series of articles on abuse and neglect that happens in residential programs for teens and kids.
We are in 2012 - a time when you would think that transparency of all schools and programs should be a given. Unfortunately, like I also learned the hard way, when it comes to the big business of "teen help" and parents are at their wit's end - they can fall prey to most anything that sounds like relief.
This is one of the reasons I created my organization, Parents' Universal Resource Experts, Inc (P.U.R.E.) I felt there wasn't any place I could turn that could give me reliable information.
PURE helps educate parents and gives them insights to a very daunting industry. Though you initially think you are looking for a boot camp type environment (thinking you want to teach your child a lesson) you will soon realize that your teen is crying out for help. Searching for a program that has an ACE factor (A-academic, C-clinical, E-enrichment) will serve your teen much better.
Another misconception parents have is that Military Schools are for troubled teens. This couldn't be further from the truth. The majority of legitimate Military Schools such as Admiral Faragut in Clearwater, Florida, will only accept students with a certain GPA, in many cases a teen has to write an essay of why they want to attend.
Some parents may find some Military Schools that will accept an unwilling child, but what happens next you won't be so happy with. If he/she get expelled, chanced are very good you will then forfeit your tuition. Are you ready for that? The other emotional component of this is - setting your child up for failure will only serve to do him/her more emotional damage and probably cause more defiance and resentment.
Many parents are dealing with good kids making bad choices. Many parents are dealing with kids experimenting with substances. We need to take this all very serious today. Remember it is not the pot of yesterday. It is being laced with stronger elements and even addictive ones. Entitlement issues today are a common thread - kids simply have too much and have no boundaries.
It doesn't matter what your issues are, if you have reached the point where you are convinced you need residential therapy, please contact PURE and talk to us. We have free consultations. If you have a list of programs that you are considering, we can go down that list with you. We have visited a large number of programs in our country. We also receive feedback from parents, students and even employees frequently.
Talk to us.... don't risk sending your child into harms way. This is a major financial and emotional decision. It is a parent's responsibility to get their child help - you don't have to fear it - you just have to be smart about it.
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Read my story here. My book - Wit's End! Advice and Resources for Saving your Out of Control Teen.
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Recently I was interviewed by Career Thoughts.
Parents' Universal Resource Experts, Inc was created after I was duped online by trying to get my own daughter help. I was a parent at my wit's end. I was vulnerable - I was scammed - and my daughter suffered the consequences.
Many people have asked about her, and she is now a grown woman, successful in her career and has two children of her own. We have overcome the hurdles - not because of the horrific program she went to, but in spite of it - and because of the fantastic help we found after it to help de-programize her from the damage they did to her.
I always share with parents to learn from my mistake and gain from my knowledge. That is the biggest gift I can give.
Enjoy this article -click here.
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Feeling good has a lot to do with the choices your teen makes regarding their health.
The life of a teen is filled with choices, and most teens do not base decisions on their health, future, or long-term risks. Keeping up teens' health ultimately falls on the parents' shoulders, even though most teens are already making many of their own choices.
If you struggle finding a balance when it comes to your teen's health or want to be sure that you're doing as much as you can with the time you do have, here are a few simple ways to make a big impact on the health of your teen:
1. Require consistent exercise. There is no need to be a drill sergeant or make exercise feel like a chore, but there is something to be said for requiring exercise from your children. Whether they take up a sport, enroll in a dance program, or just join the gym with you, teens need to start now with a consistent exercise program for optimum health in the future.
2. Buy daily vitamins in gummy form. Daily vitamins are no fun. And, it's difficult as a parent to, a) remember to dole them out, and, b) make sure your kids actually take them. But, vitamins should no longer be a dreaded routine. The vitamin gummies offered today are delicious and taste like candy. Teens will want to take more than their daily share.
3. Fill plates with more greens and fruits and less grains and protein. The FDA has recently re-vamped the old standard of food charts and opted for something simpler: a plate divided into four sections. Half the plate is filled with vegetables and fruits. The remainder contains a fourth grains and a fourth protein. This is a simple and easy way to see that your teens are getting the proper servings of the food they need.
