Does My Teen Need Residential Treatment

Are you searching for help for your troubled teen? How will you know when it’s escalated beyond typical teenage behavior?

Deciding on residential treatment or a therapeutic boarding school for a troubled teen is probably one of the biggest decisions a parent has to make.

PexelTeenBedroomNever doubt, you are your child’s advocate. No one knows your child better than you do.

Although they might be acting out of character at this moment, deep down you know your son or daughter is in there.

Are you facing:

Entitled, spoiled teenager
Screen addiction (cell-phone, video gaming, social media)
Digital self-harm
-Depression, anxiety, stress
-School refusal, skipping classes
Underachieving (smart, but failing classes)
-Anger, rage, destructive (especially if you remove their phone)
-Withdrawn, changing friends
-Disrupted sleeping patterns
-Defiance, breaking curfew, disrespect to family rules
Vaping, drug use, drinking

If you’re experiencing a few of these behavior issues, it’s likely you’re feeling frustrated and like your home is a warzone.

It’s likely you’ve tried local therapy and even a school counselor and your teen has shut them out. Possibly outpatient treatment failed, the school setting isn’t working, you even tried a short-term hospital stay that was unsuccessful. You have exhausted your resources at home.

Why Residential Treatment Could Help Your Troubled Teen

A therapeutic program is specifically set-up to stop the downward spiral of a teen’s behavior and change the course to an upward one.

When a teen is removed from the stressors and triggers of home – not to mention their peer influences and devices (social media) – with a slowed down manageable pace – and placed into an environment with staff, activities (enrichment programs) and therapy designed to encourage change – (build self-worth) – the opportunity for the kind of true and deep change required to turn your teen’s life around can finally start to happen.

A consistent and positive environment replaces the toxic environment they’re leaving. They won’t have access to drugs or alcohol – or their social media or devices. The peer influences are now cut-off. If they’ve been struggling academically, often this new and unique environment is where they will begin to thrive again. In many cases, they will be able to not only catch up but surpass where they were in school since they are now able to focus on their studies in a healthy environment.

If there was family discord, the destructive cycles with siblings and/or parents are now stopped and communication is deliberately slowed down to include mediated conversations, letter exchanges, and intermittent visits.

This completely changes the dynamic and stops parents and teens from engaging in the same ineffective communication patterns used before. It’s as if a pause button is pushed and teens eventually are able to move away from their rigid perspectives and look at their relationships from a new and clear vantage point.

They begin to gain perspective on life events that may have created trauma, or on their contribution to the “mess” their lives have become. They learn about their own unique emotional and cognitive make up and their problems or limitations as a starting point for the journey forward.

Choosing the Right Residential Treatment for My Teen

The internet is a wonderful educational tool or it can be a place where we can find misinformation. P.U.R.E.™ was founded for these exact reasons, to help you choose the therapeutic boarding school for your individual teenager.

A simple online search for “therapeutic boarding schools” yields over 3 million results! It’s difficult to find safe places to send troubled teens.

You will stumble on fearmongering sites as well as reviews that can be worrisome, and it will cause you to pause. It’s important to become a critical thinking parent while investigating these schools and programs.

Understanding the terminology is key to starting your process. Knowing the difference (which is very slight) between a therapeutic boarding school and a residential treatment center. Are you interested in a ranch setting? What enrichment programs would benefit your teen? Do you understand the myths of wilderness programs?

Are you now thinking, will my teen hate me forever if I make this decision? Your teen will likely be scared of the new situation and may also promise to “do better at home” if you’ve discussed the possibility of going to a boarding school – or  most parents threaten it (which you never should do). In our experience, your child will likely grow from fear and anger they already have — to love and understanding that this decision was made with their best interests in mind.

We help you find the right residential treatment program for your troubled teen and your individualized needs. We don’t believe in primitive or punitive facilities.

Read: 5 Benefits of Therapeutic Boarding Schools for Troubled Teens.

Read: Where Can I Send My Troubled Teen.

Read: What is the Goal of Boarding Schools for Troubled Teens?

Read: Why Residential Treatment is Effective.


For more information, contact us for a free consultation to learn more about safe residential treatment for your teen and family.



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Many parents are at their wit’s end with the challenges of raising teenagers. If you are considering residential therapy, contact us for a free consultation.

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