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Troubled Teens: Making the Difficult Decisions of Residential Treatment Centers

TroubledTeen5When it comes to sending your child to residential therapy it is probably one of the hardest decisions a parent can make.  It just doesn’t seem normal to send your teenager to a behavioral modification program.  Let’s face it – we all know that sending them to college is part of the circle of life, but no one prepares us for the potholes that some families face – residential treatment centers.

As the holidays approach a teenager’s behavior can sometimes escalate and this can leave a parent with a decision that they don’t want to make.  How can they send their child into a teen help program during this time of the year?

As a Parent Advocate and Parent Consultant, I share with parents that you have many years ahead of you to have many wonderful holidays together – however in some cases, it can mean saving your child’s life by removing them from not-so-safe situations – especially if they are involved in drug use or hanging out with unsavory groups of what they consider friends.  With the extra time off from school -it sometimes can add up to more time for trouble.

Are you struggling with your teenager?  Confused about what school or program is best for their needs?  I founded Parent’s Universal Resource Experts, Inc over a decade ago for parents that are at their wit’s end – after I was duped and my daughter abused at a program that mislead us.  Our experiences are only to help educate parents – there are more good programs than there are not so good one.  It is up to you to do your due diligence.

Remember, family is a priority – your child’s welfare comes first.  There will always be more holidays – let’s be sure your child’s safety and security are first and foremost.

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

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Teen Help Programs: The Internet Search

You have finally reached your wit’s end with your teenager.

You have exhausted all your local resources, your nerves are fried, you have removed all their privileges and nothing is making a difference – you are literally a hostage to your own child!

What now?

It is time for outside help… but you get online and realize first the sticker shock…. (price of programs and schools) then you see all these horror stories – EXACTLY WHO SHOULD YOU BELIEVE?

Your gut!

Years ago I was in your exact spot – and I didn’t listen my gut, and the results were not good, however it had a purpose.  The reason was to be a part of helping parents not make the mistakes I did.

When you get online you will see many toll free numbers going to places unknown.  Usually sales reps that will more than happily give you a list of programs that they believe will be perfect for your child – but how do they know?

Point is – you don’t want a sales rep – you don’t want a marketing arm, you want an owner, a director or someone that will be vested in your child’s recovery and healing process.  Someone that will be held accountable – their reputation will be reflected upon your child’s success.

I created an organization that helps educate parents to better understand the big business of residential therapy.  There are questions parents need to ask, that many don’t think about while they are desperate for help such as when will they be able to speak with their child or visit their child.

I encourage you to visit www.helpyourteens.com and find out more about residential therapy – especially if you are considering the next step.  Don’t wait for a crisis to happen.  Be prepared.

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

Is your teenager the problem?

Hmmm, well, this is a bold and common statement I hear quite frequently so when a new friend/colleague mentioned she has a book coming out this spring with this title, I was intrigued.  After all, as a parent that struggled with a teen that was less than perfect, and liked to convince me that “I” was the problem, this book just may go flying off the shelves.

My Teenager Is The Problem” is written by Ronae Jull, the Hope Coach.

A bit about this new book…..

Do you struggle with that one family member who constantly challenges your serenity, twists your stomach into knots and keeps you up at night, questioning your sanity? If that family member is your teenager, you’re not alone.

Teenagers can cause feelings of anger, incompetence, and helplessness in even the most confident parents. Regardless of how successful your professional life, your home keeping skills, or your other relationships,parenting a teen can challenge your resolve to remain calm and mindful when dealing with him or her.

Maybe you’ve come to feel that you shouldn’t have become a parent, you can’t do anything right, and that your teen may not make it to his or her adult years in one piece.

You don’t have to feel this way.

Order My Teenager IS the Problem! today and recapture peace and sanity for you and your family. The book — authored by The HOPE Coach, Ronae Jull — provides specific step-by-step strategies, guaranteed to save your teen and renew your peace-of-mind.

Read just a few of the proven solutions offered in this amazing book below:

Creating and enforcing boundaries

  • Dealing with bad attitudes
  • Substance abuse
  • Dealing with and stopping rage
  • Helping your depressed teen
  • Coping with bullying behavior
  • Helping your mentally ill teen
  • …and much more…

For more information on Ronae Jull and her services, visit her website at www.RonaeJull.com.  You can follow Ronae Jull on Twitter and join her on Facebook!

