It’s really too bad that when you are going through a crisis you often have to make crucial decisions. It’s the worst time to have to do this because, well, you are going through a crisis…..who thinks clearly at this time??
For us, the decision to send Dan to a residential program for OCD during the summer almost seemed like a no-brainer at the time. Just to clarify: Dan was technically not an inpatient. He entered the program voluntarily and could leave if he wanted to.
Anyway, back to the no-brainer part. The residential program Dan was accepted into is world-renowned, highly regarded, and intensive. They assured us Dan would improve enough to successfully return to college that Fall, which was his goal. Dan was not only willing to go, he wanted to go. He couldn’t wait to go! So why on earth wouldn’t we send him, especially when that was what all of the experts recommended?
In retrospect, I think we should have found a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) which is basically the same as a residential program aside from one very important fact: you go home at night.
In regard to the residential program, I really thought that as Dan’s parents, our relationship with the staff would be one of collaboration. You know, all of us working together to help Dan. But that was not the case. Dan was over eighteen and considered an adult. The fact that he was a nineteen year old suffering from severe OCD and not really in the best condition to be making life-changing decisions did not seem to matter. Not only were we not consulted when decisions were being made, we were often not even informed of these decisions. So it was fine for us to pay for Dan’s treatment; we just couldn’t know anything about it. And when we did press for information, we were often regarded as pushy, overbearing parents.
So this is something to be aware of. The bottom line is these residential programs know their stuff in regard to OCD. But we know our son. And it is the whole person who needs to be treated. Why not work together?
Has anyone out there had experience with residential programs? What are your thoughts?