For those who did Residential Treatment Center (RTC), are your kids still upset??? Even years later?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by judi, Dec 31, 2006.

  1. judi

    judi Active Member

    Hi Catwoman - I'm sorry that you aren't able to have a relationship with your son. This is basically where we are too. And yes, I am to blame for everything wrong in his life too.
  2. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Judi, I don't think difficult child has ever said he resented going to egbs. I know when he came home he acted as if they were the "bad guys" which replaced his parents as the bad guys. He went to a living skills school and they were the bad guys. See a pattern? Any authority that imposes their rules is viewed as the bad guys.
    difficult child may well hate me. He probably does on some level. I have always accepted that I would be the bad guy and he wouldn't have the same "warm fuzzies" for me that some children have for their mother. I don't care. He is alive, he is functioning, he is growing up. This in itself is a huge success. He isn't cured, he isn't a go getter but he isn't institutionalized, he isn't doing behaviors that are embarassing or shameful and he isn't raging out of control. If that result is because I was a bad guy and sent him to egbs or put him on medications or forced him to meet the goals to get what he wanted- so be it.
    I didn't ask for my son's forgiveness, now will I. He was failing as a human being on many fronts and there were no other "nicer" options.
    Tell him to get over himself. You have a laundry list of things you don't want to forgive him for but you will because love does forgive and love does keep hope alive.
    Give him a reality check. 6 wks in prison of war camps doesn't give anyone an excuse to be a negligent parent or a dislikeable human being,let alone a lovely Residential Treatment Center (RTC). He will have to come up with a better reason for being such a little butthead.
  3. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    [ QUOTE ]
    I feel the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) did not help ant but it did contain him and prevent him from self destructing. he was there for almoast two yrs.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I agree for Rob, too. Just like ant, Rob was *scarily* out of control during his heyday. He could have gotten in so much worse trouble but he had a lot of supports in place---the wraparound folks and his wonderful PO were instrumental in getting Rob placed. And once they finally bit the bullet and accepted that he was in serious trouble, they didn't waste any time swooping in and containing him.

    To be honest, Judi, even if Rob is mad as hell, I don't care. It kept him alive during those awful years (Residential Treatment Center (RTC) for one year, group home for 1 year). I was willing to give up my relationship with him altogether if it kept him alive and everyone safe and it did accomplish that. Thank God. After the hell we went through, any relationship we have after that is sheer bonus.

    I love the Maya Angelou saying I have in my signature. Many people quote variations of it and it's true. Hold onto this thought: you did the best you could with what you knew and when you knew more you did better. Hopefully someday your son will realize that and if he doesn't, be proud that you kept him alive DESPITE the path he was headed. That is a very good thing.

  4. OTE

    OTE Guest

    I'm not in this situation yet. But I'll throw out a thought.... sort of a point LMS made. This anger, resentment, whatever is at least partially based on the fact that he has not yet accepted that he has a problem/ issue/ illness whatever. He still believes that he did nothing, is not ill, etc. Thus he believes that you did something horrible in sending him away. Mine says that I put these labels on him and that his drug use is just a choice he's making which I don't like (he's not an addict, he does not have any mental health or sub abuse problem). I don't believe mine will accept that I did anything right until he accepts that he has a problem.
  5. judi

    judi Active Member

    Fran - I had to laugh. Butthead is the exact word that his girlfriend uses to describe him. That and immature. Thanks.

    Suz - thanks - that's pretty much the way that I feel too. husband and I did what we had to do to keep him safe from himself. Even though he is not working or doing much of anything productive, he isnt' self-destructing either. He hasn't been arrested in over a year now and has no charges pending. Of course, it would be nice if he got a job and supported baby but that may or may not happen.

    Ote - Mine feels the same way: the problem is mine, not his. And to some extent, I do feel that way - I'm the one that wants a relationship, not him. THanks.
  6. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    Odd for me to reply, but I suspect he does resent whatever measures we tried to do, whether it be counseling, Residential Treatment Center (RTC)'s, etc. It's the nature of the beast at that age.

