River View – Another Teen Help Program? Red Flag

It has been 12 years since my daughter endured the awful experiences at Carolina Springs Academy, an offspring of WWASPS – which is the umbrella of many other teen help programs.

When I first posted our story of Deception, Misrepresentation and Fraud it was almost immediately I was sued by them in a an attempt to silence me – and get my story removed. What they didn’t expect was for me to fight back.

After defeating them in a jury trial of their peers in Salt Lake City, Utah, (let’s face it) no one condones child abuse, my story is still online.

Since then, thankfully, Carolina Springs Academy attempted a name change to Magnolia Christian Academy, and shortly after that closed their doors.   However WWASPS still continues in several other branches such as Red River Academy in Louisiana, Cross Creek in Utah, Horizon’s Academy in Utah and the newly River View also in La Verkin Utah.

Though I did win that trial – WWASPS and their sales reps continue to tell parents I am disgruntled parent – or I own or manage other teen help programs.  I don’t.  I help educate parents so what happened to me doesn’t happen to them.

After they lost their appeal to attempt to say the jury made a mistake, I went through a time of awful Internet defamation.  It seem that a group of people decided to slander and libel me online – and it got to a point where it effected my life, my family and my organization that had literally helped thousands of families with at-risk teens.  It left me with no option but to sue the people/person we could identify through the Internet for Internet defamation and invasion of privacy.

With that lawsuit, I again, in a jury trial, won over $11.3M jury verdict for damage done to me.  During depositions it was discovered that WWASPS was indirectly involved with this person and actually referred her to the attorneys she was using.  And at one point WWASPS was receiving the bills for her legal fees.

This trial was back in 2006.  Today in 2012, I hold no grudges over this person – I actually only wish her well.  We all have moved on in our lives.  My only grudge is with the people that harmed my daughter and that, in my opinion, continue to defraud and possibly harm (at least emotionally) families and kids today.

There are many excellent programs in our country.  I don’t tell parents where to go – I just hope they do their due diligence.  If your gut is telling you there is something not right – chances are very good – your gut is right!

Be an educated parent – you will make a better decision for your teen.

Helpful tips for finding teen help programs – click here.

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Behavioral Modification Programs – Specialty Boarding Schools – Teen Help Programs

What exactly is a parent looking for when their once happy bouncing toddler has turned into an out-of-control teenager?

Second semester.  Some teens have had enough. They don’t want to go to school anymore.  They believe they know it all.  It is easier to get a GED, after all, some of their so-called friend are doing it!

As much as you are trying to ignore or just say it is a phase, you notice your teen is withdrawing from the family, failing in school, smell alcohol, maybe even marijuana, cigarettes, and overall have become a child you no longer recognize with a personality that is defiant and totally disrespectful the the family boundaries – what do you do?

Most parents try local therapy – which is a great first step, but when happens when therapy doesn’t work?  You can’t be afraid to take that next step!  A parent in a denial only harms your teenager.  Don’t be held hostage in your home by your teen’s behavior.

Sending a child to a residential program/school is a major decision. It is not one to be taken lightly or to be decided on overnight.

Usually a teen’s behavior has been slowly escalating and a parent knows that deep down things are not getting better.  As much as you hope and pray that things will change, this is only typical teen behavior, sometimes it just isn’t.

With drug use and substance abuse rising – more dangerous and deadly ingredients being used, such as spice and inhalants, parents have reason to be concerned.  It isn’t your marijuana of generations prior – it is so much worse and in many cases – addictive and deadly.

If you have reached your wit’s end and now surfing the Internet for help, remember, anyone can build a website.  Anyone can put up nice pictures and create great content.  You need to do your due diligence.

Years ago I struggled with my own teenager.  I was at my wit’s end.  I didn’t realize what a big business this “teen help industry” was.  Yes, my child needed help, but what we received was anything but that.  My story is a cautionary tale – not one to scare you into not using a program, however on the contrary, you have to get your child help, but you have to do your research in getting them the right help.

