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1
The Troubled Teen Industry / Programs and Politics: a connection?
« on: June 01, 2013, 09:40:47 AM »
Quote from: "blombrowski"
The industry takes a strictly capitalist, individualist, parents' rights model of treatment.
Sorry, what there?  Parents' rights I grant you but capitalism is irrelevant and it seems to me a viewpoint that respects the individual would very much be in opposition to the industry.  I'm not trying to jump on you but do keep in mind that bringing politics into an argument unnecessarily alienates half your audience (and likely more than half of those who count in this case).

2
Link here.

It mentions Josh Shipp, Aspen Education, Swift River Academy, and others.

Full text here minus videos and photos for posterity (emphasis added):

Quote
AMERICAN TEENS ARE BEING TRAPPED IN ABUSIVE 'DRUG REHAB CENTRES'
By Matt Shea

If you like Army Wives, Preachers’ Daughters, Dance Moms or any other TV show attempting to create a taxonomy of women based on the professions of their husbands, fathers and children, then you may well have caught an episode of Teen Trouble. It’s a reality TV show on the US Lifetime network where a guy named Josh Shipp sends “at-risk teens” to "alternative rehab centres", where they’re forced to endure emotional and physical abuse before being allowed to rejoin society.  

Shipp is your classic Jerry Springer brand of therapist – no real qualifications, a huge ego and a penchant for money and entertaining TV over science and genuine psychology. “I’m a teen behaviour specialist,” he says in the intro. “My approach is gritty, gutsy and in your face.”

But the show is a lot grittier than you might expect from that typical teleprompter spiel. The unregulated "troubled teen" industry is able to persist despite numerous allegations of physical and sexual abuse, torture and death at various institutions, and Shipp is exploiting that same system for monetary gain. Even when they aren’t abusive and/or deadly, the pseudoscientific practices used at “tough love boarding schools” have often proven to be ineffective and can lead to PTSD, anxiety, depression and drug addiction. Maia Szalavitz, author of Help at Any Cost: How the Troubled-Teen Industry Cons Parents and Hurts Kids, told me about some of the horror stories her own research uncovered.

“The classic list is food deprivation, sleep deprivation, public humiliation, beatings and denial of access to the bathroom to the point where you wet or soil yourself. But I’m also constantly hearing stories of people being forced to re-enact various traumas, like being raped,” she told me.

Szalavitz continued, "At Mount Bachelor Academy,

an Aspen facility

Quote
an investigation found bed sheets that had been used during re-enactments, and one of them had, ‘I am the yes girl, spray your cum on my tits,’ written on it. Let’s be real: this is not therapy.”

The methods used at these facilities are arguably traceable to an anti-drug cult in the 60s called the Church of Synanon. Their method was to abduct addicts and then “rehabilitate” them through beatings and humiliation. “I found that virtually all of the programmes that exist today using the harshest tactics were either founded by former Synanon members or sent people to Synanon to learn the treatment,” Szalavitz told me.

Former patients have been airing their stories on Reddit and other websites, so I contacted a few of them to find out more. It soon became clear that today’s residential teen treatment centres still have all the trappings of a cult.

One night, Nick Quinn was roused from sleep at his home and taken to Aspen Education’s Outback programme in Utah (the same programme Josh Shipp sent Jacob to in episode two of Teen Trouble) because his parents caught him smoking weed.

“At 4.30AM, I was woken up by two strangers holding handcuffs. They took my wallet and phone and told me that if I didn’t want to go easily they would make it hard for me. I thought I was being kidnapped. Next thing I know, I’m in a big white truck on my way to the airport,” he told me.

Once he arrived, Nick was given new clothes and survival gear, tied up and shipped into the wilderness, where he would remain for eight weeks. His boots were taken away at night to prevent him from escaping on the freezing cold ground. All of which seems a little aggressive for smoking a bit of weed.

After his ordeal, Nick was sent to another Aspen institute – the Swift River Academy in Massachusetts – where he was kept for seven months. “I was lucky my parents pulled me out. You could just tell they wanted the kids to be there as long as possible. They were milking it; my parents spent around $150,000 (£98,407).”

At Swift River, Nick endured the same kind of “therapy” I’d heard about from every other young victim, and which numerous academics had told me can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). According to Szalavitz, the goal is to break the child down psychologically and brainwash them: “The reasons these tactics sound similar to enhanced interrogation techniques, AKA torture, is because they're the ways you can break people and leave minimal marks.”

Now, years later, Nick has developed an anxiety disorder, experiences recurring nightmares from his time in “therapy” and still smokes weed. Understandably, his parents regret sending him there as it seems to have caused more damage than it prevented – something that appears to be a recurring theme with victims of troubled teen camps.

"Pretty much all the kids who I’m in touch with [from the camps] have dropped out of school," Nick told me. "Most get re-addicted to drugs. When you get out, you have all this freedom and you don’t know what to do with it. You lose control, you know?”

Aria Leonard, who was sent to the Monarch School in Montana seven years ago, had similar experiences. Aria told me her mother sent her there because she “disliked the friends she was making because they were ‘different’ – black, gay, etc.” After a pricey $2,000 (£1,312) visit to an “educational consultant”, Aria was diagnosed as depressed, as a drug addict and told by her parents she’d be going to “boarding school”.

Aria first realised it was no ordinary boarding school when her belongings were taken and she was strip-searched on entry.

“Right after that I was taken directly to a group session. People were talking about drugs, sex and alcohol, then everyone started screaming and crying. I was really confused and started to wonder if there had been some sort of mistake. I was then asked what drugs I'd done to be put there, and – despite my insistence that I'd never done drugs, was a virgin and wasn’t violent – they didn't believe me.”