    *I* regret it. It was a huge waste of money. There is the old saying, "You can't lead a horse to water if he doesn't want to drink." I am hopeful that there are some stories that had a positive result, but I'm not really aware of too many. It doesn't leave you with a whole lot of options when you're in crisis.

    In the end, I wouldn't worry about it too much. Life has a way of moving on regardless of the decisions you make. Your son will realize this as he ages and has his own children. You do the best you think was possible at the time.

  7. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    They point the finger and blame everyone else. When they're pointing, they don't realize three fingers are pointing back at them. My difficult child is so full of hate and anger toward us, but he dictated the terms of our relationship. It's sad...we did what we felt was best. As you did. What more can you do? You try everything. Don't second guess yourself, everything you did was to try to help him.-Alyssa
  8. judi

    judi Active Member

    Abbey - I do believe you are right. At the point of crisis, you do what you have to do. It's not usually a pretty thing. If things are going well, most parents don't even have to consider Residential Treatment Center (RTC). I resent the amount of money that we had to pay for his "behavior." I don't say it much, but I resent too that he thinks we have ruined his life, when in reality at his age (21), he has the world before him.

    Nomad - thanks for your thoughts. I too agree that the kids with mental illness have the tendency to have life-long problems. Now, that it has been determined that my son is not mentally ill, but rather choosing his own behaviors, personally, I see that as a poor prognosis too. Is he to go through life continually blaming his mother for all the ills of his world? I smile as I write this because it even sounds silly! As to the substance abuse issues, I don't even think my son is smoking pot anymore. He doesn't like the out of control feeling that he gets.

    UpAllNight - You are so right. When these kids can't accept the responsibility for their own actions, they do blame everyone else and usually its their parents.
  9. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    In our case it was a total waste. Not only did they not help him, they encouraged him to make claims of abuse against me that were untrue. It got him a good deal of attention and he has continued it to this day because someone is always ready and willing to believe the poor poor baby. I think this will become less and less of a problem as he gets older and runs out of friends.

    That being said, in our case I don't know that we could have done anything differently. He was totally out of control and a constant physical danger to us. Not to mention the material things that he destroyed and the anguish he caused. We had run out of resources, were not capable of handling him, and he had to go.

    So, would I do it again? Yes, probably. I would want to be better prepared for his accusations, but we really had no choice. There were lot's of ugly awful events in M's life, and I have to say in all honesty as his mother that I was probably if not responsible, at least culpable in many of them. He's gone, and we have moved on. If he chooses to live his life looking back in anger that's on him, not on me. I hope he will get his act together one day and realize that life is what you make of it, and it's up to him whether he makes it happy or sad. I gave him all of the tools I had to become a happy well adjusted person, and maybe one day he'll use them. But I can't let him drag me into his drama anymore. Life's too short to be miserable.
  10. judi

    judi Active Member

    Witz - I agree that we give these kids what tools we can and the way they use them is up to them. Our easy child son who is 26, 5 years older than difficult child says repeatedly how perfect we were and thanks us. So...who knows.
  11. Tiggs

    Tiggs New Member

    I am the kid who was sent to Residential Treatment Center (RTC).

    I still have resentment towards my parents because they did not check it out (in person) before sending me there and did not (do not) believe I was abused there. I have resentment and I will not forgive them for lying to me saying I would be there for 6 months and was there for 18 months instead. I still don't believe my mom when she says she is going to do something.

    As I get older and look back, a lot of my issues were *typical teen* issues that my parents didn't want to deal with. But all I want is my mom to believe what happened to me and an apology for not checking out the place better (admitting she was wrong).

