Author Topic: dang,get a load of this horseshit  (Read 1021 times)

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Offline Anonymous

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« on: October 21, 2005, 06:09:00 PM »
how does MMS promote the process of individuation?  more like submission to me!
successful reintegration??- HA! that was almost as  painful as living there.

Didn't MMS turn level system?

Kids were subdued, eh?  how about miserable?  terrified?  depressed?

who else thought the metaphor thing was, horseshit? HORSESHIT, JOHN.  wouldn't I like for a minute to be John's headmaster so I can give him a metaphor

Quality School?  Lon Woodbury is an idiot  

Main Entry: in·di·vid·u·a·tion
Pronunciation: -"vi-j&-'wA-sh&n
Function: noun
1 : the act or process of individuating : as a (1) : the development of the individual from the universal (2) : the determination of the individual in the general b : the process by which individuals in society become differentiated from one another c

Mission Mountain School
John Mercer, Administrator
Condon, Montana
(406) 754-2580

(From a description of the school's program)

Mission Mountain School forms an extended family for both the student and parents. Within this extended family the student finds the boundaries he or she needs to feel safe and begin the critical process of individuation. This personal growth within the context of family and community forms the foundation for successful reintegration into society. Our students? needs would likely go unmet in the larger programs that focus on behavior management and compliance. These programs are based on a level system where student graduation is contingent upon completion of a series of emotional and behavioral tasks. Individualized attention to the student?s unique problems and process of individuation can be lost to the emphasis on having the students achieve the desired ?level? behaviors. As a result students may learn how to comply and ?work the system?, rather than address or solve their real problems.

As part of the family treatment plan, the parents will continue to come to Mission Mountain School for periodic visits, and the student will return home for periodic visits. Both parents and child agree to visit plans that set out specific boundaries and responsibilities for the family and child to meet prior to, during, and after each visit. Upon completion of each visit, the plan is reviewed by the family and Mission Mountain Staff, and progress and problems noted in the individual and Family Treatment Plans. In this way, the family and the student has opportunities (to) try out new approaches to old problems and apply what they have learned at Mission Mountain School. It is important to note that the visits are not vacations, but times for the student and family to do real work addressing significant issues. We have found that much of this work is best done in the context of a family adventure or activity. Hence, families are encouraged to come and participate in our high quality recreation activities with the students... or to simply come and experience the beauty of Montana at our Double Diamond Ranch Facility.

------

Structure, defined as immediate and appropriate consequences for one?s actions, is still tight, but there were some signs the staff had instituted rules to establish better control. I first sensed this while eating lunch with the girls. I noticed they were a little quieter, or more subdued than I expected. I learned that currently they sit in a horseshoe arrangement with each girl sitting in a staff-assigned seat. Most of the girls? conversations were about assigned subjects such as what they were getting out of the school, with each girl speaking one at a time. Perhaps some of this control was necessary since the school had just graduated a large number of older girls who had been leaders in the community. Possibly until some of the younger girls took on the mantle of leadership, some additional control was needed as a substitute for the temporarily weaker positive peer culture. But to me, it was a significant change from the days when the school might cancel the day?s scheduled activities to take advantage of weather or the students? mood, in order to spontaneously go biking or skiing or do some other activity that seemed needed at the time.

The staff still envisions their school as a metaphor for life. Many of the conversations between the staff and the girls are framed in the context of the girls? ?journey? or ?quest.? The challenges the girls face as a result of what life brings their way, or what they find within themselves, are portrayed as the ?dragons? they must conquer. I saw this presented very clearly as the search for a ?holy grail? in the skit the girls had written and presented as part of my daughter?s graduation ceremony six years ago. These metaphors are still used both in the school?s therapeutic work and as a way to present the philosophy of the school.

Mission Mountain School is still a quality school, doing marvelous things for the girls they enroll. The changes I have talked about are just indications of a difference, and are not necessarily better or worse than the school I remember from six years ago. Perhaps the students with whom they work best are a little different; perhaps students? needs have changed some. Maybe these changes reflect a natural evolution that will always happen over time in any human institution that is based first and foremost on meeting the needs of their students.

http://www.strugglingteens.com/archives ... sit03.html
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2005, 06:11:00 PM »
positive peer culture?  more like peer survellance to meet the programs end?

lon woodbury is an idiot
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2005, 06:31:00 PM »
so is kristie

By Kristie Vollar
Woodbury Reports, Inc. - Referral Assistant
208-267-5550
[email protected]

[I wrote this essay for my Psychology Class and thought it might be interesting to the parents/professionals who are involved in the network. I want to clarify, however, that I am only describing two therapeutic approaches that are components of more comprehensive therapeutic and/or emotional growth programs, which are not explained in their entirety in this discussion.]

