When our son was completing wilderness therapy, we hadn’t planned on an aftercare program for him because we really didn’t know it was needed. However, a psychiatrist he had been seeing recommended that we look into it, so we agreed and eventually narrowed the choices down to three. Our son talked to all three of them and he really connected with Josh, who explained that Red Mountain would offer him both structure and independence. That turned out to be true and it was also what made the program work for all of us. The phases that the students pass through at RMS mean a lot to them and the whole process is a “rite of passage.”
We really liked the sense of community at RMS. Many of the staff members at Red Mountain know from experience what the students are going through. They are living testimonials who have “walked the talk.” Everyone there also comes across as very professional, from Stacey, who manages admissions, to Josh and Maureen, the co-founders who oversee everything, to the therapists and others who work with the students.
Our son took advantage of many aspects of the RMS program. He typically works out 5-6 times a week, so he made good use of the gym membership. He found meditation challenging, but saw the value of mindfulness. Maureen helped him to understand the value of meditation and how to integrate it into the rest of his life. When it comes to other staff members, his therapist and his anchor. He made a big difference in our son’s life because he would call him out when he needed to, but he was always there for him as well.
Our experience as parents was also very good. We talked with the therapist every week and Josh was always available, too. In addition to the structure, there is flexibility when it is needed. Once, one of us really needed to talk with our son, and even though that wasn’t on the schedule, they arranged it on short notice.
The RMS message to us was, “Don’t worry, your son is in good hands. You get stronger and let us take care of him.” That was such a relief!
We would strongly recommend the program to other parents. Our advice is to be open-minded and listen when people talk about the value of aftercare. Someone said to us that not including aftercare as part of your child’s program is like “living in a half-built house.”
Red Mountain will help you and your child to finish that house and make it a home again.