You have exhausted all your local resources.
Your teen is refusing local therapy - not that it is working at this point anyway.
Your teen has so much academic potential, however is refusing to put any effort forward.
Your teen has literally become someone you barely recognize - and you realize if you don't intervene you may not get another chance.
Is it your fault?
Is it the school?
Is it their friends?
We can waste time with the blame game all day and night long, but in the end it is your teen that is making these negative choices and it is your responsibility as a parent to make the right ones.
So as many parents do - they hit the keyboard and are bombarded in a new and scarey world of the big business of "teen help".
Red flags -red lights -and fear can quickly run through your mind - not to mention the sticker shock of many of these programs and schools.
Take the time to breath and learn about exactly what residential therapy is and how it can help your child.
I always encourage parents to recognize a few key points:
- You are not looking to punish your child.
- Military school are not for struggling teens.
- Boot camps will not resolve any emotional issues.
- Scared Straight programs are usually non-effective and have short term effects.
- Wilderness programs are usually an expensive short term band-aid.
- Don't get sucked into "sales-people" that immediately can place your child.
- Be aware of these toll free numbers that you are clueless where you are calling.
- Websites can be deceiving.
Now think about this:
- Is the program licensed? Ask for a copy.
- Are they accredited academically? Ask for a copy of their certification.
- What are the credentials of their staff.
- What are the enrichment programs - so important!!!! We want to stimulate your child in a positive direction - this is not about beating your child down - it is about building them up. (such as: sports, animal assisted therapy, culinary arts, music, etc).
- What is the length of their program? Ideally 6-9-12 months is the average.
- Ask what the population of the students are - you don't want to place your teen out of their element.
I made a huge mistake over a decade ago - which prompted me to create Parents Universal Resource Experts', Inc. We are about educating parents on today's daunting task of finding the best placement for your at-risk teenager.