Relapse, Positive Peer Pressure And Know When To Let Go

My son has been home from residential treatment three weeks and now it is difficult to imagine our house without him. Having two teenage boys keeps me busy and on my toes. I like to think of myself as a vigilant mother, therefore I like to know what my kids are doing and where they are at all times. My excuse to them is  “What if there was an earthquake?”.  Living in California there is always an earthquake looming.Earthquakes are not always caused by mother nature, sometimes we have human produced earthquakes in our everyday lives. We had a couple over the Fourth of July weekend one that I really do not want to go into detail about since it was a relapse and devastating at the time. I think it was the relapse that I knew was looming out there and we had to get over it. I am just hoping that he has learned from his mistake and will make better choices next time. We seem to be getting back on track.

Consequences Of Drug Abuse In Teens

I will admit I was really disappointed when it happened and it brought up a lot of negative memories. Needless to say I was very mad and spent 24 hours ranting to my son, that he had not even been home for 3 weeks and we already were talking to ——. He is safe, has consequences and luckily they are not real bad, he will also pay the expenses incurred by his over indulgence. Luckily he still has his job and has the means to pay us back. I am so thankful for this job. But one thing I have learned from residential treatment and its philosophy, is not to dwell on the past, you have to move on. Give them the consequences stick to them and move on. Hopefully he learned from his mistake and this will not be a recurring event.  What is the different about this time versus the past? He has accepted the consequences, has not yelled at us and told us how unreasonable we are and he did not run away. I think he knows he made a big mistake and a scary one at that. He also does not appear to be proud of it.

Theraputic Boarding School Treatment Can Help

Moving on to teen son #2 whom is struggling with having to do school work during the summer. There is definitely some entitlement issues going on here. He hates math and is in summer school retaking Algebra because he failed his last semester. He thought taking courses during the summer meant you did not have to do the work, because it is a “summer school class”.  Almost half way through the summer session, I find out he is not doing the work and flunking summer school! This week – privileges are removed no phone, computer or skateboard. It was pretty ugly for about 24 hours, he was determined not to give in and I was not going to budge. Then his older brother (the one home from residential treatment) steps in. He offered to talk to him; I think he empathized with what he was going through and told me he did not want to see him miss his “high school years” (maybe he thought we were going to send him to an RTC). The boys really have not had a close relationship since my son returned home so I did not think much would come out of it. I guess after two years of a therapeutic boarding school, one learns how to help their peers when they are struggling. He told me it was important that he get support from someone that was not an authority figure. All I can say  he managed to turn the situation around, he has now studied with his father and is trying to pass some of the tests so that he can get his privileges back. I know he can do it, this is the third time he has taken the class!! I have learned that once again I had to step aside and let fait take its course. Even though we have our struggles I think the positive is still outweighing the negatives. What makes me the happiest is that we are a family working together. Maybe not the most functional, but we are trying.

If you would like to know more about therapeutic boarding school and other residential programs for troubled teens, please contact a family counselor at Zion Educational Systems for guidance.  To get started click the button below!

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