At the beginning of this class, I completed a personal information sheet in which I mentioned I had gone to a wilderness program and then to Mission Mountain School. Mission Mountain School is a therapeutic boarding school for girls who are struggling with dependencies, have poor decision-making skills, struggle with healthy relationships, and in general, display addictive behaviors. The school uses various therapeutic approaches, including behavior modification and psychoanalytic therapy. My discussion will focus on my experiences with these two therapies while I was enrolled at Mission Mountain School, with additional examples drawn from other schools/programs with which I work. Most of these programs use behavior modification and psychoanalytic therapy as part of a more comprehensive program.

Behavior modification is a therapeutic technique that generally uses rewards and consequences in the form of a level system to reinforce desired behaviors. Many of the wilderness programs use a level system where kids start out in one group and work their way to the highest-level group, at which point they are ready to either move on to another facility, or go home. An example is the Aspen Achievement Academy program, described in Lon Woodbury?s visit report that appears in the directory, Places for Struggling Teens? 2000/01 [published by Woodbury Reports, Inc]. This program is ?specifically structured to bring the adolescent through a modern ?rite of passage? to responsible young adulthood. Each child goes through four phases of the program, each with increasing responsibilities and privileges, as they complete 27 assignments. The first phase is called Mouse, and is basically an orientation lasting a couple of days. Next is the Coyote phase, which deals with personal issues along with learning the skills needed for survival and comfort in the wilderness. In the Buffalo phase, the student moves on into community and family issues, and works on teamwork, which is often a very difficult concept for children with low self-esteem to grasp. The highest level is called Eagle, where the student learns responsibility by taking on leadership roles in the group. Each phase builds on the previous one, with the goal of each child learning self-control and the ability to establish and work toward accomplishing goals.?

In addition to the level system, many programs also utilize licensed therapists to help the child understand how their emotions interfere with their ability to change their behaviors. Sometimes the child will tap into repressed memories and need a counselor to help them understand and cope with the feelings that arise. This form of therapy is based on psychoanalytic theory. For example, I was acting out sexually when I was 17 as a result of repressed memories of being sexually molested when I was less than three years old. Repressing my memories of molestation was how I had been coping with the scariness and pain of the situation. But at 17, I had been sexually acting out to attract more attention in a misguided effort to improve my sense of self-worth. I felt ashamed, and didn?t even know why. After I had been in a therapeutic setting for awhile, where I felt safe and had been learning about myself and some of the reasons why I behaved the way I did, I started to remember being molested. The counselors were then able to help me understand that ?it wasn?t my fault? and helped me learn to cope with the new feelings and memories that surrounded being molested. I verified with my mom that I had in fact talked to her about being molested when I was two and was able to ?process? a lot of feelings that came up by physically hitting a sponge block with a large bat because I felt angry. I wrote letters to the molesters telling them how their actions had been wrong. I was both angry and hurt that they could take advantage of a 2 1/2 year old child. I worked on art projects and things that interested me to remind myself that I was ?worth it? and there was no reason for me to feel ashamed.

Other programs we work with also use behavior modification with a reward system to reinforce positive behaviors and natural consequences to extinguish unwanted behaviors. A child will learn through experience that if he is resistant and doesn?t pitch his tent, and it rains, he will get wet. So he learns to pitch his tent, at the same time learning that what he does directly affects the type of experience he is going to have. Resistance is common in the beginning of a Therapeutic Wilderness Expedition, but as the child learns what behaviors will bring negative consequences, he also learns what behaviors will bring positive rewards, and therefore, will become less resistant and more cooperative. Naturally, as he begins to cooperate and learns appropriate behavior, he moves up through the levels. Another example, also from the Places for Struggling Teens 2000/01 directory, describes Lon Woodbury?s visit to the Ascent program: ?The structure is very tight? the student?s choices at any one time are few and clear?wake up is at 7:00 am?students are given five minutes to get dressed, make their beds, and gather outside. If anyone takes longer, then they all go back to bed to do it over again until they do it right. Also, when the students go any place at Base Camp, they do it single file and on the run. The only time I saw the students walking was to a graduation for one of the students. Even then, they go single file, with no talking. When a student falls into his/her negative feelings or becomes resistant, the student is placed on a stump in the large circular center, roughly equivalent to a ?time-out room?. The student is physically in the middle of all the activities, but obviously isolated from everyone. This is physically symbolizing the emotional isolation the student has created, and it becomes his/her sole job at that time to process the negative feelings that are going on and to work on resolving those feelings so he/she can rejoin the group.?