Aria was forced to undertake pointless physical labour, like cutting down huge trees and dragging them along the ground for half an hour, as well as being told to sit opposite a wall at night and continuously write stuff like, "I am a slut" and "I'm not good enough".

Like most victims of the troubled teen industry, Aria was forced to divulge “disclosures” – a form of ludicrously invasive confessional. “You had to write about everything bad you'd ever done, with an emphasis on ‘sexual disclosures’. I had very little experience in sexual anything, but they wouldn’t believe me, so in the end I just made it up,” she said.

Aria was also put through the same emotional breaking-down sessions inflicted on Nick. During procedures known as “insights”, teens were denied bathroom access, food and sleep for three to five days. They would also be made to perform role-playing exercises that ended in them acting out their own death – exercises Shia likened to the kind of “therapy” seen in this bizarre video.

Aria remained in the centre for 18 months. Like Nick, she has since been diagnosed with anxiety and depression and continues to have nightmares about her experience.

Liz went to 39 residential treatment centres and describes being abused and raped multiple times. Rape claims are common in the industry, but – as the children are completely under staff's control for years – lawsuits rarely surface.

“The excessive use of punishment and humiliating procedures isn't only unhelpful, but also traumatising for young people," said Professor Robert Friedman, a child psychologist. "As is the practice of having strangers wake them in the middle of the night and transport them far away without any preparation.”

And it’s not just the trauma-inducing methodology that makes the industry questionable; it’s also the diagnosis. "What is a 'troubled teen'?" Szalavitz wonders. “The idea that we put kids with Asperger’s, heroin addictions, depression and extreme anxiety disorders in one programme with a rigid, regimented schedule and expect it to help all of those kids – how could that be?

“Americans have this idea that addiction and drug use is about complete hedonistic abandon, seeking extra pleasure and defying your parents. They missed the fact that the people who really tend to have problems with drugs are people in pain seeking relief. Their idea is that these people don’t have enough pain, so we need to give them more pain to fix them,” she said.

No matter the intention, these forms of therapy aren't only pointless and outdated, but cruel and damaging. Any emotional trauma that teenagers suffer at Aspen Education’s institutes must only be matched by the neglect they feel at being abandoned by their parents for an important part of their formative years.

While these practices might seem abhorrent, the troubled teen industry is huge, powerful and experienced in deflecting allegations. In 2002, Forbes magazine’s Erika Brown estimated its worth at $2 billion, and since then it's only been on the rise. The industry has managed to stick around in some incarnation since the 60s due to its powerful Republican and Christian roots. Many programmes can be traced back to Straight, Incorporated, Nancy Reagan and George Bush Sr's favourite anti-drug programme that was closed due to abuse lawsuits in the early 90s.

Here, I disagree.  The influences come from Synanon, est, LifeSpring, and whatever else worked.  There are facilities that are Christian and mormon, but in most cases the religious dogma had less to do with practices and more as a cover.  Also, few programs today are direct Straight decedents.  Most are spawn of CEDU, which in turn is a spawn of Synanon.  WWASP is a spawn of LifeSpring and other Utah facilities such as Provo Canyon.  Yeah republicans have also been in support of the industry, but I hate it when they bring politics into this.  Democrats would just as easily have supported places like CEDU clones.  Hell. I'm willing to bet Whooter votes democrat.

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Today, funding from Mitt Romney’s private equity firm Bain Capital (of which he has resigned as CEO, but continues to profit from) has allowed the industry to thrive. The biggest name in the business, Aspen Education, is owned by CRC Health Group, which was bought by Bain Capital in 2006 and is responsible for many of the institutes used on Shipp’s show. Since the takeover, Aspen has seen six deaths occur in its facilities, mainly due to neglect. Worryingly, the US Department of State advertises Aspen programmes for teens on their website.

Hardly known as a bastion of Republicans.

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I confronted Shipp about the issue, but he brushed it aside as an unfortunate change of staffing in a few of the programmes, rather than a powerful nationwide industry that’s rotten to the core. “Treatment facilities can change ownership, management and staffing quite regularly," Shipp told me. "Parents need to proceed with caution with any programme at all and be armed with the right questions to ask.”

Shipp also assured me that, “A family therapist chose the aftercare for each kid based on the situation they were going through.” But if there’s one reason that the industry has managed to survive other than money, it’s that there’s almost no supervision for psychological treatments in the USA, which is kind of at odds with Shipp's claims. As Szalavitz told me, “If I wanted to start a addiction rehab centre tomorrow where treatment just involves standing on your head for extended periods of time, then I could do just that.”

It’s not difficult for the industry to legitimise itself. Professor Friedman told me that “groups like Aspen are now trying to build an empirical case for their programmes by hiring evaluators to conduct supposedly independent studies that validate the effectiveness of the programmes. These studies aren't independent and are more of a marketing effort than a genuine evaluation.”

This kind of “therapy” comes from an older America: one which believes that society is subject to moral decay and that the solution is to force outliers to conform to Republican and Christian ideals of abstinence and hard work. It’s an America that puts its faith in the ecstatic emotional climaxes of TV evangelism and “tough love” over the tried scientific methods of modern psychology.

Again. Unnecessary and polarizing.  Christian dogma has nothing whatsoever to do with, for example, the human potential leanings of many program's workshops.  There is nothing in the Bible that even speaks to drug or alcohol0 prohibition at all.  According to the Bible, Jesus drank, and not just for ceremonial purposes.  His first miracle was to convert water to wine so people at a party could get drunker than they already were.  I'm not a fan of Christianity (or Islam, or any religion for that matter), but I hate it when journalists blame it for a paranoid, reactionary, prohibitionist culture that developed independently and only as of this past century worked it's way into mainstream Christianity, and only by blatantly ignoring things like Jesus's fondness for wine.

