Family Secrets

Error Saving Reaction

Family Secrets

It was hidden in the rafters, the bedrooms, and throughout the house. Chad's (not his real name) grandparents were finding pornography everywhere. Unusual behavior for a 16-year-old boy? Perhaps. But the couple had a bad feeling about the boy's behavior. Those feelings were confirmed when they began to find stolen underwear he'd hidden away. 
When they confronted him, Chad admitted he had a problem. He told the couple he had sexually groped his younger brother on at least two occasions. His grandparents sought help from a therapist. But after 18 months of outpatient therapy they were still worried about Chad's progress and behaviors. 
The family turned to Heather Green for help. Green is the Clinical Director at Oxbow Academy, a therapeutic boarding school specifically for teen boys with sexual misconduct issues. 
"Chad's story is not that unique," she explains. "We're seeing a lot of teens who are struggling with things like pornography, child molestation and fetishism." 
According to Heather, what is unusual is what families and communities are doing about it. "The trend is that we as a society are becoming more aware of it," she says. "Society is no longer minimizing it."
She says the irony is that as families, communities and sometimes courts take a "get tough" stance on teens with troubling sexual dependencies, children are being subjected to increasingly more sexual images at younger ages. 
"Our kids are becoming very de-sensitized to sexuality and the boundaries that need to be associated with it," Green observes. 
Located in Wales, Utah, the heart of the western United States, Oxbow is one of only a handful of facilities with treatment programs geared exclusively to teenaged boys. Eleven students are currently enrolled. Some have been ordered there by various community agencies. Most are privately enrolled by concerned families looking for help and hope for their sons. 
"We take a holistic approach when it comes to therapy," Heather explains. "We're not just treating the sexual misconduct issues," she says. "These boys still have emotional, physical and academic needs." 
All of which are addressed at Oxbow. While therapy is the primary concern, students also complete academic course work with one on one help from certified teachers. 
Therapy is also individually tailored. "A student that has pornography issues is going to receive different treatment than a student with hands-on problems." 
She explains, "Oxbow offers a form of therapy that is not afraid to deal directly with the issue in an environment that is safe and 24/7 treatment oriented."
Meanwhile, Chad is making progress. Since his enrollment at Oxbow, he's admitted to molesting his brother several times over a period of years. Though his grandparents were heartbroken to hear that news, they are encouraged over the fact Chad has finally disclosed his ugly secret. He has no contact with his brother but Green says he is very remorseful and committed to changing his behavior. 
She says parents should listen to their "gut" if they have concerns about a child. "Believe any children in the house that might come forward and say, 'Johnny did this or that to me,'" she urges. "We see so many times when parents just don't want to believe it's true." 
She cautions parents not to ignore the problem. "Get the child in and have them evaluated. Go so someone that specializes in treating kids with sexual misconduct issues."
She says without intervention the problems will only escalate. "There may still be legal consequences to your child's actions, but the risk is greater if you don't get help." 
Green urges parents not to despair. "There are lots of good studies that show kids with this type of therapy at this age are probably the least likely to re-offend. I get Christmas cards all the time from students who say, 'I'm doing great. Life is good.' It's just amazing the hope and change you see from when they first enter the program to the time they leave."
Views: 387
0
0
0
Author: Regular Articles
Jennifer Jones is a free lance writer and former news producer for the CBS affiliate in Salt Lake City. She can be reached at
jenniferjones5@msn.com
Tell a friend
Average rating:
(0 votes)
Average rating from Reviews:
(0 votes)

Write a review

Reviews

Zacks Industry Outlook Highlights: Freeport-McMoRan, Newmont Mining, Golden Star Resources, Randgold Resources and Kinross Gold

Zacks Industry Outlook Highlights: Freeport-McMoRan, Newmont Mining, Golden Star Resources, Randgold Resources and Kinross Gold Read More

Gold Mining Stock Outlook - Sept. 2017

Gold Mining Stock Outlook - Sept. 2017 Read More

Why Freeport-McMoran (FCX) Stock Might be a Great Pick

Freeport-McMoran (FCX) is seeing solid earnings estimate revision activity, and is a great company from a Zacks Industry Rank perspective. Read More

Friend of slain Georgia Tech student: 'If Scout was more gender-conforming, would it have been different?'

Scout Schultz, a Georgia Tech student, was shot by campus police on Saturday night, and a protest two days later led to arrests. In the aftermath of those events, Yahoo Lifestyle talked to a friend... Read More

How to Make Healthy Leftover Turkey Tacos

These tacos get a healthy makeover by using turkey as the main lean protein. It all comes together with some beans, avocado, and a little cheese. Watch the video to learn how to make this easy... Read More

Little People, Big World's Audrey Roloff Just Gave Birth to Her First Child

It's a girl! Read More

Mel Brooks: ‘Blazing Saddles’ Would Never Be Made in Today’s ‘Stupidly Politically Correct’ Culture

“Blazing Saddles” may be a groundbreaking comedy, but director Mel Brooks doesn’t think Hollywood would make the iconic Western parody in this current “stupidly politically correct” climate. The... Read More

Box Office: 'Kingsman: The Golden Circle' Unseats 'It' as 'Lego Ninjago' Disappoints

Kingsman: The Golden Circle is the new ruler of the box office. The sequel from Fox is expected to earn $39 million this weekend from 4,003 locations. That’s slightly below where tracking had... Read More

Bradley Cooper-Lady Gaga’s ‘Star Is Born’ Moves to May 2018

Warner Bros.’ “A Star Is Born” remake starring Stefani Germanotta (Lady Gaga) and Bradley Cooper, who is also directing, is moving up its release to May 18, 2018. The pic was originally set to open... Read More

White House officials defend Trump, say athletes 'can do free speech on their own time'

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin defended Trump’s call for NFL players who kneel during the national anthem to be suspended or fired. “It’s not about free speech,” Mnucin said Sunday. “They can do... Read More

In wake of U.N. speech, Kim calls Trump a ‘dotard.’ Trump fires back at ‘madman.’

President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have unleashed personal attacks on one another after the U.S. commander in chief’s speech at the United Nations. “Kim Jong Un of North Korea,... Read More

As Russia probe turns to fake Facebook ads, Trump follows with a tweet

President Trump continued his efforts to belittle accusations of Russian meddling in the 2016 election on Friday, turning to the latest set of charges, involving targeted political ads placed on... Read More

Reluctant champion: How Nadia Murad has become the international face of Yazidi suffering – and resilience

Weeks earlier, Nadia Murad had been ripped from her village by Islamic State (ISIS) fighters who murdered her family and took her captive. Along with other young Yazidi women, she was transported... Read More

Readers write: The work of downsizing, evidence of climate change, hopeful coverage on famine

Regarding the Aug. 21 Monitor Daily story “Home prices, and a thought shift, give ‘small living’ a boost”: Interesting concept. My friend has done it, downsizing and living in a tiny apartment.... Read More

Time for the world to step up on Rohingya issue, Aung San Suu Kyi’s astounding hypocrisy, Irma’s destruction in Britain’s Caribbean islands, The US should stop saber rattling, On the Nadal-Federer comeback

“It is high time the world made an all-out effort to stop the ongoing pogrom against Myanmar’s minority Rohingya...,” writes Mohammad Amjad Hossain. “The pogrom resembles those crimes perpetrated... Read More