Should I say something to the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) about...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by DavidH, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. DavidH

    DavidH Guest

    Had a great home visit took Justin back in while ago this eve.

    He is off his medications now... wow can I tell a difference ... we shall see

    However.. question is he brought up a concern / problem he is having with a counselor... I think it is the same one that told justin about the other counselor not even going to be a mom or be able to talk to him after discharge... 98% sure (I did not want to ask justin if so only because I did not want to bring that issue up again)

    He is saying this guy is clearly there only for his job and does not care about any of the boys, justin lost more points in the last week with him on duty than he ever has since his arrival at Residential Treatment Center (RTC), justin said one night this guy was frustrated that a boy was snoring and he went over to the boy and held the Radio to his ear to wake him up so he would stop snoring.

    Justin said he can nto talk to other boys about it, becuase that is agaisnt the rules to talk about staff behind the staff back, he also said they can not bring it up in group meetings as it is against the rules, and he said he does not feel our family theripist will do anything about it. He asked if I would say something to the guy.. I told him no.. it is not my place to talk directly to the counselors about a problem, I have a chain of command to follow.

    He brought up other little things this guy does that makes it clear he does not give a hoot, he also said that he puts on a great front in front of the parents (me and others) on family days... but when no one is around he is very different

    now my issue is .. do I bring this up to our family counsler... Justin is growin very tired of Residential Treatment Center (RTC).. ( well duh I expect that) he feels he is learned a ton and ready to prove it to me.. so I am half thinking he is very sensitive to anything not perfect....

    I am back and forth on writing a email to the family theripist out there and asking her to look into this.. ??
  2. LoneStar14

    LoneStar14 New Member

    I would say something to someone. This guy could (if he hasn't already) set someone back in their progress. To me, it sounds like he's an ugly incident waiting to happen. There are probably other kids/parents in the same situation you are in and afraid to say something. I feel it needs to be put on record on his behavior. How can anyone think its okay to wake up someone like that for just snoring (never mind in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC)).
  3. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    It's a tough call. The reality is that there is at least one counselor like that at every Residential Treatment Center (RTC). They are either burned out or just want the pay check, as small as it is. The good thing about these types is that they help our kids cope with some of the realities when they get back home -- not everyone is nurturing, some people will go out of their way to make them miserable.

    Odds are that staff is aware of this guy's attitude but it is hard to find people who can deal with kids with behavorial problems. Turnover is high. So, they might just be accepting of his behavior.

    I will say that I would not be happy if the kids couldn't confront staff about what they perceive to be unfair treatment. This just doesn't seem right to me. I know my daughter brought up some staff's treatment in group. She wasn't too happy because they usually could explain exactly why something happened and what her role in the treatment was.

    You could bring it up but I doubt anything will be done. Justin needs to know that you'll stand up for him if it is needed. Maybe the best way to handle this is ask him directly if he really needs you to step up or does he think he can cope with this or do something on his own?

    David, I know you feel he is close to being ready to come home and I think you're right. Some things to consider now are what have they taught him regarding coping skills? What are some things that Justin believes he can do to not retreat into the same old behaviors once he gets home and the structure is no longer there? It really is important that he be able to answer these. Justin needs to be very clear in his own mind that peer pressure won't get him into troulbe, that he knows how to say no, that he will think before he does something for someone or with someone.

    It really is good to hear how well he is doing. I hope he keeps up the good work. If he's typical, he may regress when it is close to the time of his coming home -- it is scary to go from a very controlled environment to freedom no matter how much you want to go home. If this happens, do remember it is only a bump in the road and doesn't mean he's not ready to come home, just scared. The important things to consider is what has he learned during his stay there, what do you honestly think he will bring home and use.
  4. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    Yes, report it. Write a letter to the supervisor of the unit. You are your difficult child's advocate. I would think group counceling sessions are not allowed to be staff bashing sessions becasue that would cause unsettlement on the unit so that is why they are not allowed to talk about it. However, there has to be a process to getting these concerns heard.

    When my difficult child was at a Residential Treatment Center (RTC), we figured out we didn't like the weekend overnight staff. Here he was a few days away from home learning to open up to strangers with a problem (he hates any attention and letting someone know what he was going through was a hard step to overcome) and when he got up in the middle of the night looking for someone to talk to because he was having an anxiety moment, he was told to go back to bed. Staff refused to help him through his anxiety. I am not saying to keep him up for a long time, but certainly show some willingness to listen for atleast a minute or two. Kindly explaining that they will record what he is going through and let the regular staff know. Let him know that he needs his sleep and someone will spend more time with him on this in the morning. I told the lady who ordered him back to bed that she handled it wrong, they are there to help and that soon into the treatment was not the time to turn him away regardless of the time. Another time he was so upset that he refused whatever is given to relax. I was so proud of him. I told staff that they were trying to mask his problem at that moment and he picked up on it. If they would have spoken with him first and gained his confidence, he would have agreed to accept the medication. The way they were offering it to him made him feel they were just trying to shut him up and he did not trust their motives. He needed to know that they were understanding and wanted to help.

    Residential Treatment Center (RTC) staff are not perfect - they are human also. They must see tons of kids and with each one needing a different approach have to be talented in meeting the needs. It is important that we voice our concerns when our child isn't treated in the way we think best. True, they are the professionals and they can counter our concerns with their reasons which may or may not change our point of view. This lets them know that we are not blindly leaving them in control and we want to remain active in the course. We still know our child better than they do, most parents have good insincts and must ask questions and voice concerns. How else will we also learn? If the professionals understand where we are coming from, it is easier for them to explain to us where they are coming from.

    Point out in your letter about how this staff member affected the point system. Does every child have lower points on his charge? Talk to your difficult child to determine how rules and consequences were perceived differently when this person was on duty. Let the supervisor know - all staff are different, however, the rules and consequences should be very consistent 24/7. Too confusing for the patients to try to figure out what the changes are each time there is a new staff member.

    If things were so frustrating that difficult child brought it to your attention, it is important to try to get his concerns heard.