All this does is to convince Christians reading the article that it's just written by some atheist leftist with an unfair grudge against all things moral.  It undermines the core arguments which should otherwise be important to everybody regardless of faith or political persuasion.  Articles like this will only keep kids of OWS Democrats out of programs.

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Where we see experimentation and the pushing of boundaries, it sees sin and societal corruption that must be violently scared out of people. Normal teenagers are being told that they are wrong and worthless, then broken and abused with the goal of making them “born again” as upstanding adults. And all the while, their parents’ bank accounts are being emptied straight into the coffers of America’s richest men. (The recession has dampened the industry’s growth, but CRC Health lists the net revenue per child in outdoor programmes as $438.96 per day, and in residential programmes as $257.87 per day.)

And yet, while minor investigations have forced individual rehab centres to change staff, the industry continues to thrive. That's because these institutions use the same methods, have the same roots and are funded by the same people. Which begs the question: Why has there been no attempt at state regulation of treatment centres? Until there is, American kids are destined to continue suffering in these abusive institutions.

Follow Matt on Twitter: @Matt_A_Shea

3
The Troubled Teen Industry / Kids in Program Credible?
« on: November 20, 2010, 12:31:35 AM »
Quote from: "wwasprapedmymind"
The reason there are more graduates on anti-program sites is that they saw more.  Most graduates faked their way through the program because they realized they had no other way out.  When you've been lying to your parents for years, who are they going to believe?  You or the "responsible adults" holding you captive?  And when the captors have a $5000/month incentive to keep you, to what lengths will they go to keep you?
Especially when they already know you wont be believed.  You become the perfect victim, and your parents the perfect marks.

4
The Troubled Teen Industry / The Program - The Lies They Told Us
« on: November 05, 2010, 10:26:27 PM »
Quote from: "Whooter"
An example of a survivor’s story without the drama… i.e. Kidnappings, torture, brainwashing, starvation, beatings and attacks.  You will notice that the author included the ups and downs in his/her point of view, not just the negative points.  To me this is refreshing and makes the post very credible. Yet I noticed no one extended a welcome to this poster.  Could this be because he failed to say he was kidnapped and abused?

This is a story that I think parents would believe to be credible.  The author isnt seeking attention or trying to run down the program and seems to take responsibility for himself and his actions.

Link


Ok too many wrong points and whole lot of good points...I was in the AEG programs for 4 years almost...Yeah I didn't like them but it served me well...Now I wasn't there for Neil and Mary but I did hear stories from some people about their tyranny, but I do not believe they supported terrorists. Get a day job seriously! But from what I heard sometime ago, a girl had to take insulin shots on a daily basis and apparently Neil gave her Hep-C, because he really needed insulin once. SO she used it not knowing he used it, he didn't tell her and now she has it for the rest of her life. And yeah thats a real shit thing to do, but most the kids there refused to do anything about their behaviors, most kids brandished knives, I saw a kid break a part a plastic knife and swallow it. He also carved a girls initials in his own skin. And most of the kids that went had torn family values anyways. And most of them ran away because their parents were absolute monsters. It wasn't like summer camp I know that. We had kids come from Military Schools and they said those schools were more enjoyable than Cedars. To all you parents, yeah you might have different opinions on how Cedars treated your kids, but I went there from 04 to 06. Most of the staff was yeah very unqualified but they were nice as hell. And when I was there they never restrained people or "touched" them in any bad ways. The only reason why I think this is so, they wouldn't let the boys mingle with the girls, that was the only problem any of us had. I mean we still had ways to go around that but it wasn't all bad. Most kids that I saw come and go, faked being sick, faked breaking limbs, faked being attacked by other people, faked being real and faked being anything worth a damn. Oh yeah the other reason was the tuition was like 50 thousand dollars. If you can afford that then good luck to you, reason being all those kids were so damn spoiled that at the end of the day they just went crazy and went nuts, cuz they couldn't have their laptops, IPODS, or cell phones. I went to another AEG school b4 Cedars for a year and half with no technology, grow the hell up and do your work like the rest of us and stop complaining.



...
And how are we to know a program representative did not write that?  Or coerced in-program writing.  Or a brainwashed survivor?  Based on what they do to the kids to attain anything like the above result I should flat this as spam as it's clearly marketing, but marketing is an OK topic.  You want to talk marketing.

Do you have any idea the amount of bullshit I was sold about the program I was sent to?  They lied to me, they lied to my parents, they lied to make money for a sociopathic bitch who drives top of the line mercedes.  I was told I could use a computer for my documented writing disability. Nope.  They thought it was an addiction they could cure because of all their dogma they'd been fed so they treated a documented disability as if it was something trivial.  They made me write in notebooks.  To this day I still have to write very slowly or i'll mess up and string letters together.  It looks like chicken shit.  Point being it was not something they could cure and they tried to "cure" me of a disease I did not have.  And they brainwashed me.  That was the biggest lie of all.  Dogmatic horse shit.

