Author Topic: Please Respond  (Read 5079 times)

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Offline Mikehoncho

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Please Respond
« on: December 13, 2011, 01:18:05 PM »
Hello. I am a current student at BMYS and am interested in opening a line of communication with my predecessors here.
Is this subforum still active?
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Offline psy

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2011, 01:39:01 PM »
Quote from: "Mikehoncho"
Hello. I am a current student at BMYS and am interested in opening a line of communication with my predecessors here.
Is this subforum still active?
Somewhat.  A few lurk around.  So what's your story?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
Benchmark Young Adult School - bad place [archive.org link]
Sue Scheff Truth - Blog on Sue Scheff
"Our services are free; we do not make a profit. Parents of troubled teens ourselves, PURE strives to create a safe haven of truth and reality." - Sue Scheff - August 13th, 2007 (fukkin surreal)

Offline Mikehoncho

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2011, 12:59:51 PM »
Since christmas break is fast approaching I have given the user name and password for this account to various other students. We will communicate via this forum.
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Offline cmack

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2011, 03:28:18 PM »
Welcome to fornits.

You have access to computers and the internet at Benchmark?

How long have you been there? What do you think of the program?
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Offline Mikehoncho

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2011, 10:09:23 PM »
I'm an upper level student and have access to computers at various libraries. In my opinion the program itself is fundamentally flawed in its take on rehabilitation. Instead of focusing on getting rid of destructive traits in a person and keeping the positive traits intact, they feel it necessary to "break down" students and rebuild them into some idealistic automaton. Needless to say, the results of this method are often destructive and a large number of students go AWOL  and/or are suspended before completing the program. So to answer your question, I don't enjoy it here and yearn for my graduation date to arrive.
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Offline cmack

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2011, 11:07:36 PM »
Quote from: "Mikehoncho"
I'm an upper level student and have access to computers at various libraries. In my opinion the program itself is fundamentally flawed in its take on rehabilitation. Instead of focusing on getting rid of destructive traits in a person and keeping the positive traits intact, they feel it necessary to "break down" students and rebuild them into some idealistic automaton. Needless to say, the results of this method are often destructive and a large number of students go AWOL  and/or are suspended before completing the program. So to answer your question, I don't enjoy it here and yearn for my graduation date to arrive.

I'm glad you are still you. How long before you graduate? Has the program been of any benefit to you at all? How many students are there now? I understand that enrollment is down over what it was several years ago. What are your plans for the future?
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Offline Mikehoncho

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2011, 01:40:23 PM »
Admittedly, My relationship with my parents has strengthened since coming to Benchmark.
After I finish at Benchmark I hope to transfer to a 4 year university.
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Offline cmack

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2011, 01:52:24 PM »
Quote from: "Mikehoncho"
Admittedly, My relationship with my parents has strengthened since coming to Benchmark.
After I finish at Benchmark I hope to transfer to a 4 year university.

I'm glad your relationship w/ your parents has improved and I wish you well w/ your Uni plans. Since you're a upper level student I assume that means you'll be graduating soon. I hope your posting here doesn't get you in any trouble.
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Offline T.O.

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2011, 05:56:45 PM »
Glad you have access! I'd repeat the comment that you should be careful. Your situation seems similar to mine--I was at benchmark a number of years ago. I actually graduated high school at Redlands Adult School and transferred to a 4-year university. I have since graduated (with honors), lived overseas, completed a Masters degree and am working on my PhD. It is possible, and it sounds like you are going in a really positive direction. Recently I accidentally ran into a girl I was at Benchmark with in Canada, where she was working on her M.A. and it is wonderful to see her happy.  

Benchmark is awful. It is so destructive--if it is a 'benchmark' of anything, it may be a benchmark of how bad things can be. But I have been amazed at how we managed to survive, and survive well.

Please let me know if there is anything we can help you with, at least while you have access. If you are taking college classes there, is it at Redlands or San Bernadino?

Btw, a bit of practical advice? Before you leave Benchmark, make sure that you get copies of your medical and psychiatric records. This has proved very difficult for me: on request from a respected therapist, they only provided the documents that *I* filled out upon admission--nothing concerning medication.
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Offline Xelebes

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2011, 06:01:10 PM »
I wonder if they have any documentation on the medication they dispense to patients/students.
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Offline T.O.

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2011, 06:07:00 PM »
Quote from: "Xelebes"
I wonder if they have any documentation on the medication they dispense to patients/students.
I would love if anyone had any advice for how to get it out of them? :-)
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Offline cmack

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2011, 06:51:51 PM »
Quote from: "T.O."
Glad you have access! I'd repeat the comment that you should be careful. Your situation seems similar to mine--I was at benchmark a number of years ago. I actually graduated high school at Redlands Adult School and transferred to a 4-year university. I have since graduated (with honors), lived overseas, completed a Masters degree and am working on my PhD. It is possible, and it sounds like you are going in a really positive direction. Recently I accidentally ran into a girl I was at Benchmark with in Canada, where she was working on her M.A. and it is wonderful to see her happy.  

Benchmark is awful. It is so destructive--if it is a 'benchmark' of anything, it may be a benchmark of how bad things can be. But I have been amazed at how we managed to survive, and survive well.