4. Restrict TV to certain hours. Monitoring TV hours is a challenge, especially when teens have become accustomed to turning them on whenever they want. But, in order to maintain optimum health, the TV has to go once in a while. Teens need time and space to go outside, call friends, read, create, and do other things that help maintain a balanced life. This can be as simple as turning them off during regular chunks of time when you know you'll be around.
5. Make doctors' appointments a part of the norm. Many of us restrict doctor's appointments to emergency visits when we come down with the flu and need a quick prescription. But, it's very important to get your teen started with regular physicals and preventative doctor's visits. This will get them in the habit of seeking out the advice of a physician and setting dates for those much-needed physicals.
6. Talk about sensitive health topics early-on. Instead of waiting until the last minute, it's important to discuss any health topics that your teen needs to know as early as possible. This applies to the menstrual cycle, the birds and the bees, and your preference on the best forms of contraceptives or abstinence. Waiting until your teen finds out about these hugely important issues from friends, television shows, or the school counselor means that you have missed the chance to help form extremely important choices your teens will make and prepare them for life events that will come up soon.
7. Drink more water, and get rid of soda. This is simple, but definitely worth it. The health benefits of drinking enough water cannot be overstated, and the harmful effects of soda have been well-documented. Most soda contains such a huge amount of sugar that the body has difficulty digesting it properly. Once and a while, it's fine, but make sure your teens are reaching for something else on a daily basis.
Contributor: Leslie Johnson is a freelance writer for www.mastersinhealthcare.com.
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Wednesday, October 3, 2012
- Planking- Kids have taken what started out being a move done for strengthening the core to a trend that was kind of cute to something downright dangerous. Planking is where you lay face down on any surface and have your picture taken. The picture is then uploaded to Facebook or some other social media site. Teens turned this fun trend into a dangerous stunt when they started planking on things like escalators, moving cars, trains and rooftops.
- Car surfing- Instead of surfing in the water standing on a surfboard, teens are standing on moving cars. Some start by standing on the trunk with the car moving very slowly, and in an effort to continually raise the stakes they have moved to more even more dangerous locations on the car, and now teens have been killed doing this.
- Smoking Smarties- According to tutorials online, the candy is crushed to a fine powder and the end of the tube is opened and the powder is puffed and inhaled like smoke. On the surface the activity is not illegal or all that harmful, but it could lead to infections and chronic coughing. The bigger concern is that this behavior could lead to more dangerous experimentation with drugs in the future.
- Vodka eyeballing- To avoid getting caught with alcohol on their breath, teens have started pouring vodka directly in their eyes. The alcohol is absorbed through the mucus membrane and goes directly into the blood stream. This trend has been shown to cause blindness in a worst case scenario, but at a minimum it can burn the cornea and cause scarring.
- Chatroulette- Chatroulette.com is a site that connects users through their web cams with people from all over the world for live chat sessions. They do have filters which allow the user to speak to only English speakers or only females. While the policy on chatroulette is against nudity and other inappropriate activities, risky behavior still happens. Sexual predators could use this medium as a way to interact and ultimately harm kids.
- Purple drank- Drinking this mix of jolly ranchers, cough syrup with codeine and Sprite can lead to hallucinations and is extremely toxic. Kids love to copy the next celebrity trend, and for some celebrities, this purple drink it is.
- Rainbow parties- A group of girls at a party will wear various shades of lipstick and perform oral sex on the same guys. At the end of the evening the genitals of the guys have many colors of lipstick, thus mimicking a rainbow.
- Choking game- The choking game is where kids choke each other or themselves with various things like belts or scarves, to cut off the flow of blood to their brain in order to get a high. When the choking stops the blood goes back to the brain quickly and they get a natural high. Many teens who have tried this have passed out doing it and could, and have, died of asphyxiation.
- Distilling hand sanitizer- By combining salt with liquid hand sanitizer the alcohol can be distilled out of it. The alcohol is very strong and some teens who have drank it have ended up in the ER with alcohol poisoning.
- Rummy bears- Kids and adults alike are soaking gummy bears in various alcohols, like rum or vodka. The gummy soaks up the alcohol and kids are said to be eating them at school and getting buzzed.
Need help with your teen? Visit www.helpyourteens.com.