And it's not just 12 step.  It's Scientology influenced (est) derivative workshops for both the parents and the kids full of totally bonkers thinking.  But they get your trust so much you start believing as they do.  They are nice to you and gain your trust and manipulate your emotions with guilt when you break one of their rules.  You start informing on others, not because you're a snitch, but because you believe the greater good is attained at the expense of individual liberty when you're saving people from themselves, and you truly believe you're helping others to follow their program and be saved!  And of course you're taught that if you'll leave the program they'll die...  And so they do.  They AWOL.  They stay, they end up on the streets when the parents are bankrupt.  They die.  They do not believe they can survive so they do not try.  Because they do not try they cannot succeed, and the prophecy of the program is proven true.  In this respect I believe the program sets people up for failure.  And they do it all with lies of one form or another.  And all for profit.  Which is not to say profit is bad, but i do believe that committing fraud to make it is.

Parents do not intervene because they are told that by doing so they are enabling them in their addiction (they see all problems as addictions.  It's AA gone fucking looney toons).  See.  That's where AA is less crazy.  Your garden variety stepcraft practitioners do not try and cure legitimate mental health problems with quackery.  They recognize certain things are disabilities or whatever and or they have the common sense of maybe "hey... let him use a computer for extended writing".  Or "maybe", don't try to convince him he's a drunk when he's only gotten really drunk once before the program, and that was the first time.  Now I have a beer maybe every other week or so.  But there was a time when I believed the lie and I would thank them for "saving my life".  I would lie for them and view it as a necessary thing to defend the program from those who would not understand the divine program truth.

Most of all I focused on their lie that I was not myself, that I was some insane character dreamed up to haunt me.  That I needed to reject my false me and replace it what they wanted me to be.  Problem what I removed wasn't a mask, it was my face, and what they stitched on was putrid and maggotted.  The identity they convinced me was at my core was a lie.  But I snapped out, by some freak accident while in the program and was silenced.  They called it an excess in "Negativity" which in programsprachen basically means "disagreeing with us" or "telling the truth".

As far as lies in the marketing go, they were all over the map.  I was told I could send letters to my Girlfriend at the time or talk to her on the phone.  Nope.  I was told Change would be optional, that I could advance as long as I followed their program, which they made to seem very objectively judged.  Turns out change was actually not very optional in the program, and you can't exactly opt out either because you don't realize exactly how they're changing you until it's too late.  You arrive thinking these kids must have done horrible things to get set back into the program but you learn.  The program is just there to raise your hopes and send you back a level, keeping you in a sort of limbo for as long as your parents can afford to pay.  Eventually they screw you over and you start to figure it out.  They you talk to others.  Then you figure out what's really going on.  Then you realize you're pretty much fucked.  And of course the program allows one or two to succeed so they can get a success story (proving it's possible to marks) and they threaten those who would dare speak the truth to keep their lie's reputation alive.  

I was told a field of land was supposed to be a volleyball field by the representative at my program.  They lied.  It was used as a punishment field where we would dig all day long in the hot desert sun.  They gave us water and all but it was very unsanitary considering the types of things that are dropped in sand (keep in mind not a nice area).  Broken glass, a dead cat, or at least part of one (second hand source).  Thankfully not any needles but I know for a fact they were discarded around the area because public trash pick-up was also used as a punishment (and it gained the program brownie points in the community).  Thankfully the physical punishment wasn't WWASP class but the mental was far probably a bit more severe (and that's second hand from a survivor who went to both).

Enough for today.  I'm going to continue this tomorrow or on sunday.  Let's you guys give some examples of your own.

Directions:  Survivors and Parents only thread (Whooter excluded...  you can start other threads, Whooter, but no thread flooding.).  I want this thread to document the lies programs have told people over the years, in marketing and in the program itself.  I want the lie that is the program to be exposed.  If it's remotely related to a lie the program told you, it belongs here.  Each poster gets one off-topic exemption with an informal warning to let them know they've used their freebie up.  Please keep AA discussion to the appropriate forum and thread (not a request).  "Mere mentions" of AA allowed so long as it's on topic.  12 step philosophy in program context allowed.

5
The Troubled Teen Industry / Sociopathy and the Cult Leader
« on: November 01, 2010, 11:28:58 PM »
Sociopathy.  Some people think that the nice little old lady couldn't possibly be systematically bankrupting parents and discarding "students" on the streets like trash.  Wrong.  Some humans, whether by nature or nurture, lack consciences, and given a chance, the'll rip you off or even kill if they think they can get they're way by doing so.  They're often very clever, very charismatic, and understand social systems.  These are the designers of the cult.

Discuss:  On topic (not general), concerning the charachter of (some) program directors (some are true believers).  True believers vs sociopathy comparisons or discussion allowed.  True believers discussion not allowed. (start another thread copying and pasting a quoted post into a new thread in the appropriate forum with and appropriate name).  Discussion on the structure or definition of a TTI style non professional therapy cult should go in another thread.

Admin/mod note: you can use a bold tag and "Discuss: to flag a moderator as to the rules you want enforced on your thread.  Any changes to the default will be adhered to.  You can also exclude certain posters from the discussion by using this tag.  This isn't a ban or censorship so much is it is an expression of freedom of association.  They won't be warned after an offense as long as it's not an intentional offense.  On the other hand, they are allowed to quote your posts and start their own threads, with their own rules.  Further note:  Commenting on the rules of the thread is always considered on-topic.  If you feel a person has rigged a discussion or has written his rules in such a way as to thwart your argument, feel free to point it out.  However for this thread I kindly request you start another thread to discuss these rule.  Thanks.

6
Addiction Treatment Philosophy / Can AA be Dangerous?
« on: September 30, 2010, 12:23:13 AM »
Quote from: "Maximilian"
I know what you're saying, but I, personally at least, don't think going to meetings or finding God through religion is anywhere near as unhealthy or as dangerous as a serious alcohol or drug addiction.