You can do it without spending thousands!

Here are some quick tips:

  • Your child is not for sale, try to avoid those marketing arms selling you a list of programs that are not in the best interest of your child’s individual needs.
  • Always speak with an owner or director – Someone that has a vested in your teen’s recovery.  Their reputation is on the line.
  • Wilderness and other short term programs are usually nothing more than a band-aid that will fall off as quickly as the program lasted.  They are expensive camping trips and in most cases the Wilderness program will tell you at about 4 weeks that your teen will need to continue on to a longer term program.  What? Yes, now you go back to the research board and worse than that, your teen will be deflated when he finds out he/she isn’t coming home in 6-9 weeks as they were lead to believe – and they will be starting all over again with a new therapist – new schedule – and new setting.  Don’t get caught up in this “shuffle.”  Start and finish with the same school/program.
  • The average stay should be about 6-9-12 months, depending on your teen.  Anything less is probably non-effective.  Anything more, you may be creating abandonment issues in my opinion.
  • Do you really need an Educational Consultant?  Absolutely not.  You are the parent and no one knows your teen better than you do – with a few tips, you will be able to make some sound choices.

For more helpful hint and tips, please contact www.HelpYourTeens.com for a free consultation. After the ordeal I went through, I created this advocacy organization to help educate parents on finding safe and quality programs.

Join me on Facebook  and follow me on Twitter for more information and educational articles on parenting today’s teenagers.

Red River Academy – Horizon Academy – A Parent’s True Story 2012

My story has been told and validated on many news networks.

Mention my name to any “sales rep” of Red River Academy or affiliate of their programs (see the listings here) and you will find out fast that I am not their favorite person.  They will send you to some very ugly websites about me, but will neglect to tell you I not only defeated them in a jury trial and in the appellate court, I also won an $11.3M jury verdict for damages of Internet defamation of all those ugly sites they are sending you to.  The funny thing about the Internet, it is the world’s largest tattoo machine, and like a tattoo – some things are hard to get removed – and trust me, I have tried.  However I have been legally vindicated.  And God knows they have tried to bury me – virtually and literally – but here we are going into 2012 – and my story is still going strong.  Read on….

As a victim of the WWASPS organization – I am often called or receive many emails about our (my daughter and I) experiences with them.  Obviously not pleasant.  Though I am happy to say the program she was at, Carolina Springs Academy, which attempted to go through a name change to Magnolia Christian Academy (or School) depending on the day you Googled it, is finally closed – it has been rumored some of the staff is now at their affiliate program – Red River Academy and/or Horizon Academy.

Let me be clear for legal purposes – these are rumors – but if I were placing my child in program, I personally wouldn’t take any chances – and furthermore, Red River Academy is clearly named in the current lawsuit which is extremely disturbing with allegations of fraud, abuse, neglect and much more – (click here) that is current.

So when the “sales rep” tells you that “Sue Scheff” is a disgruntled parent – I say – YES, I was – you put my daughter in a box for 17 hours, she was mentally and emotionally abused – food and sleep deprived – I was complete defrauded – and she also missed out on 6 months of education.  None of which I had signed up for.  Grant it, this was 10 years ago – a lot has changed – but those original owners haven’t – so in my humble opinion – I wouldn’t trust any of their programs with my pets….. BTW: I am the only parent to have defeated WWASPS in a jury trial.  Most of the other (many) lawsuits have settled out of court with silence agreements.  I don’t have one, which is why I can still share my story – which is why I get slimed online – which is why their sales reps have all sorts of stories about me – including “the jury made a mistake” – neglecting to tell you I won the appellate court too.  No one condones child abuse – period.

I have been called a crusader (and not in a flattering way) though I take it that way.  I have made it my mission to find the better programs and schools, since I do know what it is like to be at your wit’s end.  I know what parents need help. I am not against residential therapy, which brings us to many  of my stalkers that were formally abused in programs that believe all programs should be closed down.  That is being extreme – they are not a parent trying to save their child’s life and future.

