Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Educational Consultants and Teen Help Programs

At your wit's end? Who can help?
When a parent first hits that brick wall of having a teen that is out-of-control they literally are clueless at who to call or what to look up on the Internet.

Being in the dark can lead to making rash decisions and this is something you don't want to do when it comes to your child.

Some parents assume that Educational Consultants are the experts to turn to for placement of troubled teens and in some cases, that may be true.  However, like with many other purchases in life, you need to know what you are buying into.

Educational Consultants were originally designed to help parents with their teens to find the right colleges and with the application process. As many know, this has been replaced with CollegeBoard and many other websites online.

As the shift in teen help increased, they seemed to branch out into the residential treatment field.  Most have not experienced what you are going through.  Most do not know what you are dealing with at home.  Only an experienced parent that has been there really knows that feeling of helplessness.  Which is why I created Parents' Universal Resource Experts, Inc.

We are parents - we have walked your shoes.  After experiencing an extremely difficult time with my own teenager - surfing the Internet - being scammed online - my teen being harmed at a program that misrepresented themselves, I decided to take a closer look at this teen help industry.

After years of visiting schools and programs, collecting years of feedback (from parents, students and employees), background researches, on-site visits, etc... We offer parents advice and educated tips on looking at schools and programs. 

The last thing parents need to get involved in, in our opinion, is an EC (Educational Consultant) Shuffle. What is the EC Shuffle? Find out more and try not to get into the mix.  We do not employ this type of assistance for your needs.  "The EC I spoke with only wants $500.00, that seems fair."   Remember the cliché you get what you pay for, yes, you will find some Educational Consultants that will only charge $500.00 but you also get limited services usually including the EC Shuffle with a list of programs.  Nothing more than you could have found on your own in a few Internet searches.

Some Educational Consultants are fair and don't employ this type of method.   Please remember this is your child and no one knows him better than you.  Do you really need a middle person for your child?  Shouldn't the program speak directly to you?  Save yourself $5000.00 and find the right for your child.  It may take you a day or two longer, but you can do it.  Sometimes it doesn't take that long - it is all about knowing the right questions - and at www.helpyourteens.com - we have helpful tips and hints to guide you.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Teen Anger: Dealing with Teen Rage

Speaking with parents on a daily basis, I hear a lot about how teens can go into a rage, especially when they don’t get what they want.  It seems family values and respect for parents and authority has diminished in today’s generation.  I am not talking about all families, but many that I speak with, they don’t understand where there once happy toddler went.

Here is a good guest post with five possible reason that can cause teen anger:

5 Ways to Make Your Teenager Angry
Any parent of a teenager knows that one of the main emotions associated with that age is, you guessed it, anger. In fact, most people simply refer to their teenager as an “angry teen” and write off those emotions as a simple fact of life during that age. While this is definitely true, it is also imperative to treat your teen with as much care and respect as you would any other loved one, even if they treat you with the opposite of care and respect, at times. As a parent, you can’t write off your teen’s anger. In fact, if you’re not careful, you run the risk of making them seriously angry at you, rather than simply angry at the world. Here’s how:
 1. Don’t Listen to What They Have to Say
One of the most important things to do while your kids are teenagers is to try to foster and maintain communication. Even if your teen would rather walk home in the snow than talk to you about his day, you have to take advantage of any communication you can get. And, most importantly, when you do get the opportunity to communicate, focus less on what you would like to say to them and more on what they have to say to you. You could be so occupied with worrying about the next thing you think you should tell them that you can miss hugely important clues about your teens life and how he or she is feeling.
2. Tell Them They Are Just Being a Teen
Talk about being written off! And at the absolute worst time in life to feel that way, no less. Never, ever make the mistake of treating your teen like their opinions or emotions are invalid simply because they are going through their “teens.” There is nothing that will push your child away faster or make them feel more annoyed and insulted.
3. Don’t Practice What You Preach
You may feel like you can relax a little once your kids are grown up, without the worry of them repeating things they shouldn’t say or copying behaviors they shouldn’t be copying. It’s easy to feel like you can cut back on trying to provide an example. But, even if it doesn’t feel like it, your teen is still watching you and emulating your behavior. If you are constantly lecturing them about following through on their homework, you better take the trash out if that is one of your family chores or remove foul language from your vocabulary if you expect the same from them. If you are going to ask your teen to follow through on things they say they will do, you absolutely must set that example.
4. Make Them Feel Isolated
When your teen suddenly prefers to lock herself in her room, music blaring, rather than hang out with the family, it can be easy to just leave them alone up there and not bother. Once invitations have been rejected so many times, you can begin to feel like it would be better to stop bothering them altogether. However, your teen still needs to feel like a relevant and important member of the family, or else you run the risk of creating a feeling of isolation that could continue into the later teen years.
5. Don’t Prepare Them for Plans
This is another area where parents sometimes feel that it’s better to stay away than address an issue or upcoming plan with their teen. Things like letting them know that you will be going out of town in two weeks, or that you want to have a family movie night on Friday, are simple to throw on your teen last minute, especially when they act like they could care less. The truth is, in the moment, they probably don’t care. But that doesn’t mean that you should surprise them by springing plans on them last minute. Sometimes teens, just like anyone else, need a little time to mentally prepare for upcoming events, and being forced to do something without warning is a surefire recipe for a breakdown.