Catholic Church?  Yeah they're doing wonders with aids in Africa by telling everybody to knock off the condoms.  Muhammad's 7'th century rampage?  Scientology's targeting of "Suppressive Persons" who've exposed the scam.  Not that i'd qualify Scientology as a religion, mind you.  The problem with belief is that you embrace the illogical and reject the more rational part of you're brain.

And just because AA isn't outwardly destructive doesn't mean it can't cause harm (it can).  It can cause increases in binge drinking behaviors compared to no treatment at all according to the Brandsma study (there are other similar studies).  Belief, what i'm talking about above, is what causes this increase.  Why?  Because drunks, rather than being taught self discipline (teach a man to fish), are taught that they are powerless over alcohol.  They have to "let go and let god" to be saved.  Well.  Apparently god isn't catching many drunks nowadays.  Maybe, if he/she/it exists, he wants drunks to use the free will and reason given to them.

Reason is another thing AA is bad at, and programs use this technique too: they'll ridicule rational thought and logic as "stinking thinking".  People do this all because they believe, blindly, in a guy who was basically a philandering drunk who ripped people off, tripped on acid, and claimed to see god when he was tripping balls on a "belladonna cure".  Seriously folks.  It's fuckin stupid.  

I'm not saying belief is bad, per se.  It can be a source of strength for some people.**  What i'm saying is that you don't mix a bullshit fatalistic belief with the behavioral sciences of people who already have a hard controlling themselves.  Or better yet, figure out for yourself what you believe because if other people are telling you how you can save your "doomed" life, they're probably running a con, or at bes aret blindly misled by con artists long dead.

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If people use pot to quit drugs that are hurting them, I'm all for it. Whatever works for people I support, even if it's not AA. If somebody had a solution that worked for everybody, they would be a billionaire. unfortunately addiction isn't that easy to cure, it's more like a lifetime condition where you treat the symptoms, that's how I see it at least.

Well.  You're invested in your lifestyle now.  You have all AA friends, i'm sure. You have a sponsor or are sponsoring others.  You talk about what you believe all the time with those who believe the same way. I'm not surprised you believe with that constant re-enforcement.  You're on a placebo, Max.  Simply a placebo.  But you'll never admit that because you believe you'll end up dead, insane, or in jail.  Heaven forbid you use your "stinking thinking" capacity.  I'm not recommending you do drugs by any means.  What i'm asking you to do is to question whether or not you really need to credit others with work you have done for yourself.  Yes, being around other addicts probably helps, but there are alternatives that don't come with the baggage of a true self limiting belief (i hate that term, but it's appropriate in this case).

** I loved Book of Eli for that reason, even though he sorta did kill a lot of people for a book (ok, so it was the last of a book...  i give him some credit).

7
Thought Reform / New forum (Thought Reform)
« on: September 25, 2010, 01:10:07 AM »
A place to discuss how kids are turned into marketing material and discarded on exit plans like trash.  A place to discuss why some who have been through and objectively described abuse subjectively see that abuse as necessary or deserved.  A place to discuss why some teens, even years out of the program (yet supported by a compatible belief structure), will lie to protect the program (look at AARC).  A place to discuss why and how "students" are recruited to become staff and join their new family.  A place to discuss why so many "success stories" are dead, many from suicides.  A place to discuss the after effects.  A place to discuss healing.

note: I may subjectively sticky certain threads in this forum.  Make it an interesting discussion.

8
It's a bit dated, but it's great reading.  Somebody sent me it this morning.
[attachment=0:24zp13zd]carolina springs insurance case.pdf[/attachment:24zp13zd]

The gist of it is that the insurance company got upset that WWASP allegedly misrepresented itself when applying for the policy. They insurance company is saying that if they knew what was going on they would never have insured Carolina Springs.
Quote
Lexington justifiably and reasonably relied upon material misrepresentations, omissions and concealment of facts by CSA when it issued the Policy. These misrepresentations, omissions and concealment of facts were material to the acceptance of the risk by Lexington. If the true facts had been disclosed in the policy application, as required by the application, Lexington in good faith would have: (1) not issued the Policy; or (2) not issued the Policy with as large of a limit of liability or at the premium rate as applied for; or (3) not provided coverage with respect to any claims arising out of any of the alleged wrongdoing alleged in the Vaiden Lawsuit. Consequently, Lexington is entitled to rescind the Policy.

9
Web forum hosting / New Forum
« on: September 12, 2010, 07:11:14 PM »
Due to popular request, I've added a new forum for discussion of addiction treatment (aa, SOS, SMART, RR, addiction theories, etc).  It's opt in and moderated.  Password is "atp".  If you want to discuss AA, that's the place to do it.

10
Addiction Treatment Philosophy / New Forum
« on: September 12, 2010, 06:50:31 PM »
I've added this forum so there's a dedicated, moderated, place where people can discuss addiction treatment philosophies and methods. If you want to discuss AA, Rational Recovery, SOS, SMART, ibogaine, the nature of addiction, etc... discuss it here.

11
Web forum hosting / Definition Of A Sockpuppet
« on: September 11, 2010, 04:44:45 PM »
Quote from: "ajax13"
Psy already said you are a Sockpuppet.
No, I didn't.  I said quite the opposite, that "IslamIsViolent" and "Stonewall" were not the same people.