I will share with you that there are more safe and quality programs than there are bad ones – it is just about doing your homework and research.  Today you are more fortunate than I was – you have more access to information and you can learn from my mistakes and  my knowledge.

Please – take 10 minutes to read my story and see the list of programs that are and were once affiliated with Carolina Springs Academy – and from there, you make your own choices for your child.

I had one parent that almost went to Red River Academy that actually said the sales rep said they could have their teen “extracted” within a few hours?  Extracted?  Really – is your child a tooth?  Please don’t get rushed into a quick decision – this is a major emotional and financial decision.

My organization is Parents’ Universal Resource Experts – and no matter what those “sales reps” or the Internet fiction – I don’t own, operate or manage any schools or programs!  We are about educating parents when they are looking for help for their at risk teen…. Don’t get scammed when you are at your wit’s end.

Oh – and when these “sales reps” send out these defamatory links about me – another FACT they neglect to tell you is I won the landmark case for Internet Defamation that awarded me $11.3M in damages for what was said about me online!  Lies and twisted facts!  Here is my recent appearance on Anderson Cooper.

This is strictly my opinion from my own experiences and you are free to make your own decisions…..

Boot Camps for Troubled Teens: Think Twice

Boot Camps are not always the best choice.

It never ceases to amaze me that parents are still asking for boot camps or scared straight programs.  Although they may make an initial effect on your teen, it is rarely, if ever, long lasting.  They are usually considered a band-aid to a wound that will soon be re-opened.

Many teens that are acting out in a negative way, are usually crying out for help.  Lack of self-esteem, negative peer group and simply feel like they are not important to anyone.

Boot camps and scared straight programs are about breaking your child down – aren’t they already there?  In many cases these types of programs can build more anger and resentment which is usually targeted at the parent that sent them there.

Finding a program that helps determine where these negative impulses are coming from and helping your teen work through them can be the best way to get back on a positive road.

Are you ready to get your teen the help they may need?  Visit www.helpyourteens.com for resources.

Behaviorial Modification Programs – Teen Help -Parent Frustration

Coming to the conclusion you are in need of residential treatment for your teen is not an easy admission for any parent.  It is a point of realization that you can no longer help them and by denying them the opportunity of an intervention, you may be enabling them into a dark future.

As my previous Blog post stated, finding the right placement for your teen is a tedious and time consuming job, however extremely necessary.  This is a major financial and emotional step and as a parent, you need to take the reins and be part of this process.


Some thoughts and tips (from my own experiences) are the following:

  • Beware of all these toll free numbers that go to places unknown – are marketing arms for a variety of programs and usually don’t have your child’s best interest, rather they are suggesting programs or schools that will “pay” for the referral.
  • With this thought- always speak with the owner or the director.  Someone that has a vested interest in your child’s recovery since it will reflect on their reputation.  It is always beneficial, if you are working with a local therapist, to have them speak with the program you are considering to find out if it is a good fit.  Remember, if your therapist has recommended residential – this is a step you should take, but sadly there are some therapists that don’t recommend residential therapy since it usually means they are losing a client.
  • Are you determined to find a “religious” based program or school?  Convinced that the bible will guide your teen back to you?  Maybe – but remember, “religious based” programs rarely have to meet the same regulations that normal schools and programs do.  A perfect example is where my daughter attended (that abused her and harmed her, while defrauding me): It was called Carolina Springs Academy.  The changed their name to Magnolia Christian School. Why?  They no longer have to report to DSS.  Read a recent news article.
  • Are you finding all these horror stories online about these types of programs? Remember, you need to take it from the source.  Many of them are disgruntled teens that didn’t want to go to a program and obviously attending didn’t help them, however the majority is quite different.  To sooth your mind, remember the Internet is full of fact and fiction, sometimes it is different to decipher.  However looking into public records for legitimate lawsuits filed against programs can give you the real answers.  My name is either famous or infamous – but when you look at my past, my court records prove that my stories are accurate and I actually won an $11.3M jury verdict for the slime that was written about me online.  As the jury spoke loudly in the case with WWASPS – I defeated them to keep my story online – www.aparentstruestory.com – since it was told truthfully as I and many others experienced.