The therapist or psychologist who uses behavior modification, looks at a person?s behaviors rather than their brains and nervous systems. The kids we work with are generally placed in a program due to the behaviors they are displaying, for example, their grades are slipping, they are running away, hanging out with ?negative peers?, are into drugs or alcohol, have a low self-confidence, or poor leadership skills. They might be really angry and/or aggressive and perhaps are depressed. The first thing they need is an intervention that will get their attention and help them realize that their behavior, for whatever reason, is not appropriate. In the wilderness, they are able to work on their self-confidence and leadership skills. They also can begin to tap into some of their ?real? issues, the reasons why they are ?acting out?, instead of focusing only on the ?symptoms? of the problem, their acting out behaviors.

The psychoanalytic perspective can shed light on some of the causes of certain behaviors. The psychoanalytic theory, as developed by Sigmund Freud, was based on the assumption that much of our behavior stems from unconscious processes.

Mission Mountain School used behavior modification to provide us with structure so that we were able to learn what behaviors and actions create a safe environment. As we began to feel safe, we could eventually tap into some of the deeper issues. Since some of us didn?t know why we were angry, weren?t sure why we felt ashamed, or why we couldn?t make good eye contact. First we had to modify our lifestyles, and learn how to ?process?, that is, understand and cope with the emotions and events that were constantly ocurring. We learned to adhere to our structured schedules and work with the program to avoid negative consequences for the entire group by modifying our behaviors. Then the therapists, using psychoanalysis, counseled us to help us look deeper into our behaviors and learn how to process the information that began to surface in our conscious memory. Many of the girls had been molested during the first 3 years of their lives; many had other types of abuse at a young age, many felt they didn?t ?belong?, doing ?what ever it took? to fit in. Tapping into repressed memories helped us work through some of our feelings, helping us to alter our behaviors as we learned how to manage the new feelings that accompanied the new memories. Each girl?s history was evaluated in order for the school?s professional staff to implement the appropriate therapies needed to recover from past pain and regroup towards a healthy, positive future.

Another aspect of behavior modification used by Mission Mountain School, called an ?intervention?, is a period of intense physical work, reduced sleep, stricter rules and more intense group therapy. It is used for breaking into an ?underground?, the secrets the girls would keep from the group in order to be sneaky or plan a run. During an intervention we would have very strict inspections of our work, work all day in the hot sun, and if someone was resistant, or we didn?t pass inspection, we would start the day over again. This was used to ?break? down our defenses so that we would share what was going on with us. When an intervention lasts long enough, one gets physically, mentally and emotionally worn out until there isn?t enough energy left to hide ?what?s really going on?. The longest intervention I was on at the school was 22 days.

The main difference between these two approaches is that behavior modification focuses on changing behaviors, using techniques such as a level system that incorporates rewards and consequences, while the psychoanalytic approach seeks to uncover the underlying causes, such as repressed memories, that are causing the unwanted behaviors, to help the person better understand their motivations and find more effective ways to deal with their emotions. Many programs effectively integrate these two approaches, along with others, to help students modify difficult behaviors and emotions.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2005, 06:37:00 PM »
Tru Dat!  We've always known that.  But MMS had to make sure to let her go home early, and anything else she wanted because they are connected in the industry.  Jack ASS!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2005, 06:47:00 PM »
Lon's daugther is a REFERRAL ASSISTANT?

The Hunted Has Become The Hunter?

Very sad, indeed.

 :sad:
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline katfish

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2005, 02:30:00 PM »
Dr. Charles Huffine response to Kristie's article

The wilderness endurance and "intervention" therapies that involved
exhausting work and exposure to the elements has been totally
discredited as not helpful at all im mental health treatment and, in
fact, harmful or all to often dangerous as it may expose youth to
serious accidents or exposure or exhaustion related illness.

Behavior modification through level systems have been thoroughly
debunked as well. Level systems are common in all residential and
hospital programs, but are because they help to provide structure and
order in a setting that could easily get chaotic. It enables staff to
stay in control which is not at all a bad thing, but it is not therapy.
Cookie cutter behavioral programs applied to all kids cannot and does
not address the individual issues in any one kid. Behavior therapies to
be effective have to be tailored to a youth through an evaluation
process and the development of a collaborative relationship. Behavior
modification done in a good behavior therapy can be effective but never
as an imposition without the active participation by the youth being
treated.