As a Parent Advocate and Author of a parenting book on residential therapy, Parent Coaching can be an avenue a family can use prior taking the step into residential therapy.

Specialty Boarding Schools – Horizon Academy, Red River Academy – What are they?

Hold on, you will find the RIGHT help, just don't panic....

HELP – Who do I trust!!! What website is really telling me the truth?  Where are these toll free numbers really going to?  How do I know these people really care about my teenager?

Scary huh?  Yes, I was there over a decade ago – and unfortunately – today the same organization that harmed my daughter has moved on (though re-named themselves) are still practicing from what I have heard.  This is, of course, my experiences.

Troubled teens, teen help, struggling teens, at-risk teens, problem teens, difficult teens, boot camps, military schools, behavior modification, specialty schools, specialty programs, teen help programs, boarding schools, residential treatment centers, residential therapy, emotional growth programs, therapeutic boarding schools, wilderness programs, defiant teens, manipulative teens, disengaged from the family, family conflict, hopelessness, WIT’S END….

You have about reached your wit’s end when you are searching the web and typing in about every keyword you believe describes what you think you are looking for.  Glorified websites appear – maybe some not so beautiful, maybe you want a Christian setting, maybe you think a good boot camp or have that traditional thinking of an old fashioned military school…. however you will soon realize this isn’t 50 years ago.  There are legitimate residential therapeutic schools today and it is a parent job to do their research to be sure they find a safe and quality program that fits their individual needs.

After hours – days – even weeks (I have actually spoken to parents that have spent months) on the Internet, sometimes the confusion can deepen, which is why I did create Parents’ Universal Resource Experts.

With this – I am only sharing my own experiences…. and it has to do with the affiliated programs with the title of this Blog….

Are you confused yet? Looking for teen help and realizing this is a BIG BUSINESS?

So, your teen is driving your crazy.  You are at your wit’s end. You have finally decided you need outside help. You have exhausted all your local resources.  Local therapy doesn’t help, heck, you can’t even get your teen to attend.  Your teen is failing in school, he/she is very smart yet doesn’t want to attend school and believe they know it all.  Many say, “typical teen“, but as a parent, we know it is more than that.

Where did our good kid go?  Good kids making bad choices – and they don’t need to be placed in an environment that will make them worse in my opinion – learn from what happened to me!

As a victim of the WWASPS organization – I am often called or receive many emails about our (my daughter and I) experiences with them.  Obviously not pleasant.  Though I am happy to say the program she was at, Carolina Springs Academy, which attempted to go through a name change to Magnolia Christian Academy (or School) depending on the day you Googled it, is finally closed – it has been rumored some of the staff is now at their affiliate program – Red River Academy.

Let me be clear for legal purposes – these are rumors – but if I were placing my child in program, I personally wouldn’t take any chances – and furthermore, Red River Academy is clearly named in the current lawsuit which is extremely disturbing with allegations of fraud, abuse, neglect and much more – (click here) that is current.

Then we come to Horizon Academy.  Another alleged WWASPS facility.  Why say alleged?  Maybe they will deny they are affiliated – yet look at their staff, again, you will see they were once employed at other WWASPS programs.  Jade Robinson was at the program in Mexico (named in that lawsuit with alleged abuse and neglect) Casa By the Sea, then went on to Bell Academy, which didn’t last long, and I assume is trying to continue at Horizon Academy.

So when the “sales rep” tells you that “Sue Scheff” is a disgruntled parent – I say – YES, I was – you put my daughter in a box for 17 hours, she was mentally and emotionally abused – food and sleep deprived – I was complete defrauded – and she also missed out on 6 months of education.  None of which I had signed up for.  Grant it, this was 10 years ago – a lot has changed – but those original owners haven’t – so in my humble opinion – I wouldn’t trust any of their programs with my pets….. BTW: I am the only parent to have defeated WWASPS in a jury trial.  

Most of the other (many) lawsuits have settled out of court with silence agreements.  I don’t have one, which is why I can still share my story – which is why I get slimed online – which is why their sales reps have all sorts of stories about me – including “the jury made a mistake” – neglecting to tell you I won the appellate court too.  No one condones child abuse – period.

