Though the majority of teens are unwilling to attend residential treatment, most of them are professionally transported by experts in the field. Parents spend a lot of time and stress about this part of the decision, but hiring a professional in this field can lessen the worries. They are trained to work with at-risk youth and will ask you all about your child before they arrive. In speaking with many parents and teens that have successfully used transports, the feedback is overwhelmingly positive.
At the end of the day, your teen truly wants to feel good about themselves again, too. They want to be that happy child that you remember. Remember, they were once a good kid, and they can become that good person again. Being a teenager isn't easy, and parenting that child when you have reached your wit's end is a challenge. Knowing you are not alone helps!
TAKE AWAY TIPS FOR PARENTS:
When seeking residential treatment, I always encourage parents to look for three key components that I call the ACE factor:
Accredited Academics (Ask to see their accreditation): Education is important, some programs actually don't offer it.
Clinical (Credentialed therapists on staff): Please note--on staff.
Enrichment Programs (Animal assisted programs, culinary, fine arts, sports etc): Enrichment Programs are crucial to your child's program. They will help build self-esteem and stimulate them in a positive direction. Find a program with something your teen is passionate about, or used to be passionate prior their path in a negative direction.
I also encourage parents to avoid three red flags:
Marketing arms and sales reps (All those toll-free numbers, be careful of who you are really speaking to and what is in the best interest of your child.)
Short term programs (Wilderness programs or otherwise, rarely is there a quick fix. Short term program are usually short term results. They usually will then convince you to go into a longer term program after you are there a few weeks--why not just start with one? Consistency is key in recovery. An average program is 6-9-12 months, depending on your child's needs and the program.)
Statistics that show their success rate (I have yet to see any program or school have a third party--objective survey--perform a true statistical report on a program's success. Success is an individual's opinion. You have to do your own due diligence and call parent references.)
For more information about researching residential therapy and helpful tips, visit http://www.helpyourteens.com and don't forget to review the list of questions for schools and programs so you can make an educated decision.
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