Raising any teenager can be challenging. For parents of teenage girls with mental and behavioral issues, these years can be downright harrowing. After all, no parents want to see their children struggle and suffer. Sometimes, traditional guidance counseling services at school aren’t enough for some teens. Even if your teen is attending a reputable Christian high school or private academy, there may come a day when your family has to make a difficult decision: does your teenage girl need the extra, around-the-clock support provided by an accredited therapeutic boarding school for girls?
Signs It’s Time to Consider a Christian Boarding School For Girls
In today’s society, it’s common to hear parents complain about their children going through rebellious phases or “just being teens,” but some of the behaviors associated with troubled teenagers are more likely cries for help. Even children who were raised in loving, church-going families can wind up heading on the wrong path.
Sending girls who have lost their way to boarding school is often the best way to get them back on the path to success. You should consider a therapeutic boarding school if:
- Your teen’s behavior has put her or others in danger.
- There have been significant changes from what used to be normal behavior such as stealing, drinking, aggressiveness, and letting grades slip.
- Defiant, disobedient, and disrespectful behavior is disrupting your family life.
- Your teen pushes boundaries and engages in acts of rebellion towards the rules of your household or your family’s faith.
- You’ve noticed your teen engaging in self-harm or heard her make threats of suicide.
- Your teen has run away from home.
- Counseling has not helped your teen make any noticeable progress.
One or two isolated incidents may be issues that you can deal with together as a family with the help of your church and the wider community. But if any of the above-listed problems become recurrent themes, it’s best to take more serious steps toward getting your child back on the right track.
Teens suffering from ongoing mental health conditions or high social-emotional needs can also benefit from attending a Christian boarding school. Girls with ADHD, mood disorders, substance abuse issues, and trauma-related mental health problems can all benefit substantially from the warm, caring environment and constant attention offered at therapeutic boarding schools.
The Benefits of Therapeutic Girls’ Boarding Schools
Most parents don’t know what it’s like to attend boarding school, which can make the decision as to whether or not to enroll their daughters difficult. If you’re still on the fence, consider the potential benefits to your child and family. Therapeutic Christian boarding schools provide:
A Warm, Caring Environment
At Christian boarding schools, troubled girls will be surrounded by caring mentors devoted not just to helping them succeed academically but also to restoring their faith. Removing a troubled teen from the environment that has triggered her behavioral problems can also make it easier to move forward and heal.
Structure and Schedules
Maintaining a well-structured schedule is essential for wayward teens. Unfortunately, behavioral issues and oppositional defiance at home make it difficult, if not impossible, to help girls stay on track. Life at a Christian boarding school will be well-structured and include myriad fun and engaging activities, personal mentorship, group therapy, and events that will keep students busy and stop them from making self-destructive choices.
Small Classes and Individualized Attention
At traditional schools, students learn in a class environment and are given few opportunities to receive individualized attention and care. Girls’ boarding schools are different. Students will be given the opportunity to work one-on-one with personal mentors, attend individual therapy, and get the help they need to thrive academically, socially, and spiritually.
A Family-Based Approach
Parents are often nervous about sending their teens to boarding schools because they think it will mean getting left out of the loop. In fact, good therapeutic boarding schools take a family-based approach that keeps parents informed and allows them to communicate easily with both their children and the instructors helping them.
Erasing Common Misconceptions About Boarding Schools for Girls
Even if they are aware of the potential benefits of sending teens to therapeutic boarding schools, parents often put off taking this essential step because they have fallen prey to certain common misconceptions. We’ll address some of the most harmful of them now.
- Children Attending Boarding School Will Live Without Adult Supervision
Parents sometimes imagine students living by themselves in dormitories without supervision, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. At girls’ boarding schools, all dorms and residents are supervised by trained staff and adults to support student safety, enforce rules and regulations, and assist with any issues, day or night.
- Christian Boarding Schools Are Overly Strict and Old-Fashioned
While there may be some Christian boarding schools for girls that fit this description, that’s certainly not the case for every school. Embracing Christ’s heart and empowering students spiritually is more important today than adopting rigid, fear-based practices of the pre-modern world.
Shelterwood Academy takes a thoroughly unique approach to help troubled teens and is the first boarding school to offer the Brain Balance® Program on campus. Rather than forcing students to conform to rigid structures, this program helps to strengthen the areas of students’ brains that are involved with regulating mood and emotion, making it easier for girls to make healthy decisions for themselves.
- Only Neglectful Parents Send Their Children to Boarding Schools
This misconception could not be further from the truth. Parents who send their children to therapeutic boarding schools are doing so because it’s in their girls’ best interests. Boarding school parents can and should stay deeply involved in students’ lives. It takes a village to keep teens safe, sound, and healthily engaged, 24-7, today.
The Opportunity of a Lifetime
Here at Shelterwood Academy, we believe that all teens should have the opportunity to learn, grow, and realize their full potential. Getting off to a difficult start in life doesn’t have to mean heading down a self-destructive path. Our therapeutic boarding school helps girls struggling with mental health and behavioral issues learn how to prosper academically, form healthy relationships with their peers, and embrace their spirituality to get through difficult times, all in a fun and caring environment.
Want to learn more? Contact us today to learn more about Shelterwood Academy.