Conduct disorder

Discussion in 'Failure to Thrive' started by sail24, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. sail24

    sail24 New Member

    My 16 year old son was just diagnosed with conduct disorder. He lies, steals and doesn't take responsibility. He's also very bright, charming and creative. He has many gifts but until he's able to fit into society, we're certain we won't see his potential. We need to find a therapeutic boarding school that is highly structured and highly organized. This diagnosis definitely causes us to have limited choices. Do you have some suggestions? I'm trying to keep this very factual, but on the inside we're devastated. This is the diagnosis we feared the most.
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  2. Sam3

    Sam3 Active Member

    Hi. I’m pretty sure lying stealing and avoiding responsibility are what get many kids into therapeutic boarding school in the first place. Many have had run ins with the law.

    I’m sorry I don’t have any specific recommendations but I’m wondering whether youve considered a shorter term wilderness program. It’s often just an interim step and many kids end up going straight to TBS from there but I’ve met parents who thought wilderness was more helpful than TBS and others who regretted their choice of TBS, so I think it most be carefully chosen.

    Often adolescent therapists and drug counselors have a favorite (and I’ve even heard rumors of kickbacks for referrals). I would ask for the names of alumni parents who could weigh in.
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  3. sail24

    sail24 New Member

    He was in a alternative boarding school for 5 months. He was just asked to leave ( 5 days ago) because of his lying, stealing and lack of ownership. It was like a wilderness program that included schooling as well. 3 classes a day, then the rest of the day was out in the wilderness mountain biking, rock climbing, snowboarding. Pretty great program. He had a job, responsibilities, group meetings and expectations were placed on him. They just couldn't get him to accept responsibility and they decided it wasn't a good fit for their school and they weren't going to be able to help him. The program gave him too much free time. Now we need an environment without the freedom until he earns some.

    So right now, my child isn't in school because he can't go to our local public school. He couldn't handle 3 classes, no possible way he'll succeed with 6 classes. He needs containment, schooling right now is secondary.
  4. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet


    My son was diagnosed with conduct disorder at age 15 also and that is how I found this forum - by googling the diagnosis. Thank God I found this forum!

    But as others have said here and I tend to agree, it's not a real diagnosis but more or less a placeholder until they figure out what the real diagnosis is.

    My son's true diagnosis is anxiety and depression which led to self medicating with marijuana which led to other drugs which led to addiction which led to 7 years of hell and trying to figure out what to do.

    I think you are doing the best you can and I understand you don't want him to come home because he likely will go back to the same behaviors.

    My son is now 22 1/2 so finally maturing (and in a drug program that finally is taking root) but when they are your son's age it's very hard to know what to do really.

    I just wanted to offer my support.
  5. sail24

    sail24 New Member

    I truly appreciate your support. I've spent the last 3 days searching for a school to send my son to. So many are just money making machines. One administrator didn't want to hear about my child, he did all the talking. When I asked him for references, he said I'd have to apply and be accepted before he'd provide any. I told him I didn't know if I wanted to apply unless I spoke to other parents. He said no. Big red flags. Then as a salesman would after a potential buyer walks, he reached out to give me one reference. Too late dude, my son isn't for sale.
  6. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Do be careful. There are loose regulations in boarding schools residential centers and wilderness camps.i have heard of hideous abuse in all three settings, even deaths in some wilderness camps. Absolutely visit first, ask for parent references, check online to see if the particular facility was ever reported and make sure they do not use corporal punishment or humiliation as discipline. There was one residential school in Maine (forgot the is on YouTube) which was shut down for cruelty but many kids suffered first.

    There is nothing wrong with a good healthy program to help kids. Just be sure it's on the up and up. And this is just my opinion...I never heard of Wilderness Camps curing anyone long term and some of the stuff I heard... Scary. Again this is just from what I read or heard. I did have a foster child in residential treatment and saw even young kids restrained and carried by security guars to isolation rooms and the screaming I still can remember. I would never have chosen this place for my own kid. In foster care they go where the social worker says.

    Do good research. This could be a perfect solution until he is 18 in the right place. Just be careful.

    Love and light!
  7. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    My son was also diagnosed with CD at the age of 15. He is a very good lier a bad thief and a drug addict who is facing multiple charges.

    He is on his way to a long term in patient rehab and behaviour modification program which her is Canada is government accredited (many are not). We didn’t have the 12,000 plus a month to pay privately so we waited for a funded bed and that took over a year.

    It is an excellent program. Do look for accreditation and more openness about parental reviews.

    You are not alone.