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a New York Times article claims that "sockpuppeting" is defined as "the act of creating a fake online identity to praise, defend or create the illusion of support for one's self, allies or company."[2]

The key difference between a sockpuppet and a regular pseudonym (sometimes termed an "alt" which is short for alternate, as in alternate identity) is the pretense that the puppet is a third party who is not affiliated with the puppeteer or acting under their control for their benefit.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sockpuppet_(Internet)

12
Open Free for All / New Fornits Rules/Constitution [Ratified]
« on: September 08, 2010, 07:25:55 PM »
Laws
1. If a thread already exists on a topic, use it, rather than start a new one.
2. Don't derail threads by changing the topic. Start a new topic.
3. No outing of home addresses or phone numbers without a person's consent.  This includes linking to such information.
4. Post your topics in the appropriate forum, with an appropriate name.
5. Multiple usernames are disallowed if you use them for sockpuppetry. Sockpuppets will be outed.
6. No attacking other posters with insults (this includes driving parents off). You can make your point with civility.  Responding to an insult with an insult is not a justification.
7. Impersonation of another poster or living person is not allowed, unless it is obvious parody.  The standard is this: if a stupid person could mistake the identity to be that of the parodied, it's a violation.  You may either agree to have such an account labeled as "parody" or have it deleted.
8. One unmoderated forum will remain (open free for all) however it will be opt-in, similar to the drama box.


Bill of Rights
1. You have the right to your opinion, however unpopular.  You will not be disciplined for your opinions so long their expression stays within the rules of the forum.
2. You have a right to an impartial moderation.  If you get into an argument with a moderator, that moderator may not punish you and must rely on the judgement of another moderator.
3. You have the right to an appeal.  If you feel you were treated unjustly by one of our moderators you have the right to request an appeal.  A panel of moderators will go over your case and make a decision affirming or overturning the decision.  Affirmations must be unanimous.
4. You have a right to be informed of all correspondance concerning your case.
5. You have the right to privacy.  You have the right to create a second or third account for the purposes of retaining anonymity.

Penalties:

You will be informed if you violate a rule.  If repeated violation occur, your account may be disabled temporarily.  After your account is enabled again, you will be considered on a probationary period.  If further violations occur, you may be banned permanently.

This constitution only applies to postings from this point on (9/8/2010).

I'll be editing this rough draft as we come up with ideas. I welcome feedback. Just so we're clear, once these rules are finalized, they'll apply to everybody regardless of their opinions or group affiliation.

13
Open Free for All / Considering full moderation
« on: September 07, 2010, 06:17:46 PM »
Considering the mess this entire board has become, Ginger and I are for the first time seriously considering full moderation.  It's not the topics discussed that's the problem, it's the lack of organization and the constant derailing of threads.  For example, there do not need to be so many threads on the same topic, regardless of what it is.  You might not like it, but right now nobody new is showing up which is not the way the forum used to be.  It's become a funny farm. A total disaster area.  If we decide on full moderation, rules might be:

1. If a thread already exists on a topic, use it.
2. Don't derail threads by changing the topic. Start a new topic.
4. Post your topics in the appropriate forum.
3. No outing of personal identifying information of parents, or teens in programs.
5. Multiple usernames are disallowed if you use them for sockpuppetry (anonymity purposes are fine, for example, if you are going to post in the "I Just" thread).  Sockpuppets will be outed and may result in a ban.
6. No attacking other posters with insults (this includes driving parents off). You can make your point with civility.
7. One unmoderated forum will remain (open free for all) however it will be opt-in, similar to the drama box.

Punishments for violations would not be retroactive.

Something like this:
viewtopic.php?f=31&t=30541#p363935

This isn't a democracy.  You're on private property.  If we decide to do this, you'll just have to deal with it.  Just to make it clear, these rules would not ban Whooter, Max, Danny, or whoever for disagreeing with the majority.  They'd apply to everybody equally, regardless of personal views.  Hopefully, if the forum is better organized, more traffic will return.

Yes, we are aware this is a total compromise of the ideals intended originally for the forum.  However the experiment failed, and now something needs to be done.  Reactions?  Rules you think are good?  Rules you think are crap?

14
This is from an old forum I once had.  A guy named Oreos wrote these posts.  He had a tendency to delete them after writing so I archived a bunch of the good ones.  It explains a good deal about what went on in WWASPs programs like SCLA.
Quote from: "Oreos"
Posted: 26 May 2007 03:32 pm    Post subject:    
· Quote    · Edit    · Delete    · IP
Quote from: "PsyAdmin"
Quote from: "Techdad"
Quote from: "Psy"
Quote from: "Oreos"
The younger kids and 'softer' programs, use a even more insidious means of manipulations, their parents love. The parents write those letters that indicate their love, from that point on, is conditional.


As soon as I got my first one of those, i totally lost any hope of ever talking to my parents again.  I lost the desire.  I didn't want their help...  It's surreal, reading that letter in retrospect.


There is a scene in the TB documentary where a father tells his daughter that his love for her is conditional and that if she doesn't finish the program, he will never speak to her again. I was blown away by that. WTF? How does a parent get so mentally twisted that they come to believe in that shit? I mean, I have been a desperate parent, I have done stupid things, but I just can't get my mind around that level of bizarreness.


Parent seminars.  LGATs....  Some programs are far more cult-like than others.  Some never intend to return the kid, but to keep him/her there indefinitely until the parents go broke, or become recruiters.



I think the parents who think this sort of thing might work sometimes also seek out WWASPS type programs. I know people want to believe that a parent would never act like this unless they were brainwashed, but my dad never set foot in a seminar and did the same exact thing. Many parents facing the situation had at most done 3 days of discovery. They go back to their normal lives, sleep in their beds. I'm not sure I am convinced that a three day seminar is going to change a parent all that much. By dismissing the parents as "brainwashed by seminars" it alleviates them of responsibility in the clear choice they had, or at least some did, as my own dad.