Recovered memories are as controversial as anything in mental health. It
is true that the concept has its origins in Freud's work. Much of
psychoanalytic theory, even in its more elegant forms, is seen as a
relic of a byegone era and discounted as not relevant today. But we must
achnowledge that some adults, who have a wish to explore their own
psyches may get a great deal out of a true psychoanalytic therapy (lying
on the couch and everything). Using associative techniques and free
association some repressed memories may indeed come to the fore. But
they are very unreliable in content, even if they do accurately recreate
an emotional state one had had as a child over some traumatic event.
What we know is that unskilled practitioners with no real training in
psychodynamic therapy (soft derivative of psychoanalysis) can harm their
patients by evoking confusing and poorly understood feelings. When
patients are vulnerable and upset we know that any nudging at all from a
therapist can evoke a thought that is mistaken for a memory. This "false
memory," evoked by an over eager therapist was found to be common in
some of the famous trials of aleged cult sexual abuse perpetrators.
Recovering memories of abuse in children and youth became a rage by a
movement in Colorada a few years ago and which some were seriously
exploring ways to reach very troubled youth, many practiced holding
individuals to force memories to surface. Some practioneres of holding
therapy smothered or suffocated kids and they died. It was a real
scandle and criminal convictions were sought. All of us attempting to do
"deep" therapy are under very tight obligations not to lead or influence
or force an individual who may be subtlely or crudly rewarded for coming
up with a juicy memory. The drive to force such memories out of youth as
described by this girl would be considered malpractice and very harmful
by any professoinal group that I know.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
Margaret Mead

Offline Anonymous

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dang,get a load of this horseshit
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2005, 02:46:00 PM »
Quote
On 2005-10-23 11:30:00, katfish wrote:

"Dr. Charles Huffine response to Kristie's article



The wilderness endurance and "intervention" therapies that involved

exhausting work and exposure to the elements has been totally

discredited as not helpful at all im mental health treatment and, in

fact, harmful or all to often dangerous as it may expose youth to

serious accidents or exposure or exhaustion related illness.



Behavior modification through level systems have been thoroughly

debunked as well. Level systems are common in all residential and

hospital programs, but are because they help to provide structure and

order in a setting that could easily get chaotic. It enables staff to

stay in control which is not at all a bad thing, but it is not therapy.

Cookie cutter behavioral programs applied to all kids cannot and does

not address the individual issues in any one kid. Behavior therapies to

be effective have to be tailored to a youth through an evaluation

process and the development of a collaborative relationship. Behavior

modification done in a good behavior therapy can be effective but never

as an imposition without the active participation by the youth being

treated.



Recovered memories are as controversial as anything in mental health. It

is true that the concept has its origins in Freud's work. Much of

psychoanalytic theory, even in its more elegant forms, is seen as a

relic of a byegone era and discounted as not relevant today. But we must

achnowledge that some adults, who have a wish to explore their own

psyches may get a great deal out of a true psychoanalytic therapy (lying

on the couch and everything). Using associative techniques and free

association some repressed memories may indeed come to the fore. But

they are very unreliable in content, even if they do accurately recreate

an emotional state one had had as a child over some traumatic event.

What we know is that unskilled practitioners with no real training in

psychodynamic therapy (soft derivative of psychoanalysis) can harm their

patients by evoking confusing and poorly understood feelings. When

patients are vulnerable and upset we know that any nudging at all from a

therapist can evoke a thought that is mistaken for a memory. This "false

memory," evoked by an over eager therapist was found to be common in

some of the famous trials of aleged cult sexual abuse perpetrators.

Recovering memories of abuse in children and youth became a rage by a

movement in Colorada a few years ago and which some were seriously

exploring ways to reach very troubled youth, many practiced holding

individuals to force memories to surface. Some practioneres of holding

therapy smothered or suffocated kids and they died. It was a real

scandle and criminal convictions were sought. All of us attempting to do

"deep" therapy are under very tight obligations not to lead or influence

or force an individual who may be subtlely or crudly rewarded for coming

up with a juicy memory. The drive to force such memories out of youth as

described by this girl would be considered malpractice and very harmful

by any professoinal group that I know.

"


Interesting ... perhaps someone should post this on the ST forum?  Bet the program dependent parents would appreciate knowing just how dangerous to their child's health and safety their "addiction" to programism is.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »