Info on teen intervention Needed

A very good friend of mine has a problem.

I was over at his house today where I was to meet his son.

We had a nice talk about gardening & lizards, out on the grounds around the house. There was no one else there.

The mom had told me she wasn`t around much, since she was caring for her ill brother. I`m very friendly with the mom & she`s a very very nice person. Their daughter comes over to my house & I can leave her there by herself.

I trust her to no end. She`s going off to college back east in the fall.

The older brother is in his second year at San Francisco U.

He also is a personal friend & always welcome at our house.

Now we come to the dad.

He`s a doctor & one of the nicest person anyone could ever meet.

So what`s the problem.

They live in fear of their lives.

The15 year old son whom I visited & had a good time with today, is terrorizing them.

I have had to do repairs at their house because of his violence, although there often was a reason/excuse for how the damage happened.

When I left their house to come back home, I saw the dad coming off the beach._I blew the horn & waved. Then I thought I should turn around, so I went up the highway, made a U-turn & came back._He got into my car & very glad I`d come back._I told him I`d just come from his house._I told him his son seemed to be doing much better._He told me different._In a breaking voice he told me about being threatened with death, & having a hard time dealing with his ICU patients at the hospital along with this familial weight over him._I asked about the mom`s brother during our conversation, but he seemed puzzled._He explained that she did not feel safe in the house alone with her son, while he, (the dad) was away at work. He asked me to forgive his wife`s “white lie” & that she`d only told me that to hide her (shame?)She wasn`t at the house, because she was terrified._It`s been about four/five months since she`s been “taking care of her brother”_They are at their wit`s end & don`t know what to do._They are thinking of having him picked up & brought to a juvenile camp or some kind of intervention style boot camp._Does anyone have any experience with this sort of situation._Any info will be extremely appreciated._My friends are at the end of their power to continue living some semblance of a stable healthy life._They are desperate._Please help me help my friends._Thank you.

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    • RiaD on May 7, 2010 at 2:48 am

    my nephew was a huge problem… had major rage issues (he was the product of a drunken evening with shrooms & was sent back & forth between parents, grandparents)

    after going to several psychologists/psychiatrists and no viable results.

    his dad was finally at wits end and sent him to one of those survival camps up in the mountains. he was gone for, i think, six months…. but gha! when he returned he was a changed person…. a human who realized that his choices were what put him in the situations he found himself.

    the dad did serious research into these camps, found one with a good track record, caring counselors and talked to parents who had sent their kids there.

    my heart goes out to your friends….

    i hope they find a solution & are strong enough to follow through with it.

    • TMC on May 7, 2010 at 5:39 am

    While he might be embarrassed to ask a colleague for references, he needs to get some professional help for the boy. There are schools, boarding schools, that are well equipped to deal with extreme behavior issues and are well recommended. He needs to do it before some one gets hurt.  

  1. its very difficult to deal with but he parents need to get some help, its hard to find the right kind, they need to do their homework so to speak, references from people not just… wildcard. I cringe when I hear boot camp but … well, theres other treatment centers that maybe dont have that connotation.

    The kid really needs to be evaluated…. and from the sound of it, possibly even in patient… if he needs meds. But age 15…er, wow …  a lot of psyche diagnoses by definition have to be 16 or older. If its not so much a psychiatric situation, but more behavioral, then its a mildly different approach.

    Theres others here who are more knowledgeable than me.

    In any case, keep in mind that theres ALWAYS more to the story, and you most likely are only hearing the tip of the iceberg from the parents. They need friends to be supportive but encourage them strongly to seek professional counsel.

    Youre a good friend, KH.

  2. Now and then, you hear about such a situation, where a teen becomes completely unmanageable and intimidating to all around him/her.

    Although, I have not thoroughly read the comments here, it seems that everyone here has truly responded with thoughtful possibilities and remedies, so I don’t have a lot to add, but I’ll say a few things.

    1.  Ruling out whether it is caused by drugs or not would be the first thing.

    2.  Definitely having him evaluated by a well-recommended psychologist or psychiatrist.  If there are no drugs involved, it is possible the kid suffers bi-polar disease (on the increase in this country), which is manageable.  The other possibility is that he is suffering some chemical imbalance, which would also need to be determined.

    3.  If it’s none of the above, then it could be that the kid suffers a low self-esteem and has a deep-rooted psychological problem that has NOT been dealt with.  

    Does the kid just get violent for seemingly no reason at all — display anger all of a sudden?  It would be hard to have a notion without knowing the circumstances of when or how his “trigger” goes off, in other words, the correlation of his behavior to whatever may have been going on at the moment.

    I sure hope that the family will be able to find the cause and ultimate resolution soon for the sake of all.

    Thank you for caring, Knuck.  

  3. stat, and let the professional do their thing, they are going to end up calling the police on him, or worse, someone is going to get hurt. Everyone is already being hurt every day, and that is just piling up into one big hurt coming down the pike.

    No parent should be too afraid to be at home with their child.

    No child should be that angry if he’s in a caring home.

    Angry, violent kids and puberty is a bad bad mix.

    I hope they make a move forward soon. I know it’s hard.

  4. settings for more than three decades, I can recall far too many cases of similar situations continuing until a family member(s) ends up severely injured, or worse yet, dead.  In fact, I can think of at least two individuals who were on my caseload who murdered their mothers.

    In some cases, we have had clients whose parents or other family members are quite well known. In quite a few, but far from all cases, members of the client’s family are so burned out by the time their loved one is admitted into my program that they have completely given up and moved on with their lives.  

    I don’t pretend to have definitive answers, but am convinced that continuing to do nothing carries  considerable risk, far greatear than I’d care to take. It would seem that, at a minimum, a comprehensive physical and psychological assessment is very much needed.  

    Although testing can reveal a treasure trove of useful information, such an evaluation will be much more accurate if the family is willing to provide complete, unflinching and truthful information about their loved one’s behavior in various settings and circumstances.  This can be a very difficult experience for family members.  

    If this young man escalates to the point of inflicting serious harm, or worse, the matter could well be turned over to outside authorities, with the parents having little control over what follows. There are so many potential causes that it would seem that only a complete evaluation could provide answers, and hopefully, some effective treatments.  Until this occurs, it does not sound like any lasting improvement is likely.

    I hope there is a happy ending to this story.

    Please take care, Knucklehead!

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