    I am doing great - I will be 30 this year, I am still plugging through school (will graduate from PSU World Campus in Dec of 08), live on my own, do network administration for a living. But it doesn't take away the pain of not being believed or admitting that she was wrong.
  12. Sue C

    Sue C Active Member


    I'm not sure how this fits in, but it popped into my head this morning. One of my sister's has the BIGGEST difficult child (she posted here many many years ago). He was never sent to an Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Heck, not even to counseling as I recall. He was bitter and angry against my sister and her husband and always blamed them for all his problems. Anyway, he literally disowned them and has not spoken to them or the rest of the extended family, either, for a very long time. I am sure he never will. He did not even show up for his grandpa's (my dad) funeral 2-1/2 years ago. He is now in his late 30's.

    I guess my point is that our children can resent us for sending them to Residential Treatment Center (RTC), but they can also resent us for not. They can choose any excuse they want to for not forgiving us. They are difficult child's!

    p.s. Angela missed her grandpa's (my husband's dad) funeral because she was in drug rehab. She said she will never forgive us for that. But here she is 27 years old, and we have a good relationship. I don't know if she's forgiven us or not, but that's OK because we did what we felt was best for her at the time.

  13. lovemysons

    lovemysons Well-Known Member

    [ QUOTE ]
    I guess my point is that our children can resent us for sending them to Residential Treatment Center (RTC), but they can also resent us for not. They can choose any excuse they want to for not forgiving us. They are difficult child's!

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Okay Sue, as far as I'm concerned you get the brilliant quote of the day award!!! :bravo:

    Could not have said it better.
  14. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    MY difficult child 1 has never forgiven me for trying to get her help. I didn't send her to Residential Treatment Center (RTC) didn't know about this option back then (she is 31 years old now). I didn't get alot of support on MH issues from husband until difficult child 1 was in her teens as he was not around much to witness difficult child 1's behaviors prior to that. ( He was a consultant who traveled alot). In addition,difficult child 1 was an extremely beautiful girl. People had a hard time beliving that such exquisite beauty could be flawed. After she turned 18 she became more and more scary and abusive. I finally had to put her up in an apartment of her own because she was so vioent and had hurt my PCs, myself and my cat. ( I often wonder how this affected difficult child 2 and how much of his behaviors and attitudes were learned from her.) She would not concider any therapist who suggested she had a problem. She wanted to put the blame on others for her actions. She is in therapy now for 3 years because of a violent outburst that almost destroyed her life. She still off blames others for her own actions. She is not violent anymore to my knowledge although I doubt her husband would tell me if she were.

    My difficult child 2 walked away from an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) in May for no reason other than the rush of adventure. He holds no anger toward husband and I. He says he knows that we have always acted in his best intrest. It is sad that he knows this but we still have not been able to help him.

    I agree with the poster who said we do what we do for our difficult child's out of love and responsibility. If we have to be the "bad guy" in order to help then that is our fate. We accept that because we cannot change it. I do not believe there is a parent alive who ever sent their child away to a therapudic setteng out of malice.
    Only out of hope for a better way of life for their child and their family. -RM
  15. ediwiz

    ediwiz Member

    My difficult child does not resent the fact that we sent her to an Residential Treatment Center (RTC). In fact, from her perspective, it was the best thing for her. She did gain a lot from the experience. None of us thought it was long enough, but I had a SW who told me if it was longer than a year we would have to TPR. I was NOT about to do that. Of course I later found out that it was a flat out lie. I don't really understand her reasoning since my insurance was paying for it, no state or county funds were used, in fact I asked the judge to court order it so that my insurance would pay. :hammer:

    She still talks about the place with loving memories, LOL. I did all of the research, questioned not only the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) but others to get a feel for the place. They were very honest with their success rate and very honest with their expectations. I compared other Residential Treatment Center (RTC)'s in our area and then gave my recommendation (well really my only choice) to the SW. We were lucky to have a judge involved so we were allowed to let our expectations known.

    She is jealous that easy child got to live at home and she didn't, but doesn't really dwell on it. My pat answer has always been, "If I didn't love you and care about you and your future I wouldn't care what happened to you instead of fighting tooth and nail on your behalf." She has seen me go nose to nose with "professionals" regarding her treatment and care.

    She still uses some of the techniques they taught her for getting her anxiety under control. She is not completely healthy, but she is making great strides and I am really proud of the accomplishments she is making. (baby steps) She is in college and although she has some grandious ideas of what she wants to do when she completes her BA and her masters (this is her current goal) she is maturing slowly. As long as she stays on her medications we do really well. I'm not sure she will ever actually hold down a job, but we are supportive of her dreams. She could surprise us all. I sincerely hope she does.

  16. judi

    judi Active Member

    Tiggs - I am so sorry for your experience. It was exactly why hubby and I drove there before we agreed our son would be placed there and he was only there six weeks. There are no allegations of abuse on our son's part - just that he felt that he didn't belong there. However, at the time he was 15, had been hospitalized twice for out of control behavior including making holes in the walls of our house, breaking things in the house, stealing from us, running away, school refusal, cutting and mutilating himself, etc. In looking back on it, I would still do the same thing.

    Sue C. - thanks. I agree that we did what we could do in the face of a very resistant difficult child (and that's putting it mildly). My son wants little to do with us which is fine. What hurts so much is that he wants nothing to do with his son! He was raised with two parents who spent time and attention on/with him. He grew up in a very loving environment and now his son will grow up without a father - unless difficult child changes.

    Rejected Mom - thanks also. This is also the way I feel, that we did the best we could. We tried many, many counselors, medications, doctors, schools, jails, hospitals and we still weren't making any progress. Sending him to Residential Treatment Center (RTC) was not taken lightly.

    ediwiz - maybe in time, my son will thank me...however, I'm not holding my breath! lol
  17. AngelsRus

    AngelsRus New Member


    My son went to Residential Treatment Center (RTC) when he was 13 an was there for a year. He was so out of control and was kicked out of public school and was close to being arrested.

    We had no choice. I have tried to talk to him about it and he doesn't say much. I believe it is way of punishing me and allowing me to think the worst.

    We were very involved, with him every step of the way and this was a Christian based facility. He got into a lot of fights when he was there but I also believe 100% that it did help.

    In order to do that to a child, you have to love them more than yourself. You have to be willing to accept the pain that will come with sending them there and be strong and not be manipulated.

    You did the right thing, don't let him manipulate you now and try to make you feel guilty. His own behavior got him there, not yours.

    Hugs and Prayers,
    Angels R Us
  18. judi

    judi Active Member

    Hi Angels and thank you.
  19. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    [ QUOTE ]

    I have always accepted that I would be the bad guy and he wouldn't have the same "warm fuzzies" for me that some children have for their mother.

    He is alive, he is functioning, he is growing up.

    If that result is because I was a bad guy and sent him to egbs or put him on medications or forced him to meet the goals to get what he wanted- so be it.

    He was failing as a human being on many fronts and there were no other "nicer" options.

    Tell him to get over himself.

    He will have to come up with a better reason for being such a little butthead.

    [/ QUOTE ]


    I think Fran's sentiments here are good things for us all to remember ~ along with Suz' Maya Angelou quote.

    None of us intentionally raised our children so that the day would come when we could put them into treatment.

    Every one of us did the best she knew to do.

    Many of us (myself included) would never use the services of a treatment center again.

    For the poster who still harbors resentment toward their mother ~ remember what part you played in forcing her to make that choice.

    For the record, I had one child who went through numerous treatments ~ and turned out to have been misdiagnosed. Her illness was physiologically based.

    But by the time she was correctly diagnosed, it was too late for our family.

    This child says she learned many things in treatment that have helped her as she has gone on to meet the challenges attending her illness.

    The other child resents us because we did NOT put him into treatment.

    At the time everyone was instructing parents to send our children to these (very expensive) treatment centers, the other thing they were telling us was that our children would die without treatment.

    I agree with Fran. The person who has gone through treatment and continues to harbor resentment is playing Manipulation in a big way.

    Fran's response, and Suz' Maya quote, are the things that will get us through this time with our senses of self intact.

    I am sorry this is happening to you, and to your family.