Join me on Facebook  and follow me on Twitter for more information and educational articles on parenting today’s teenagers.

Need help, contact Parents' Universal Resource Experts for a free consultation.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Intelligent Teen Making Bad Choices

What happened to my teen that as making straight A's always so concerned about getting their homework done on time, participated in school activities and looked forward to family gatherings?

Adolescence? Peer pressure?  Today's society? A school incident such as bullying/cyberbullying?

Sometimes it could be something a parent can't detect however they do see their once flourishing child now sinking into a deep dark hole.  They are either gravitating to a negative peer group or withdrawing all together, becoming secretive and actually failing school.  Sometimes skipping classes or not attending school at all.  Do you suspect they are using drugs or drinking?

What is the next step?

Seeking local help and all local resources should always be the first step.  Once you have exhausted all these options and you still see your child is sinking deeper, it may be time to consider residential therapy.  This is a major emotional and financial decision.

This will take time and research.  The Internet will be your friend and your foe at this point.  It is important you understand the difference between Internet fact and Internet fiction. Who to trust and who is simply "selling" you a litany of programs.

For a free consultation on this daunting industry, and a free chapter of my book, Wit's End! Advice and Resources for Saving Your Out of Control Teens, visit www.helpyourteens.com.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Teen Help Programs - Tips in looking for safe and quality programs

Are you looking for residential therapy for your at-risk teenager?

Are they a good teen making bad choices?  You don't want to place them in a school or program that has a hard-cord element, a type of teen that will actually create more negative issues.

After all, your teen is highly intelligent, was once a rising athlete, interested in sports, music or other clubs at school or even in your community.  Now they are hanging out with less than desirable peers and have become someone you don't even recognize.

You hop on the Internet, as most 2012 parents do and start typing in all sort of key words - and before you know it - you are bombarded with all sorts of programs and schools and "sales reps" that seem to have answers - or so you think.

This is when you need to step back and understand that YES, you do need help, you do need an intervention and you do need to remove your teen from their environment enable to get them the help they need.  Let's face it, therapy isn't working anymore - if you can even get them to attend.

My mantra has been - learn from my mistakes when I wen through this.  Read - www.aparentstruestory.com - and you will see you need to take your time.  It is not to scare you - it is to educate you.

Here are a few tips to remember:
  • Look for programs that are not attached to "sales reps".  You want to speak directly to an owner or director.  Someone that has a vested interest in your teen.  Someone that their reputation will be reflected on your child's success (or lack of).  Someone who you can hold accountable through the duration of your teen's stay.  
  • Look for the ACE factor.  A=Academics - Always ask for a copy of their accreditation for education - be sure it is transferable back to where you live.  C=Clinical - Be sure the clinical staff is credentialed. E=Enrichment programs - These are critical to be sure your teen is stimulated in a positive direction to want to make better choices.  This isn't about breaking your child down, it is about building them up.
  • Ask for parent references of parents with the same gender and age of your own teenager.  Also take it a step further.  Ask for families that are in your same geographical area.  This way maybe you will be able to meet with them and possibly even the graduate of the program you are considering.
  • Keep in mind - Short term programs - short term results.  Don't get sucked into them.  
I have many more tips and offer free parent consultation at www.HelpYourTeens.com.  

Don't reach your wit's end and make a rash decision - made an education choice.... Be an educated parent - this a major emotional and financial decision.