Author Topic: Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent  (Read 7129 times)

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Offline Antigen

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2006, 09:28:00 PM »
There's a good bit of back material at http://HelpAtAnyCost.com/writings.php

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Offline Antigen

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2006, 09:41:00 PM »
I just sent a copy of it to Dr. Mel Riddile w/ the gift note "I dare you to read this book. Bet you won't. I don't think you've got the guts. Do you?"

We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark.  The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.  
--Plato

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Offline Anonymous

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2006, 11:01:00 PM »
Quote
On 2006-02-03 18:41:00, Eudora wrote:

"I just sent a copy of it to Dr. Mel Riddile w/ the gift note "I dare you to read this book. Bet you won't. I don't think you've got the guts. Do you?"

We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark.  The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.  
--Plato


"


Nice move!  :tup:  :lol:
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Offline Antigen

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2006, 01:14:00 AM »
Here, you can do the same. Here are my Amazon Wish Lists

Who else deserves a copy of this book and why?

None of Nature's landscapes are ugly so long as they are wild.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2006, 05:36:00 AM »
Have anybody tried this site : http://www.troubledteensinfo.com ? Let me know .
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Offline Anonymous

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2006, 03:17:00 PM »
Quote
On 2006-03-04 02:36:00, Anonymous wrote:

"Have anybody tried this site : http://www.troubledteensinfo.com ? Let me know ."


What is the purpose of this website? And who is John McCann (contact person)?

John McCann    
Webmanager

West Hollywood  
California  
United States of America  
90069
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Offline Anonymous

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2006, 07:21:00 PM »
They're definitely connected with WWASP. Scroll all the way down to the bottom, click on "resources", then click on "Teen Help Options" and voila, WWASP!

Their purpose? To help parents find places to send their troubled teens, of course. Never mind that most of those parents could do a find job by improving their parenting skills and getting some local help. Nope, the idea is to turn your kid over to someone else. Give them full control. Stranges? That's OK, just trust them. They can make your kid whole. Right? Wrong!

Scroll on the left side of the page to "Boarding School Directory", then click on
Troubled Teen", the top one - WWASP, then click on the 2nd one, WWASP, the next one is for Sorenson Ranch. The one below that is probably WWASP too, just a hunch. Then last one is a pregnancy site telling girls they are courageous for giving their babies up for adoption. I wonder just what happens when these babies are given up. I wonder who gets $ for these babies, and I wonder how many girls are convinced to give up their babies who otherwise might have wanted to raise them themselves. Just something to wonder about ... WWASP runs such a program in Southern Utah. New Beginnings.

The new thing now is "Positive Peer Culture". Many programs are using that instead of "Behavior Modification". And that's because Behavior Modification has gotten a bad rap. It will be interesting to see if Positive Peer Culture will mirror behavior modifcation. Same book different cover, as with eveything else in this industry.

I just noticed this site promotes Provo Canyon School. Now, that's damn scary. Provo Canyon is known as one of the most abusive. Just do a search on this site and you'll find out quickly what has happened in that place. Pretty scary.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2006, 07:23:00 PM »
Quote: Ooops .. meant to say "... parents could do a "fine" job ..."
Their purpose? To help parents find places to send their troubled teens, of course. Never mind that most of those parents could do a find job by improving their parenting skills and getting some local help. Nope, the idea is to turn your kid over to someone else. Give them full control. Stranges? That's OK, just trust them. They can make your kid whole. Right? Wrong!
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Offline Anonymous

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #23 on: March 04, 2006, 07:29:00 PM »
Registration Service Provided By: Registerfly.com
Contact: http://www.registerfly.com

Domain name: troubledteensinfo.com

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Walpole, MD 02081-4020
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Technical Contact:

Anthony Anthony (65eb5897-e059-4f3f-9554-5a816251a5c1@whois-services.com


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Version 6.3 4/3/2002
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2006, 07:35:00 PM »
Anyone consider advertising their website on this site? All the "pro" programmers are doing it, what about the "anti" programmers joining in. I wonder how much it costs??? Might be worth starting up a fund and posting all the pertinent websites so parents could see the other side of the story.

And by the way ... if this site were so concerned about troubled teens, then why are they not putting up warnings about programs in the industry? Why are they not warning against places that restrain kids? About programs that have been proven abusive?

It's all about the same thing it's always been about - $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

 ::bangin::  ::puke::
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Offline Antigen

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #25 on: March 05, 2006, 01:34:00 AM »
Quote
On 2006-03-04 16:21:00, Anonymous wrote:

It will be interesting to see if Positive Peer Culture will mirror behavior modification. Same book different cover, as with everything else in this industry.


