Is visit to WC necessary?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Dazed n Confused, Mar 20, 2010.

  1. Dazed n Confused

    Dazed n Confused New Member

    Ok, so as some of you know I posted a while back that my son was going to a WC in Hawaii for Severe Anxiety Social and General, Depression, Mood Disorder (Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED)). Well we used a transport co. on the 11th. He wasn't happy but he went. I haven't gotten to talk to him yet, I have spoken to his counselor and they said he is settling in well and being open to treatment. They did send me some pictures so I can atleast "see" that he made it.

    A couple of questions.....
    1. Since he is going to go on to a longer term Residential Treatment Center (RTC) (therapy school), is it necessary to attend the 2 day parent workshop. They said it is optional.........the Easy Child that we hired said that the experience is invaluable. She isn't the one paying for this though.

    2. Is it normal to not be able to talk to your child after a week? Is it usually 2 or 3 weeks?

    3.Back to the parent workshop it isn't until April 26/27th, at this point it will be over 6 weeks since he has been there. The Easy Child is hoping that he will only be at wilderness camp 8 weeks. I am sure there will be workshops that the longer treatment centers. What would you do?

    Money isn't falling off of trees, but I don't want my son to think I don't care if I don't attend a 2 day workshop. We will have airfare, hotel, car, etc. and this is money we can use to pay for his treatment.

    I guess I am feeling guilty, confused and just need to vent. On top of this I still have a 13yr old that needs to be treated fairly. UGH!!!!!!!
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I have a couple of questions.

    You say he is at this wilderness camp in HI and its for 8 weeks. Where will his long term Residential Treatment Center (RTC) be located? Will that be states side so it will be easier for you to visit? If so, I think I would be ok with not visiting the WC after 6 weeks when the length of the camp is only running 8 weeks. Are you supposed to go out there at the end of the WC program anyway for a graduation? Some are like that.
  3. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    My son attended a wilderness program last summer for 8 weeks. It was set up a little differently. We never talked to him the entire time he was there -- we only communicated through letters, although we talked to his therapist once a week, and we saw pictures of him every week on the program website. At the end of the 8 weeks, we went to the wilderness program for "transition" camp and spent the night with him in the wilderness. We got to talk with his therapist and learn about all our son had learned in his 8 weeks "in the woods." We then transported him ourselves to his longer-term Residential Treatment Center (RTC).

    Personally, I'm glad we went and spent the time in the wilderness. We did learn a lot about the program and about our son. We also go out to his Residential Treatment Center (RTC) every 10 weeks for parent workshops because we want to see him and we want to learn techniques to parent him better. All of it has been helpful. And yes, all of it has been expensive.
  4. Dazed n Confused

    Dazed n Confused New Member

    I will have to find out about a graduation, I can't remember what was said. I know that sounds bad but after our first call with the counselor and all the notes I took, I am over-whelmed. They said we would eventually be able to talk to him on the phone. We also get weekly pictures and should get letters twice a week. We also talk to his counselor once a week.

    We don't know where he will be going for his long term Residential Treatment Center (RTC) yet? Apparently it will depend on how well things go where he is at. The camp is anywhere from 6 to 10 weeks depending on how fast and how well the child does.

    We are also supposed to write an impact letter this weekend and send it off....I have started mine, but it is extremely difficult.
  5. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    I remember how hard the impact letter is to write. Good luck with it and all you have to do over the next several weeks. Deep breaths and take care of yourself.
  6. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Try to not let concerns about expense affect your decisions. Obviously you have to be able to afford it, but what I mean is - don't compare your sons with "I spent this much on X, therefore I have to match it dollar for dollar on Y."

    Your son at home needs to see that you will fight for ANY of your children. Make that clear to him, especially since he may be feeling his brother is on an expensive holiday camp.

    When/if you go to HI, does little brother come too? Although it is for big bro, there could still be a chance for you all (those remaining) to spend some quality relaxing time together as well.

    You needn't stay anywhere expensive, either. Make enquiries, see if there is someone at your church who can set up some sort of host family arrangement for you there, or maybe rent a cheap apartment for a week or two. We did that when we travelled to Greece about 20 years ago. Of course there were times when we had to stay in a (more expensive) hotel, but the bulk of our stay on Crete was in a cheaper apartment. We had to do our own cooking, but it was fun going out to buy our groceries each day. No washing machine so we used the grape stomp method with the kids in the bathtub - it was high summer and very hot, the kids loved to cool off by doing the washing.
    We were there for father in law, who was making his last trip to visit his friends from WWII, the ones who had saved his life and hid him while he was on the run (escaped POW). So we had a purpose to be there, it wasn't just a holiday. Our kids were really too young to appreciate it, we would have preferred to delay our trip until they could get some value from it. But I am glad we went, it was a very important time for us in many unexpected ways.

    It is not possible to treat both your kids the same. Treating both your kids fairly does NOT mean matching dollar for dollar. It means making sure that they know they are all loved equally.

    Remember the prodigal son parable? Think what the father said to the faithful son, who at first refused to come into the house. He said to him, "All I have is yours." In other words, "your place in my heart and as far as inheriting from me is secure."
    Spending money for a special purpose to help, or celebrate a more wayward child - that is entirely different and should never be seen as an indication you love one more than the other.

    Reassure your younger son and perhaps involve him in the decisions you have to make. I think that, above so much else, will help him see how much you trust him, you respect him and you love him. It will also help him feel involved and very much part of the family. At 13 he's not too young for this.