My daughter had been in treatment for six months when she went to Red Mountain. We were eager to find her a young adult transition program where she could continue to address her significant traumas while practicing sobriety and independence in a safe and supportive environment.
I was drawn to RMS because it provided students substantial leeway in their lives while continuing to support them with adequate structure, a variety of programming, and individualized therapeutic plans. She was attracted to Buddhist approaches to sobriety, so the emphasis on mindfulness at Red Mountain was very appealing. Finally, the Sedona location was a draw for its sheer beauty, which is therapeutic in itself.
She benefited enormously from Red Mountain’s flexibility and their commitment to individualized therapeutic planning. She would not have succeeded without the caring attention the clinical staff showed her nor without their wide range and depth of expertise in helping students heal from trauma and addiction. From the top down, Red Mountain staff treat their students with honesty, respect for individuality, and the firm expectation that students will behave according to those same principles. For the first time in her journey, she trusted her therapeutic team completely and was able to be utterly vulnerable and honest with them.
She felt valued and understood, particularly by Maureen and her primary therapist, and this made all the difference for her.
A more nuanced but incredibly valuable aspect of the program is their commitment to making their students take full responsibility for their lives. One of the foundations of the RMS process is that students have choice. They must choose to do their work and must own any failures. They must grow up, engage in all facets of adult life, and advocate for themselves. When they do these things, when they buy in and make efforts, RMS staff are there to buttress them, but staff are not going to handhold, enable dysfunction or inaction, or do any of the necessary work for the student. This requirement was often uncomfortable to witness, but it resulted in our daughter being able to survive and thrive after graduating from Red Mountain.
Families considering Red Mountain should know that Josh and Maureen genuinely care about their students and are committed to guiding them toward leading successful, sober lives. They and their staff are invested in their work and bring personal experience and years of education and training to support their students in their journeys. It is unusual, if not unique, to have executive directors of a treatment program know all their students very well and be intimately involved in their therapy and training!
Even more surprising and valuable is that this investment in your child’s health and success lasts not just for the duration of their stay at Red Mountain but forever! I don’t think many programs (if any) offer this kind of meaningful lifetime support to their students. I would advise families to trust the Red Mountain team and process and to trust their child! I would advise patience, as the process can be long and progress is not linear.