No, that would be retro and redundant, not all that interesting. Positive Peer Pressure goes all the way back to the Seed, if not further. Reacculturation used to be one of Virgil Newton's favorite words. It's just Jabberwocky

I swear by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #26 on: March 05, 2006, 02:43:00 PM »
Didn't know that (it went back to the Seed days) - learn something new every day!
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Offline Anonymous

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« Reply #27 on: March 05, 2006, 03:04:00 PM »
Quote
On 2006-03-04 16:21:00, Anonymous wrote:

"They're definitely connected with WWASP. Scroll all the way down to the bottom, click on "resources", then click on "Teen Help Options" and voila, WWASP!



Their purpose? To help parents find places to send their troubled teens, of course. Never mind that most of those parents could do a find job by improving their parenting skills and getting some local help. Nope, the idea is to turn your kid over to someone else. Give them full control. Stranges? That's OK, just trust them. They can make your kid whole. Right? Wrong!



Scroll on the left side of the page to "Boarding School Directory", then click on

Troubled Teen", the top one - WWASP, then click on the 2nd one, WWASP, the next one is for Sorenson Ranch. The one below that is probably WWASP too, just a hunch. Then last one is a pregnancy site telling girls they are courageous for giving their babies up for adoption. I wonder just what happens when these babies are given up. I wonder who gets $ for these babies, and I wonder how many girls are convinced to give up their babies who otherwise might have wanted to raise them themselves. Just something to wonder about ... WWASP runs such a program in Southern Utah. New Beginnings.



The new thing now is "Positive Peer Culture". Many programs are using that instead of "Behavior Modification". And that's because Behavior Modification has gotten a bad rap. It will be interesting to see if Positive Peer Culture will mirror behavior modifcation. Same book different cover, as with eveything else in this industry.



I just noticed this site promotes Provo Canyon School. Now, that's damn scary. Provo Canyon is known as one of the most abusive. Just do a search on this site and you'll find out quickly what has happened in that place. Pretty scary.



"


The babies are going to Mormons who will raise them to grow up and fornicate like rabbits to produce more Mormon babies who one day will start a teen help program.  

And the beat goes on.  

:smokin:

 :eek:
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Offline Antigen

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #28 on: March 19, 2006, 07:20:00 PM »
. . . may be the highest compliment.


Once at a social gathering, Gladstone said to Disraeli, "I predict, Sir, that you will die either by hanging or of some vile disease". Disraeli replied, "That all depends, sir, upon whether I embrace your principles or your mistress." --Benjamin Disraeli



Quote
From Strugglingteens.com

Books of Interest
HELP AT ANY COST
Book Reviews
HELP AT ANY COST: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parents and Hurts Kids
By: Maia Szalavitz
Riverhead Books, 2006
ISBN: 1594489106

Book Review By: Janyce Lastman LLB, Education Consultant
Mar 18, 2006, 11:55

Frankly, I?d rather you didn?t have to read this book, let alone buy it. However, it?s new, it?s sensational and it?s well packaged ? and bound to confuse more than a few readers. My hope is through this review, you can become familiar enough with it to allay the many misconceptions it reinforces. The subtitle How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parents and Hurts Kids quickly establishes its lack of objectivity. What is more difficult to establish is whether a hidden agenda or personal grudge might explain why Maja Szalavitz, an otherwise seemingly respectable journalist and senior fellow at the media watchdog group http://www.stats.org, felt compelled to produce such a one-sided, sensationalized piece.

Help At Any Cost is billed as a book that ?uncovers? cases of inexcusable abuse, neglect and malpractice within the teen help industry. In reality, the vast majority of the cases described occurred within the most poorly managed and disreputable residential teen help programs, some dating back more than 30 years. Sadly, the heartbreaking stories described are for the most part, factually correct, though fortunately most of the perpetrators have been driven out of business by bad press and vigorous litigation. The book also claims to ?expose? serious incidents even within model programs. In reality, the very few tragedies experienced thus far in otherwise exemplary programs have been due to inevitable human error, carelessness or simple bad luck. They have however served to remind us of the dangers of complacency; the resulting aftershocks caused many to review and revise their emergency procedures.

