[Serious]Former teens who went to wilderness camps, therapeutic boarding schools and other "troubled teen" programs, what were your experiences?

My parents were abusive and lost custody of me when I was 15. I was picked up by transporters while I was in the hospital. I was sent to Aspiro, a wilderness therapy program in Utah. My therapist was Jason, a nicotine-addicted asshole who cussed me out for crying every time we had a session. I was horribly sick the whole time I was in wilderness, vomiting and diarrhea everyday. I lived off of rice and beans, and I lost a lot of muscle mass from being so sick. After that I was sent to Discovery Ranch for Girls in Cedar City, Utah. They forced us to move cinder blocks, pull weeds, and clean up animal feces the whole time I was there. The staff openly discriminated against “students” who were of color, who were not straight, or who weren’t Mormon. Institutional abuse at it’s finest. After that, I was sent to Mountain Springs Preparatory Academy. It was a better experience than the previous two places because I was able to interact with the outside world. They made us clean the kitchen, school building, and dorms everyday. We were constantly monitored. On the positive side, I was able to have a phone and go to places in town. I was never able to visit home during my entire time in treatment. When I turned 18 I was able to get my own apartment and finish high school. I’m 20 now. Even though it was hell, I probably would be dead if I had stayed home.

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