Wilderness Therapy?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Bpd parent, Mar 16, 2013.

  1. Bpd parent

    Bpd parent New Member

    I am brand new to this site but have a 15 year history of parenting a difficult child. Without going into our long, trying history, we are at a point where out-of-home placement is imminent and urgently necessary. After discussions with several TBS and educational consultants, wilderness therapy is almost universally suggested as a first step. I have read many stories of abuses and deaths of students in the past, but it seems the industry has been making strides to increase safety, they have been tracking outcomes, and many have clinical staff with impressive CVs. With the help of an educational consultant we have narrowed it down to two wilderness programs that seem to have good track records and which have a specific therapist experienced with her primary diagnosis of Borderline (BPD). I would like to get input from anyone who has had experience with these specific programs; "ABC" and "XYZ". If it is not appropriate to discuss this topic in an open forum, please pm me.
    Lasted edited by : Mar 17, 2013
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there. You can certainly post here. I don't know much about wilderness camps. I do feel that, from what I've read of other's experiences, that wilderness camp is more of a short-term solution than something that changes the person forever. Have you thought about residential treatment? Exactly what do you hope to get out of wilderness camp? How old is your child? Does Borderline (BPD) mean bipolar disorder or borderline personality disorder? I do know a bit about both of those diagnosis. first hand.

    Sorry I can't help more and I hope I don't sound too negative. It can be slow on weekends and I wanted to make sure you received at least one response :) Welcome to the board.
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Please edit out the names of the camps from your post - we don't name "names" around here... board policy.
    This CAN be discussed via PM etc. - and more generically, the whole "what to look for in wilderness camps" and sharing of experiences, is also fine.
  4. buddy

    buddy New Member

    You can put the general area or state of interest and ask if people know of programs near there. Make sure your pm is open for messages.
    Welcome! So very sorry you are at this point.

    Aren't there some programs that are kind of a combo? Maybe a ranch like residential /school/therapeutic facility?

    ( I think dr Phil show did a recent how to decide type of show. They list resources on the site too)
  5. There are combo programs, but it is important to realize that the child develops during the treatment and using the same program for the early stage and later stages might not be in the interest of the child.

    Second based on my experience with a local residential treatment center, which were praised by the local authorities and parents but was raided and closed by state authorities a wilderness program isn't necessary safe because they have not lost children in their care yet.

    Remember years back that they showed "Brat Camp". It looked safe and the program had been in operation for many years. When the sheriff closed the program in 2009 after a 16 year old boys died in the program, he called the operation reckless after the investigation had been done. There had been changes in the management and setup to save costs and it led to the terrible tragedy.

    I have no dictionary over wilderness and residential programs but I am so happy that I am not in your shoes because the business is changing fast with program opening and closing all the time. It is impossible to give advice. I can only pray that the consultant you use does not get a referral fee for the programs children are sent to so the option you choose will be in the interest of your child and not someone’s wallet.

    We came that close doing what you are looking into and we consider us very lucky having avoided that.
  6. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Borderline (BPD) parent,

    Hello and welcome to the board. I am one of the moderators here on the General Board and I took the liberty of editing your post. We do not use proper names of hospitals, doctors, schools, programs, etc. Rather, we use the private message (pm) function to address specific programs, etc.

    I urge our membership to contact Borderline (BPD) parent via the pm system if you want the specific names of the two programs being looked at for his/her difficult child. Naturally, wilderness programs in general can be discussed opening on the board.

    Borderline (BPD) parent, again I welcome you to our little slice of understanding and compassion for difficult child-weary parents.