I have been called a crusader (and not in a flattering way) though I take it that way.  I have made it my mission to find the better programs and schools, since I do know what it is like to be at your wit’s end.  I know what parents need help. I am not against residential therapy, which brings us to many  of my stalkers that were formally abused in programs that believe all programs should be closed down.  That is being extreme – they are not a parent trying to save their child’s life and future.

I will share with you that there are more safe and quality programs than there are bad ones – it is just about doing your homework and research.  Today you are more fortunate than I was – you have more access to information and you can learn from my mistakes and  my knowledge.

Please – take 10 minutes to read my story and see the list of programs that are and were once affiliated with Carolina Springs Academy – and from there, you make your own choices for your child.

I had one parent that almost went to Red River Academy that actually said the sales rep said they could have their teen “extracted” within a few hours?  Extracted?  Really – is your child a tooth?  Please don’t get rushed into a quick decision – this is a major emotional and financial decision.

WWASPS can try to discredit me to parents, but I have been vindicated by many included legally and the media.

My organization is Parents’ Universal Resource Experts – and no matter what those “sales reps” or the Internet fiction – I don’t own, operate or manage any schools or programs!  We are about educating parents when they are looking for help for their at risk teen…. Don’t get scammed when you are at your wit’s end.

Oh – and when these “sales reps” send out these defamatory links about me – another FACT they neglect to tell you is I won the landmark case for Internet Defamation that awarded me $11.3M in damages for what was said about me online!  Lies and twisted facts!  Here is my recent appearance on Anderson Cooper.

This is strictly my opinion on my own experiences – you are free to make your choices…

Teen Help Advice: Parenting Teens 101

Don't be a parent in denial, get help today!

Recently launched yet has helped over 30,000 families, www.TeenHelpAdvice.com offers over 25+ years of combined experience in the big business of teen help schools and programs.

Offering sound and objective advice, the Teen Help Advisors are experts in the “business” of the teen help industry.  The good, the bad and the ugly.  Many parents are duped on a daily basis when they have reached their wit’s end.  They are feeling desperate – alone – and hopeless.

No more!  We have been there – I have been duped, my teen was abused and I am determined that this doesn’t happen to other parents as they believe they are getting help.

The questionable decision to hire an Educational Consultant (EC) can be answered very quickly.

Just yesterday (and many times prior) I hear from parents that have spent at least $2500 to as much as $5000.00 for the services of an Educational Consultant.  Yesterday this desperate mother, located in the Northeast, hired an EC months ago for her troubled teenage daughter.  It was determine she needed a smaller program and the EC said that Utah was the only place – there weren’t any options on the East Coast!  Now she is broke and her daughter still needs help.

Seriously?  There are options, but these options won’t play politics in the Educational Consultant industry.  So they are cut off from parents that are on the East Coast that hire EC’s and these parents honestly don’t know any better.

Even on the West Coast – this happens.  The same programs are rotated through the EC Shuffled – and very likely you are spending an additional $15K-20K on a Wilderness program first.  Their philosophy – they need to break your teen down!  Isn’t your teen already broken?  Why not start and finish at the same program?  Why put your teen through changing therapists and their peer support groups – not to mention their structure?  Don’t our teens need some positive consistency?

YES – they do.

Contact www.TeenHelpAdvice.com to learn more.

Tough Love: Is it Teen Help?

Order Wit's End Today!

How much is a parent supposed to tolerate before they reach their wit’s end?

How many times do you blame negative behavior on the friends they are hanging with, since your teen would never act like this? (Not my Kid)

How long do you continue to allow your teen to speak to you with disrespect and defiance?

How much is too much?

Let’s face it, parenting teens today has become more challenging than years before.  Think about your generation.  When your parent said to be home at 10:00pm, most were home by 9:50pm.  Why?  Because we respected our parents.  We also knew there would be consequences.

Was that considered tough love?  Not really, it was simply following the rules of the house.  These simple boundaries seem to have disappeared in many homes.

Is it because there are more single parent households?  Is it because most families have both parents working, meaning there is less supervision?

Without a doubt, the level of respect that some teens show today is despicable.  No matter what the reason is, your teen is creating tough love – and it gets tougher to love them as they continue to defy us, yet we will always love unconditionally.  Could this be why they push our buttons?

