To All Parents/Guardians Of Prospective Students,
My name is Sam, and I am a Diamond Ranch Academy alum. I graduated the program at Diamond Ranch Academy in July of 2016. Diamond Ranch is the ideal place for your child to receive help with various issues that they may be experiencing. It is a safe environment that is conducive to recovery from destructive behavior. In this unsolicited letter that I have written on my own accord, I aim to illustrate my experience at Diamond Ranch as well as inform you about how DRA has helped me become a better individual. DRA can help your child repair their life and help you repair your family.
If I had to guess at this point in time, I would guess that you as a parent or guardian are scared and overwhelmed. You are probably unsure if residential treatment is the right choice for your child. You may be afraid that sending your child to treatment will make them so angry that they will never speak to you again. You may feel as if you are admitting failure. You are probably at the end of your emotional rope. I would guess that you feel like you don’t have anywhere else to turn. I can tell you that my parents felt the same way, and I can assure you that the experts at Diamond Ranch know what they are doing and have the skills and experience that are required to get your child’s life back on track.
My parents sent me to Diamond Ranch Academy as a result of my poor behavior. My behavioral issues developed into habits, and these habits began to ruin my life. My problems ranged from depression to pathological lying, from anxiety to running away from home, From failure in school to extreme defiance. This is only naming a few. I also suffered from teenage retirement. While at DRA, I took care of these issues and am now successful in all aspects of my life.
If you would have met me during the first 4 months of my stay, you would have met an angry and disrespectful kid that was actively engaging in destructive patterns that resulted from negative self-concept and apathy. If you would have spoken with me during that time, you would have likely heard the words “I never want to speak to my parents again. I don’t want anything to do with them” along with some choice expletives. Now, I live with my parents, and we have a great relationship of understanding, love, and respect.
One thing people must understand is that no one can, and no one has the right to change an individual. This is no different at Diamond Ranch. To become a better individual, one must want to get help. One must feel compelled to change and better their life. I am guessing that desire is not yet present in your child. But there is good news: Even if your child does not have these desires now, one of DRA’s roles is to help instill these. They find specific incentives that are meaningful to your child, and these incentives give the staff at Diamond Ranch leverage that they can use to motivate and redirect the student. For example; Student A aspires to be a professional basketball player when he is older. Practicing the sport is something that Student A enjoys. However, enjoyment is just one part of the picture. Practicing basketball is also a powerful coping skill that this hypothetical student can use to help regulate his emotions. In this scenario, Student A is scheduled to be in the 11th grade, but is behind in 2 classes and is in 10th grade curriculum in those classes. In a conversation concerning the student’s academic situation, a dialogue similar to this one may take place: Student A: “Why should I even try?” DRA: “Well, if you get ahead in school, and you’re interested, we could probably work something out where we can let you go to the gym for an hour every day. You would also have to show that you can keep up with the work in the Character Curriculum regularly. Completing this work will show us that you are mature enough to have this privilege.” Now Student A has to catch up in school and demonstrate that he can keep up and go above and beyond if he wants to go to the gym during the school day. However, no case is the same. Not all privileges are appropriate for all students. As students advance through the levels in the Character Curriculum the naturally demonstrate increased maturity, which in turn builds trust with the staff. Diamond Ranch will work with your child to find incentives that work for them. That may be a special item sent from home or a privilege on campus. Whatever it is, it gives your student something to work for.
At DRA, if a student completes what is expected of them each week, they are eligible for a benefit on Saturday. This can include anything and everything from going to the movie theatres to going to play pickleball and eat pizza. The student’s assigned group may go on a hike and then get ice cream. The possibilities are endless.
I have become a better version of myself because I took heed to the teachings of Diamond Ranch. I am currently a senior in High School with a 3.4 GPA. I am involved in many extracurricular activities. I volunteer at the soup kitchen with my church on a regular basis. I am happy and self-assured. I now make realistic and attainable goals for myself. I am also looking at going out-of-country for college.
Diamond Ranch has helped me to turn my life around. I am so thankful for all the lessons that they teach and for the kind, caring, and generous people that work there. I wholeheartedly believe that DRA can help your family.