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Juvie, Boot Camp, Or Therapy? Figuring Out What Will Help Your Teen Boy

Teenage boys can be incredibly difficult for parents to handle when they choose to act out. Many times they have already outgrown one of their parents and may be acting out aggressively. So, many of these parents turn to options like boot camps, therapeutic boarding schools, and youth detention centers in more extreme cases.

Each of these options has distinct pros and cons which you should know before you send your troubled son to one of these institutions.

Youth Detention Centers And Teen Boys

Parents cannot enroll their sons in youth detention centers, also colloquially referred to as juvie, a crime needs to be committed first. Many times juvenile court judges will offer several options to young offenders such as community service, monetary reparations, and/or time in a youth detention center. If parents aren’t willing to work with the other sentences, their son will be sent to a youth detention center.

Pros of juvie

  1. Son is confined and limited in ability to create mischief

  2. May scare him back into good behavior

  3. Family is given space to recover from teen son’s bad behavior

Cons of juvie

  1. Son will have a record, which may be public

  2. Can be a long process sealing juvenile records

  3. Son may be exposed to worse behaviors in juvie

  4. Risk of recidivism

  5. Poor academics so your son may fall further behind peers

Military-Style Discipline At Boot Camps

Juvenile boot camps attempt to mimic the military discipline seen in the armed forces. Many parents find this appealing when dealing with a seemingly impossible-to-discipline son. The out-of-control behavior is dealt with by high physical activity and strict structure. Boot camps also can be one of the least expensive options when dealing with a troubled teen. However, due to poor regulation, boot camps can greatly vary in quality.

Pros of boot camps

  1. Variable duration, from weeks to years, depending on your son’s needs

  2. Works defi