Please let me know if there is anything we can help you with, at least while you have access. If you are taking college classes there, is it at Redlands or San Bernadino?

Btw, a bit of practical advice? Before you leave Benchmark, make sure that you get copies of your medical and psychiatric records. This has proved very difficult for me: on request from a respected therapist, they only provided the documents that *I* filled out upon admission--nothing concerning medication.

Welcome to fornits and thanks for posting.

Would you mind explaining a little about how you ended up at Benchmark? I assume you were an adult when you went there so technically it was your decision, but were you pressured by parents or someone else. Was the program fairly described to you beforehand or did they misrepresent themselves? I've read psy's account of his experience there and understand how they can drive a wedge between parents and child after they are in the program. Were there any warning signs beforehand that the program wasn't what it made itself out to be?

And congratulations on your educational attainment. What's your PhD in?
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Offline cmack

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2011, 06:53:54 PM »
Quote from: "T.O."
Quote from: "Xelebes"
I wonder if they have any documentation on the medication they dispense to patients/students.
I would love if anyone had any advice for how to get it out of them? :-)

psy might have some suggestions. If he doesn't post here soon you might try sending him a private message or email.
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Offline Mikehoncho

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2011, 11:29:05 PM »
Quote
I wonder if they have any documentation on the medication they dispense to patients/students.

Yes they do. They have a sheet we have to sign before they dispense our meds with a full list of all the medications dispensed.
I'm sure obtaining a copy with my personal meds on it wouldn't be hard to obtain.


I do have to be very careful when I post on here. Maintaining my anonymity on here is of utmost importance. Im not overly worried though.

I've gone through my rebellious phase already. I attempted to start a student union and set up a food bank for AWOL students and was almost kicked out myself along with 12 other kids. Since then I have stayed under the radar and expect to graduate in may.
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Offline T.O.

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Re: Please Respond
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2011, 04:03:25 AM »
Quote from: "cmack"
Quote from: "T.O."
Glad you have access! I'd repeat the comment that you should be careful. Your situation seems similar to mine--I was at benchmark a number of years ago. I actually graduated high school at Redlands Adult School and transferred to a 4-year university. I have since graduated (with honors), lived overseas, completed a Masters degree and am working on my PhD. It is possible, and it sounds like you are going in a really positive direction. Recently I accidentally ran into a girl I was at Benchmark with in Canada, where she was working on her M.A. and it is wonderful to see her happy.  

Benchmark is awful. It is so destructive--if it is a 'benchmark' of anything, it may be a benchmark of how bad things can be. But I have been amazed at how we managed to survive, and survive well.

Please let me know if there is anything we can help you with, at least while you have access. If you are taking college classes there, is it at Redlands or San Bernadino?

Btw, a bit of practical advice? Before you leave Benchmark, make sure that you get copies of your medical and psychiatric records. This has proved very difficult for me: on request from a respected therapist, they only provided the documents that *I* filled out upon admission--nothing concerning medication.

Welcome to fornits and thanks for posting.

Would you mind explaining a little about how you ended up at Benchmark? I assume you were an adult when you went there so technically it was your decision, but were you pressured by parents or someone else. Was the program fairly described to you beforehand or did they misrepresent themselves? I've read psy's account of his experience there and understand how they can drive a wedge between parents and child after they are in the program. Were there any warning signs beforehand that the program wasn't what it made itself out to be?

And congratulations on your educational attainment. What's your PhD in?

Oy. I think I was in maybe a week or two before my 18th (they used to allow that, I don't know if they do now) but I was also straight out of SUWS--if you are familiar with that one, I was in the high mountains in Idaho from mid-January until mid-February-- and I had been 51/50d before that. I was already pretty discombobulated and disoriented from those experiences, and I was already being over-medicated.  All I knew was that I wanted the chance to keep going to school (I was not allowed back to my old high school), and Benchmark was supposed to be place were I could do that. I basically said ok because a) I was out in California with a suitcase and nothing else, and I'm from Boston, and b) I could finish school and start college courses. There weren't really any warning signs--I was incredibly lucky that my mother refused, in front of me, to sign the contract saying she would have no contact, but then she flew back to Boston and we had no money (for example, for her to get me home)...my Dad payed for the program (an epically hostile divorce story there), and he was all on board. Basically, me and my mom had no resources, and as far as my Dad was concerned it was this or nothing if I wanted to finish high school. It has alienated us for years, and I have only begun to be able to broach with him the depths of the horrible things that happened there and the degree to which I am still dealing with damage caused by Benchmark. I think when parents really love you, it is VERY hard for them to admit that they may have made a VERY BAD decision.

Interestingly enough, I forced myself to start talking to him about it when he started bringing up the 'troubled teen' daughter of a neighbor, mostly because I was TERRIFIED that he would recommend to the parents that they send her to Benchmark--I had to break my silence, because I knew I couldn't bear that responsibility.

I like to think that someday, when I am at UCLA or UC Berkeley delivering a paper, that I will be able go back and confront that place calmly, quietly, and with strength, but I can't do that yet--the very thought of the arrogance with which the majority of the staff went about damaging incredibly vulnerable young people still has the power to make me boil over.

And thank you! I am working on a PhD (Religious Studies) in the relationship between law and imagination in medieval and modern Jewish and Islamic philosophy and religious thought.
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