For more information on residential therapy and hints visit www.helpyourteens.com.

I will have more tips to come….. If you are looking for help ASAP – feel free to contact me.

Read more tips.

Teen Help: Parents’ Universal Resource Experts (P.U.R.E.)

With today’s society, kids have access to many different substances that can be addictive and damaging. If you suspect your child is using drugs or drinking alcohol, please seek help for them as soon as possible. Drug testing is helpful, but not always accurate.  Teen Drug use and Teen Drinking may escalate to addiction.

We get calls constantly, that a child is only smoking pot. Unfortunately in most cases, marijuana can lead to more severe drugs, and marijuana is considered an illegal drug. Smoking marijuana is damaging to the child’s body, brain and behavior. Even though marijuana is not considered a narcotic, most teens are very hooked on it. Many teens that are on prescribed medications such as Ritalin, Adderall, Strattera, Concerta, Zoloft, Prozac etc. are more at risk when mixing these medications with street drugs. It is critical you speak with your child about this and learn all the side effects.  Educating your child on the potential harm may help them to understand the dangers involved in mixing prescription drugs with street drugs. Awareness is the first step to understanding.

Alcohol is not any different with today’s teens. Like adults, some teens use the substances to escape their problems; however they don’t realize that it is not an escape but rather a deep dark hole. Some teens use substances to “fit in” with the rest of their peers – teen peer pressure. This is when a child really needs to know that they don’t need to “fit in” if it means hurting themselves. Using drug and alcohol is harming them. Especially if a teen is taking prescribed medication (refer to the above paragraph) teen drinking can be harmful. The combination can bring out the worse in a person. Communicating with your teen, as difficult as it can be, is one of the best tools we have.  Even if you think they are not listening, we hope eventually they will hear you.

If your teen is experimenting with this, please step in and get proper help through local resources. If it has extended into an addiction, it is probably time for a Residential Placement. If you feel your child is only experimenting, it is wise to start precautions early. An informed parent is an educated parent.  This can be your life jacket when and if you need the proper intervention.  Always be prepared, it can save you from rash decisions later.

A teen that is just starting to experiment with substance use or starting to become difficult; a solid short term self growth program may be very beneficial for them.  However keep in mind, if this behavior has been escalating over a length of time, the short term program may only serve as a temporary band-aid.

Drugs and Alcoholic usage is definitely a sign that your child needs help. Teen Drug Addiction and Teen Drinking is a serious problem in today’s society; if you suspect your child is using substances, especially if they are on prescribed medications, start seeking local help.  If the local resources become exhausted, and you are still experiencing difficulties, it may be time for the next step; Therapeutic Boarding School or Residential Treatment Center.

If you feel your teen is in need of further Boarding School, Military School or Program Options, please complete our Information Request Form.

Teen Help, Troubled Teens, Struggling Teens: Back to School

Listening to parents on a daily basis struggle with what is going on with their teens today can be stressful and pull at your heartstrings.  Many times it has nothing to do with the parenting, it is today’s society and the harsh pressures of peer influence.

In the same respect, you can’t be a parent in denial – you can’t assume since your teen’s friend is making bad choices that your teen that is following that behavior is not part of the issue.  Remember, it is your teen making the choice to smoke that joint – or drink that beer.  Yes, it is peer pressure, but a teen has free will and they can say no.

Need help?  Is your teen spiraling out of control?  Check out www.helpyourteens.com – Stop being a parent in denial and give your teen a second chance at a positive future.