Years ago we rarely heard about residential therapy.  Today these boarding schools are busting at the seams as teens are learning to appreciate what they had at home.  Is residential therapy tough love?  No, residential therapy it is about regaining your child back. Tough love can be part of the process.

Visit www.helpyourteens.com and www.teenhelpadvice.com for more information for private residential therapy.

Be an educated parent, you will have safer and healthier teens.

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Addiction: It is more than substance abuse

Is social networking addictive?

Addiction is a strong word that a parent has difficulty accepting when it comes to their teens or young adult children.

Addictions are powerful chemical dependencies that don’t always make sense to outsiders or even psychologists, for that matter. What we do know is that if the brain likes what it tastes, feels or sees, anything and everything can become addictive.

Here are 25 addictions you didn’t know existed:

  1. Work Addiction: People joke about it, but work addictions really do exist. People who are addicted to work obsess over work and spend more than the necessary amount of time at work because it gives them a sense of fulfillment. Workaholics often experience broken relationships, emotional disconnection and other health-related problems.
  2. Eating Cigarette Ashes: Addiction to eating cigarette ashes is a form of pica disorder, in which a person craves foods with no nutritional value. People who eat cigarette ashes may have nutritional deficiencies or be anemic. Excessive consumption of cigarette ashes could be toxic and cause gastrointestinal issues.
  3. Tanning: Tanning addicts aren’t just soaking up the sun during summer — it’s a year-round activity. In order to release the pleasure-inducing (and addictive) endorphins in the brain, sun worshipers go to tanning salons and sunbathe outdoors to get their fix. Tanning addicts are in danger of developing serious skin cancers and increased signs of aging.
  4. Eating Chalk: Chalk eating is a common form of pica disorder that affect both children and adults. Even though it is labeled as non-hazardous, excessive chalk eating can be harmful to your health. Chalk may be contaminated during the manufacturing process and could contain metal shavings, rodent droppings and traces of chemicals that may be dangerous to ingest.
  5. Eating Glass: Glass eating, also called hyalophagia, is a pathological and pica disorder that is very dangerous. People who are addicted to eating glass may sustain internal injuries and have serious gastrointestinal issues. Glass eating has been a performance technique for years, and many addicts enjoy the attention that comes with eating glass.
  6. Hair Pulling: Hair pulling, also called trichotillomania, is an overwhelming addiction to pulling, twisting and plucking hair from the scalp or face. People who are addicted to pulling their hair typically have bald spots and may disguise their condition by wearing wigs or hats. The cause of hair pulling is not completely clear, but researchers believe genetic and environmental factors contribute to this painful addiction.
  7. Eating Dirt: Eating dirt, also referred to as geophagy, may be common among some cultures and species, but it’s also considered a form of pica disorder. Even if reports say that eating some dirt can be good for you, excessive consumption can be very unhealthy. Dirt eaters have a high risk for parasitic infections and poisoning if the soil is contaminated with industrial and human pollutants.
  8. Eating Toilet Paper: Toilet paper is another common non-food item consumed by people with pica disorder. Even though toilet paper may seem harmless because we use it on our skin every day, it can contain trace contaminants and chemicals from the manufacturing process. Not only is it unsafe to ingest these chemicals, but toilet paper is not easily digested by the body.
  9. Eating Soap: Believe it or not, there are quite a few people who not only enjoy having a bar of soap in their mouths, but they like to eat it too. Eating soap is a form of pica disorder that can have some serious health consequences. The toxic chemicals in soap can cause digestive problems, metabolic changes and affect the blood stream.
  10. Eating Laundry Detergent: Eating laundry detergent is a form of pica disorder, in which the consumer retains no nutritional value from the product. This addiction poses a serious danger to one’s health when consumed in excess. Laundry detergent is full of toxic ingredients, such as phosphates, chlorine bleach, corrosive acids and fillers that can make you sick to your stomach and cause several other health complications.
  11. Online Shopping: Online shopping addicts will spend a great deal of time and money shopping online for things they don’t need and will never use. This compulsive need to buy is similar to other kinds of shopping addictions, but online shoppers can do it anywhere, anytime. Online shopping addicts often struggle with finances, relationships and work productivity.
