parent of troubled teen

The Most Excruciatingly Painful Thing I Have Ever Experienced

As a single mother I thought there was no way things could get worse for my family than the divorce. For year it had been up to me to raise my children alone.  Then when I was faced with the realization that I was losing my son to an emotional darkness I couldn't understand, I needed help that was beyond my ability to provide for him at home.

Traditional therapy offered little relief since it was just an hour each week if I could get him there, then between appointments he was still alone, isolating himself from the world.  He was diagnosed with depression and was self-medicating with anything he could find.  I found a residential treatment center for teens specializing in emotional issues and substance abuse and was so relieved.

I made a trip to visit the facility and was so impressed with everything I saw and heard and enrolled my son the next month.  At first my family members were happy that he was getting help, but then they became my biggest adversary when they found negative content on the internet about the residential treatment center my son was at.

They didn't want to hear anything from me about how I researched every option, called every official, checked every license, even visited the facility unannounced and had them answer and explain to my satisfaction EVERY SINGLE NEGATIVE comment I too had found on the Internet.  I was so hurt that they, my parents and brothers and sisters would just think I would send my son anywhere without a thought.  It was my son.

I had chosen what I thought was best after weeks of research, phone calls, and in-person visits – and they having done NOTHING but read a few negative comments were judging me as an unfit parent.

To make a long story short, the treatment went well and he got the help he needed from 24hour attention and therapy.  I have my son back, but the damage done between my family and I is still healing.  How I wish there had been someone like you people to help expose the truth of those people on the internet who wanted to prevent me from getting help for my son.

You're absolutely right that those websites expose themselves as frauds rather than concerned activists when they all claim that “there are no good treatment options”, schools, residential treatment centers, programs, therapists, or organization for helping teens in trouble.  They say, teens are just teens and teens do drugs, mutilate their bodies and their minds – that's just what they do.  I call bullsh*t.

I think those so called activists are really sitting in their own parent's basement, smoking weed, playing x-box, living a parasitic life of a drugged out teen – or worse, a drugged out 20 something, who to make themselves feel better about their useless lives take on a “cause” to help others preserve the pathetic lifestyle they enjoy funded by their parents or the government.  Yeah, maybe I'm being harsh, but they pulled no punches turning my family against me and treatment I knew would help – why should I against them?  I'll bet I'm light years closer to the truth about them than they are about me.

Thanks for your efforts to help people like me.  It was the loneliest and most excruciatingly painful thing I have ever done, and I did it alone.

Keep getting the truth out there, someone is counting on you.

- Sandra Thomas, Santa Barbara, CA

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