The cases Szalavitz discusses were reported in mainstream media along with Woodbury Reports, so you will encounter very few surprises in that regard. What is surprising however is the author?s utter dismissal of the troubled teen industry as a whole. She fails to acknowledge that the vast majority of programs and industry professionals are ethical, knowledgeable, compassionate, dedicated and successful at helping teens and families in times of turmoil and crisis. Her book devotes several chapters to the controversial chemical addiction programs of the 1960?s, 70?s and early 80?s: Synanon, SEED, Straight, KIDS, etc., that were designed for youth and adults. Most have imploded over time due to poorly managed growth, delusions of grandeur from their leadership and a tendency to attract fanatical, inflexible staff. While Ms. Szalavitz is properly horrified by some of their treatment techniques, she fails to notice that other now-controversial methods were actually in line with the community standards of the time.

The book has some technical and stylistic quirks. The sheer number of pages devoted to the older and controversial detox programs seems incongruous, especially given the target audience. Yet presuming she felt a need to recreate the development of the industry, why does she make only the briefest of references to key long-running programs which were foundation pillars of this industry: Anasazi, Aspen, Brown Schools and CEDU (surprisingly, she barely even mentions their recent corporate bankruptcy ? a missed opportunity if ever there was one), De Sisto, Elan, etc. Instead, she positions the WWASP programs as the primary ?model? from which most programs have spawned, which leads her down a very different path.

Of similar concern is the book?s heavy footnoting, which looks impressive especially to a less sophisticated reader. But beware: while some footnotes link correctly to primary resources, others represent third-party comments or anecdotes (hearsay or even gossip). Still others contain insufficient information to check the validity of the supposed source. However, I found the most troubling and offensive aspect of Help at Any Cost was the generalization that residential therapeutic programs for troubled teens were unnecessary, money grubbing, deliberately deceptive, and often physically and emotionally damaging to those they purport to help.

Ms. Szalavitz?s argument runs roughly as follows (subtitles are my own):

Blame it on Reagan, Bush and George W., etc.
Society?s preoccupation with the safety and well-being of its youth around drugs, alcohol, promiscuity and acting out is the product of self-serving manipulation by far-right elements in the Republican party in concert with reactionary, back-to-basics Bible-waving lobby groups.

A Boot Camp by any other name?would probably just be a cult
Ms. Szalavitz appears unaware of the distinctions between behavior modification-based placements, and the wide range of therapeutic and treatment settings that are based on family systems, natural consequences and positive peer culture. In her eyes, teen help programs are either all ?boot camps? of the blame and shame variety, or cult-like centers practicing the most subversive mind-control techniques perfected by the North Koreans (her words, not mine).

Bye for now?see you in a few years
She seems completely oblivious to the frequency and extent of the contact required and often elaborately organized between family members and teens many in such programs.

Dumb and Dumber
The author says today?s families are led by self-absorbed, disempowered, harried adults who are unable and unwilling to work at being parents. Fed on a steady diet of alarmist messages from those in Premise 1, they mistake normal teenage experimentation and differentiation (necessary for healthy maturation and separation) for dangerous behavior or symptoms of clinical or pathological concern.

Apparently, Ms. Szalavitz finds parents so unsophisticated, lazy and easily intimidated that, despite the deeply ingrained fear she outlined above of exposing one?s children to outside influences, they instantly transfer custody of their (pain-in-the-behind but otherwise normal) teens to virtual strangers in far corners of the continent without a second thought. Then the very same parents willingly pay what she considers obscene fees for these ?unnecessary services? without question. Again, a rather unlikely scenario.

Never mind the testing, just sign ?em up!
She claims residential therapeutic programs rely on scare mongering as their primary marketing tactic. She says admissions staff, who are only expected to generate revenue, must press for immediate enrollment regardless of the relative severity of behaviors or presenting symptoms. Parents are told with dramatic flourish that their child will die, end up on the street or become irreparably alienated from family, school and community in short order without their particular residential program. She concludes all this despite never apparently placing even one test inquiry call to a program herself. Additionally, she seems unaware of the admissions protocol that requires separate clinical, educational and financial approvals.

If you can?t fool all of the people all of the time, go for most of the people?
Since her belief is that residential therapeutic teen placement is usually unwarranted, any ?progress? participants and families claim to have made must be either wishful thinking or a con job by program staff. Dissatisfied families see no progress because they are the realists who resisted brainwashing. With this premise, she attempts to discredit all parent testimonials and participant self-reports in one fell swoop. She also fails to acknowledge the many reasons for premature withdrawal from programs and resulting dissatisfaction.

We?re all part of the big, bad machine?
Ms. Szalatiz similarly dismisses educational consultants, escorts and program therapists as potential resources. While she grudgingly acknowledges that Educational Consultants could be useful given their exposure to a large number of programs, we are too expensive (compared to what?), and states there is no way to identify those who are knowledgeable, honorable and not operating on a kickback for referral system. Her view on teen escorts is no better. She calls them hired bullies who get non-compliant teens from home to program by ripping them from their beds terrified and disoriented without benefit of explanation from family. She says they use physical and chemical restraints as a matter of course rather than last resort.

As for the therapists employed within residential programs, this author says they are either poorly trained, casually supervised or practice a dangerous mix of trendy psychobabble without benefit of short- or long-term treatment planning. Instead Ms. Szalavitz then touts the virtues of weekly outpatient treatment on a one-hour basis (though never if the teen doesn?t want to go, of course).

While there are families, programs, escorts, therapists (and even a few consultants!) who fit the above descriptions ? they are neither the majority nor the norm. In reality, the vast majority of families in crisis have, as one father so aptly put it, ?already been to Hell and are not quite back yet in search of solutions.? Teens that are out of control and terrorizing their families are self-medicating or self-harming with substances rather than just partying or having a good time. They are acting out aggressively or acting ?in? internally?not experimenting with new identities and feelings. They may be exposing themselves to high-risk sexual activity and exploitation repeatedly, rather than healthily exploring their newfound sexual identity. Some are committing anti-social or full-scale criminal activities that without doubt go far beyond rebelling against authority. In sum, these are not ordinary children with typical teenage problems.

These teens, their families, and those who work to help them get back on track deserve our support, understanding and compassion, rather than pity, scorn and derision. Fear-mongering and reactionary narrow-mindedness are what Ms. Szalavitz supposedly opposes and tries to expose. Ironically, her book is guilty of the very same charge. She has exploited every parent's worst nightmare of residential treatment gone wrong, without even acknowledging the mainstream reality that solid, reliable and effective help is available, let alone how to access it.

Had Ms. Szalavitz truly wanted to damage those questionable programs while helping struggling teens and families, she would have included user-friendly information giving parents the tools and supports to identify good programs, evaluate the match with their particular child and monitor progress thereafter. Instead, her Appendix For Parents of Troubled Teens appears to be a hasty add-on, perhaps an editor?s attempt to show some balance ? but contains very little of practical use. Her brief nod to those so foolhardy as to pursue residential treatment despite her dire warnings begins with, ?if a child is so ill as to require hospitalization or any form of residential care...? Ten basic questions and the answers she believes parents must receive follow. The section concludes with the caveat, ?even if you ask all the right questions and get all the right answers, this cannot guarantee that you have found a good program?as program providers (commonly) mislead parents about their services, complaint procedures and treatment philosophies.? Most reassuring.

So if not residential treatment, what options does she suggest? She ends her book with a reading and research list, and a few real gems that reflect her level of understanding of the issues at hand. For instance, she says, instead of sending these kids away, why can?t we just talk to them? With enough love, understanding and open communication, surely these conflicts would simply pass and all parties would emerge healthier and wiser form the experience. She concedes that the most troubled of teens might benefit from a mainstream (not at-risk) Outward Bound course ? but only if they choose to go voluntarily. Reading this suggestion, one mother scoffed, ?I couldn?t get my (addicted and oppositional) daughter to do gym class since 6th grade, or see a dentist or doctor for the last 3 years. How does this lady think I would sell her on a course filled with perky, health-conscious outdoor enthusiasts ? and why would they want her? Her sole focus would be to stay high, steal from the others and self-mutilate while they?re busy experiencing nature!" Ms. Szalavitz?s very last suggestion is perhaps the most amusing. Families might duplicate the major breakthroughs made in wilderness programs themselves she says, simply by taking a good old-fashioned family camping trip, followed by a few volunteer excursions to the food bank. Now why haven?t we ever thought of that!!??

Copyright 2005 by Woodbury Reports, Inc.


 
Comment: I've only read as far as the first couple of paragraphs and thought ya'll might be interested. Right off the bat, Lastman begs the question, "What about the rest of the industry?" Well, I think that's a good and fair question which deserves a thoughtful answer.

I've read a good many extremely good descriptions of various other companies in the troubled parent industry scattered around these forums. But picking them out is a bit tough. Would some of you guys please post links to your own telling or to articles which you've found particularly good?

If there is a God, he is a malign thug.
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Offline Deborah

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Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parent
« Reply #29 on: April 16, 2006, 01:51:00 AM »
Lastman has a review at Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/custom ... 85-8598210

Similar but longer, I think.
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gt;>>>>>>>>>>>>>><<<<<<<<<<<<<<
Hidden Lake Academy, after operating 12 years unlicensed will now be monitored by the state. Access information on the Federal Class Action lawsuit against HLA here: http://www.fornits.com/wwf/viewtopic.php?t=17700