  12. Thumb Sucking: Thumb sucking is an addiction shared by children and adults alike. There are many reasons why people suck their thumbs during adulthood, such as anxiety and security. Aside from public humiliation and embarrassment, adults who are addicted to sucking their thumb might experience dental problems, social isolation and shame.
  13. Online Gambling: Online gambling addiction is a serious problem that can cause you and your loved ones a great deal of pain. Online gambling addicts spend countless hours and inconceivable amounts of money gambling every day. They often experience problems in their relationships, finances and work performance.
  14. Bodybuilding: Bodybuilding is something that can start out as normal and healthy, but can become very addictive in no time. Extreme bodybuilding can lead to many unhealthy practices, such as steroid usage. The obsession with being as muscular and strong as possible puts serious strain on one’s body and heart and can lead to disordered eating, as well.
  15. Chat Room Addiction: Visiting online chat rooms may seem like an innocent activity, but it has proven to be quite addictive for some. Chat room addicts spend a great deal of time on the computer visiting chat rooms and talking to friends or complete strangers. Some symptoms of a chat room addict include social isolation, irritability and anxiety when not on the computer, depression and problems at work.
  16. Romantic Rejection: Believe it or not, romantic rejection is something that people can become addicted to. People who constantly experience romantic rejection may actually become addicted to the pain and distress they feel afterward. This is an unhealthy addiction that could lead to further emotional and mental health problems.
  17. Tattoos: For many people, tattoos are like potato chips — you can never have just one. However, there comes a point where getting tattoos can become a serious addiction. Tattoo addicts may be obsessed with the pain of the needle and the adrenaline response, as well as the attention they get from having tons of tattoos. The more tattoos a person gets the greater their chances are for having allergic reactions, skin infections and contracting blood-borne diseases.
  18. Facebook: Even though it isn’t an actual medical diagnosis, Facebook addiction is a real concern. Facebook addicts are so enamored with social networking that they’ve dissociated themselves with the real world. Facebook addicts are always signed on and constantly updating their statuses or looking at others’ profiles. They may have trouble being productive at work and keeping their relationships intact.
  19. Text Messaging: Text messaging may be the next dangerous addiction affecting today’s youth and adults. Text messaging addicts are obsessed with sending message after message and may prefer shorthand messages over direct communication, which can drastically impair social skills. An addict’s impulsivity to send a message also increases their chances of being involved in a motor vehicle accident.
  20. Piercings: Piercings, much like tattoos, can be very addictive. Whether it’s the pain of piercing the skin or the attention it draws, people can become addicted to piercings in an unhealthy way. There are some serious risks involved with excessive piercing, such as bacterial infections, allergic reactions, blood-borne diseases and damage to nerves.
  21. Eating Sugar: Sugar addiction is not just an excuse to eat tons of candy – it’s a real problem. Sugar addicts consume foods and drinks that contain large quantities of sugar, specifically white refined sugar. This unhealthy diet can lead to many health problems, including diabetes, pancreatic problems, bowel diseases, obesity and dental issues.
  22. Computer Addiction: In today’s day and age, computer addiction is a real and concerning problem. Computer addicts spend hours upon hours on the computer doing a number of activities that aren’t work-related. The need to be on the computer at all times can cause serious problems in one’s relationships, work performance and overall well-being.
  23. Eating Paint Chips: Eating paint chips is a common form of pica disorder that is often seen during childhood. Ingesting paint chips is very dangerous to one’s health and can lead to lead poisoning. Lead poising in children can lead to irreversible brain damage and slow physical and mental development. In adults, lead poisoning can cause nerve damage, poor muscle coordination and reproductive problems.
  24. Eating Household Cleansers: Eating household cleansers is a form of pica disorder that is more common than you may think. This bizarre eating habit gives addicts a sense of happiness and fulfillment, but also comes with a slew of health problems. Household cleansers contain several toxic chemicals that are dangerous to ingest and can cause gastrointestinal issues and poisoning in large amounts.
  25. Life-Sized Love Dolls: It may sound ludicrous, but there is a large group of individuals who are addicted to life-sized love dolls. These dolls don’t just provide sexual partnership; they also offer companionship and acceptance to these lonely individuals. People who are addicted to love dolls are often socially isolated and disconnected with the real world.

Special contributor:  Celina Jacobson

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