanations.  But when it comes to teenage time – it can be a totally different story!

Defiance is the tone of your home, and disrespect has become second nature.

First you try therapy or counseling, there has to be something physically wrong.  In most cases, that is not the story.  There usually isn't a pill to fix a teen that is spiraling out-of-control.

During these therapy sessions, you are gathering and reading as many parenting teen booksas possible!  Now you find a DVD that makes prom…

Treatment for Troubled Teens - Teen Help

You have come to a point that therapy isn't working, your teen is out of control, they are saying they are going to drop out of school, and not attending classes - now you found out they are smoking pot, maybe worse.  Of course we then shift into the blame game!

Stop, listen to yourself -and take action.  Don't be a parent in denial - get your teen the help they need.  The Internet is a confusing and daunting experience, however a necessary tool when trying to decipher a field you are totally foreign to.

Parent networking is priceless!  Talk to other parents that have had similar experiences.

Move forward from wanting teach your teen that they need to appreciate what they have - it just won't happen in a boot camp, scared straight or even wilderness.  Sure - you will break them down "temporarily" but what happens with that "fright" wears off?

Need help?  Visit www.HelpYourTeens.comwhere your family is our priority - building your teen up and helping the…

Wilderness Programs: Are they worth it?

For the many people that know me, they know I don't believe in Wilderness programs, nor do I advocate for short term programs.  This doesn't mean there aren't reputable Wilderness programs in our country.  There are, however chances are very good, after your teen attends one - within the first 30 days, the program will tell you it is likely you will need to go on to a residential therapy program.  Which means....
More moneyAnother tripAnother therapistAnother scheduleEtc....Back to the first one - the costs are exuberant for Wilderness, and to combine it with another at least $50K for a boarding school is simply out of the equation for many families.

I am writing this information today for two reasons.  One, I have received several calls this week alone by parents that fell for the Wilderness road.  Now they are out of money and need  a program, but the funding is no where to be found.  What do you do?  Their teen is back to the streets - smoking the dope and f…

When Therapy Doesn't Work

Going to therapy seems to be the first step parents take when they realize their tween or teen is starting to go down a negative path.

It is important to find a therapist that specialize with adolescents - one that understands the "teen talk".

But what happens when therapy isn't working?  What happens when your teens starts to manipulate the therapist?  What happens when the therapist believes it is time for the next step?

It is time to look for a boarding school, one that offers the support your teen needs both emotionally and academically.  It is important to understand, although education is absolutely a necessity, you have to realize that the teens needs to be emotionally balanced in order to do well at anything. 

This doesn't mean you look at programs that don't offer academics, such as many Wilderness programs, parents need to keep 3 major issues in their mind.
Academic's/EducationClinical/TherapyEnrichment Programs/Extra-Curriculum ActivitiesDon't s…

Teens Cussing, Swearing and Belligerent Attitude

In the baby's (teen's) ears and out of their mouth.

Swearing, cussing and meanness, that is how many school hallways are described.  When does a teen start using these four letter words?

How can we move from a cussing culture of cruelty to one of compassion and caring?

McKay Hatch, 17 year-old California student created a No Cussing Club in 2007.  Isn't it time that Broward County and others follow this lead?

Take the No Cussing Challenge, changing the world one word at a time...

The words we use affect how we feel about ourselves, how others react to us and how others feel about themselves.  Our words truly shape our world.

Thousands of people have taken this challenge and told the No Cussing Club about the positive affect it has had in their lives.

Does cussing lead to bullying or instigate bullying?  According to a recent NY Times article, some experts say the notion that cursing leads to bullying is misguided. The American Academy of Pediatrics recently added a secti…

Teen Drug Addiction

With today's society, kids have access to many different substances that can be addictive and damaging. If you suspect your child is using drugs or drinking alcohol, please seek help for them as soon as possible. Drug testing is helpful, but not always accurate. Teen Drug use and Teen Drinkingmay escalate to addiction.
We get calls constantly, that a child is only smoking pot. Unfortunately in most cases, marijuana can lead to more severe drugs, and marijuana is considered an illegal drug. Smoking marijuana is damaging to the child's body, brain and behavior. Even though marijuana is not considered a narcotic, most teens are very hooked on it.

Many teens that are on prescribed medications such as Ritalin, Adderall, Strattera, Concerta, Zoloft, Prozac etc. are more at risk when mixing these medications with street drugs. It is critical you speak with your child about this and learn all the side effects.  Educating your chi…

Troubled Teens and Parents at their Wit's End

What happened to that sweet 5 year-old you sent off to Kindergarten? 
What happened to that athletic tween that loved T-Ball?
What happened to my little angel that loved going to the mall with me?
What happened to my child that always worked so hard to get good grades and always worked to make me proud?

Where did their childhood go?

Today's society is challenging for teenagers - but can be even more distressful for their parents.  When slowly they watch their good child turn into a tween or teen that they barely recognized.  Underneath the questionable clothing, the piercings we had to reluctantly agree to - and the tattoos they got on their own - our child is deep in there somewhere!

After exhausting all local resources, whether it is an excellent adolescent therapist to local support groups and even out-patient facilities, you are looking at a teen that is heading down a dark road.  It is time for parents to dig deep and find the strength to get their teen the help they need - u…