I remember the day very vividly It was four days after I Turned 18. I told them I wanted to leave and they had me on the phone with my dad (first time ever I got to talk on the phone) so Ia m in the office with the family rep. She has him on the phone, he's like.. they tell me you want to leave. I say yes, this place is a prison camp, start babbling and seven months worth of pent of shit comes pouring out trying to explain to him the scam right in front of the family rep. He isn't impressed and is obviously playing for the other team at this point.  Rolling Eyes

I want you to stay and finish high school.. I had like 2 credits left which took maybe a month to complete. I said no way i am leaving today. He started with his lies and shit about having me legally detained until 21 based on my unfitness psychologically. I called that bluff too and said no I am leaving anyways. So he pulls out the last card and says, that this is his birthday (it was and I forgotten) and that this was the worst birthday ever. If I left that I was on my own.. and did the same explanation all wwasps parents end up doing probably. So he's like you have to stay and do what they say otherwise when you take your exit plan you will not get anything only a ride to the Missoula homeless shelter. At least they usually gave $30 in cash for food or whatever. They weren't giving me anything but the clothes I was wearing. So basically I'm like fuck you, and walk out of the family reps office.  

But that was definitely not the only time. A couple months later after I ended up back in my home city, he agreed to let me live with him if I followed a strict contract which included no smoking drinking, etc. I broke it the first week and came home high and he called the cops on me and had me arrested. Then when they let me out he picks me up and takes me to a lockup psych ward. After two and a half weeks with those crazy adults (now I was over 18 and in the adult wards) they let me out on the condition I went to some kind of treatment center. So my dad found this sober living house. He dropped me off and it was a full on AA cult, group home with leader kind of shit. I walked out and left my suitcases in a dumpster hidden, and tried to find a pay phone. I got a hold of my dad, he was still on the freeway home I could hear. I said I can't live there with those people and begged him to come pick me up. He said no and hung up. I tried calling back but his phone was turned off. So it doesn't take a program for parents to do this shit, that's for sure.

Since I had been gone and in various programs and lockups for the previous year I had lost all contact with any friends, and I had no phone numbers or anything like that. I forget them all. So  I was pretty much left shit out of luck.

They really need to take the word "love" out of the phrase "tough-love" because there's nothing loving about it. It's all about control and coercion.

I always found it strange how over a relatively short period of time "helping a kid" goes from traditional treatment finally descending into the idea of leaving them on the streets with nothing.


Posted: 26 May 2007 03:55 pm    Post subject:    
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All of them. It's not like there were 10 rules hanging on the wall, if you followed you would be okay. If people think that is what a program is like, they are misreading the entire situation.

A private program like SCL consists of leadership who are the seminar trainers, parent trainers, the owners, the staff, the 18 year old kids, the junior staff kids, the lower levels. In that order. The seminar facilitators are the "priests" of WWASPS. Fanatical program parents strive to become these facilitators, as seen in the Montana PBS video.

So imagine an ideology based on , let's call it the robot child syndrome. You can't swear, you can't masturbate, you can't look at the opposite sex, you do not deserve any privileges (including compassion and love) and must thank your captors for this treatment. You must be willing to snitch on your closest friend at any given time if asked to do so.

This is a group of people, living in tremendous fear they might be dropped back to the starting point. Kids make it up by stepping on the backs of other kids. If they're lucky they can "prove themselves" in less hurtful and dramatic ways, but that's the way it usually goes down. Betraying your best friend by telling program staff during a seminar shit aout your closest buddy is a sure way to make yourself look good. Or is it? They might drop you too for "snitching". You never really know.

Because that's how it works, there are no rules. The only rules is that you must act like they want you to act. If you are too stubborn or too stupid to figure out yoru lines in this sick sadistic live action theater you are forced to partake in, you will be isolated and deprived until you are so physically and emotionally uncomfortable you will look at a normal day in the program as a good day. A good day because your definition of good and bad have been altered. A good day is a day that you are not treated like an animal and kept in a small disgusting cage and fed a handful of lettuce and 2 spoons of kidney beans, forced to eat with your dirty hands. Some kids get to the point where this treatment is redefined as tolerable simply because it allows them the comfort of psychological intactness. A intermission in the theater, if you will.

So rules... shit, there weren't any rules. The only rule was to move up the program, that was the rule. Bullshit, lie, act, confess, betray, crawl, and fight your way to freedom.

It really defies explanation as to why anyone would subject their kid to the type of treatment I witnessed, it really does. A logical response simply does not illustrate the true reality as to what occurred.

Posted: 26 May 2007 04:24 pm    Post subject:    
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Quote from: "techdad"
Quote from: "Oreos"
Think if you were sent to jail for smoking pot or doing a few lines, how much you would hate the system for that? Well now assume that system is your parents and you might get an idea of how the kids feel.


Good point. Would it make any difference if your parents were deceived and had no idea how bad it was? Parents have some idea of what jail is like, and all the bad things that can happen there. But some of them are really clueless that the so-called therapy at a TBS (especially the one you went to) is really just punishment, behavior modification and breaking kids down. I'm remembering the dad at the beginning of "Who's Watching the Kids?". His son went to the same shitpit you did. He said something like, "I never would've imagined my son would come home from boarding school with two broken teeth."

It doesn't ease the pain, but would it change how you feel about them if they really didn't have a clue?


Hell I wouldn't really of been all that angry if my dad had simply lived up to his side of our original agreement, when he dropped me off there. I agreed to stay until my 18th birthday. He agreed to pick me up on my 18th birthday. This was very clear from the beginning.

Over time I sent letters home explaining I thought this was a mistake I was placed there. What we called the hobbit, my dad called "special needs" in his letters. But by the time got close I was turning 18, he addressed my concerns about my own treatment as being a spoiled brat, manipulative, and needed to work the program. Along with other program cliches I never heard from him ever in his life. Then he sent letters saying I had to stay until I was 21. If not by choice, they would start the legal proceedings. He wasn't fooled, he was actively working against me, from my perspective.

In my view, the program gave him a tool, and he used it. He was always a control freak. I was just his latest victim in his sick twisted fantasies of saving people. He's the AA/NA fanatic who won't be friends with 'normies.' He's the type of dad that took us to the national AA conventions on vacation. He's the dad who used Alanon to drive our mom away when I was five. (according to her) Is it any coincidence that people living with him end up resorting to alcohol or drugs to escape his madness? I don't think so anymore. But really the worst part of it, is when he tries to "save you" after he finds out about it. Then the fun really begins.

So no, he was not "fooled" in any way. If that were true he would of apologized a long time ago. Instead he tells me that I needed it. I needed to be treated the way I was treated for some reason. That is still a mystery to me.

I no longer have anger for him. He does this kind of shit to everyone who makes the mistake of entering his life and becoming close to him. Problem is I never had a choice. Now I do, so I choose to stay away from that mess.

The line had been crossed long before SCL though. The reason I talk about SCL so much is because so many people went there and have heard of it, it's a warehouse of a program if I've ever seen one. I was in isolation in questionable facilities prior to SCL, so it was no new thing to my dad to be told over the phone, your kid is being held in isolation for whatever reason.  So to him it was nothing new. It wasn't anything new to me either.

I was at a psych hospital prior to SCL, for a couple months actually. The reason I was there for so long is because they were "Experimenting " with my meds to find the "Right fit".  Rolling Eyes  Very Happy Well they had me on 4mg a day of xanax, 25mg (thats a lot) zyprexa, effexor, buspar, klonopin, ppu, and some other pill that was supposed to curb cocaine urges (even though I was locked up lol). So they had me fucked up 24/7. I was falling asleep at 3pm and in a daze all day long. They kept tweaking my drug regimen, and at some point I start seeing shit, hearing voices. Well this freaked me out, I think I was justifiably freaked out, and I had an "panic attack" they said. They said I was incoherent and refusing to take my meds and screaming they were poisoning me, and starting banging my head against a wall.

So this is the first time I experienced a takedown psych hospital style. It was actually very orderly! They handed me a small drinking cup with some liquid in it, and then showed me this big needle. They were like, we can do this the easy way or hard way. So I drank the cup. I pretty much fell over within a few seconds. It was liquid Thorazine. It completely shut down my muscles or something, I was jello. So they carried me into their isolation room which is a small white room with a skylight. A metal slab bed type ting bolted to the floor and a small window on the door. A small video camera in the corner. So they lied me face down and tied me down to the metal bed with the leather straps. They said be quiet and stop yelling about meds for a while and we'll let you go. I passed out and fell asleep from the Thorazine .

Woke up a couple hours later and didn't scream or anything because I wanted to be let out of the straps. A nurse came by and looked in and saw I was awake and came in. She asked if I would be good, Is aid yeah. So they let me out of the straps. But I had to stay in the white room (isolation) for the rest of the 24hrs. This was also a way of punishment. A way to reinforce the fact I had to take my meds. That I had no control over what was going on. So both my parents actually saw me in this isolation room that day during visiting hours. My dad actually saw me in the straps at a later date when this whole scenario repeated itself again for a different reason.

So my dad had a pretty good idea what goes on behind the scenes and when they say isolation what that means. At least in psych isolation it is somewhat more managed, and you get the same meals you normally would. The temperature is monitored, you get to use a normal bathroom, although monitored. At SCL the isolation room was freezing cold. We had to sleep on the hard ground with no pillow in just a sleeping bag, it was still very cold though. The time line was completely on the whim of staff. A three day stay could be extended to five or six days simply because they lose count (happened to me). You only got a small plate of lettuce and beans and no utensils and a banana and tortilla for the whole day. Other kids in there sometimes lost it and would throw their shit on the walls, and everything else you can imagine gross that can happen when you treat children like animals.. .so it was gross.

My point is that I believe, my dad found a system which he deemed acceptable because it lined up with his longtime cherished beliefs of AA/NA and that more subtle form of coerciveness. To him, all these isolations, and dehumanization is logical consequence of using drugs. He always would repeat this AA mantra that "it takes a full two years to get drugs out of your system". Well biologically we know that's not true. But this was his thinking, completely and fully. That's what started it all, I overdosed and ended up in the hospital. So at what point does a parent question whether drugging a kid into oblivion, and treating them like their crazy going to help? They are so off base on why teens use drugs, it's not even funny. It's scary actually.

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The Troubled Teen Industry / Misuse of The Word "Cult"
« on: September 02, 2010, 07:48:20 PM »
According to Margaret Singer, a group must fit three criteria in order to be called a cult.

1. The origin of the group (the intent of the leader, where the beliefs come from, etc).
2. The use of thought reform (Liftons 8, Singer's 6, etc...)
3. The organization must be structured like an inverted "T".  The charismatic leader is on top, and everybody else is on the bottom.  There may be a leadership structure but ultimately all decisions are made by the great, all knowing, leader.

A group can be a "cult like group", "thought reform environment", or "compete and utter bullshit" but unless it fits all three of the above criteria, it's inaccurate to call it a "cult".  AA is not a cult.  It's charismatic leader is dead.  It also has little organizational structure.  It may be a cult like group or a thought reform environment but to apply the term to AA cheapens it (especially when there are programs out there that do fit all three).

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