Parents Universal Resource Experts – Sue Scheff – Parents At Their Wit’s End

Are you at your wit’s end?


Are you experiencing any of the following situations or feeling at a complete loss or a failure as a parent?  You are not alone and by being a proactive parent you are taking the first step towards healing and bringing your family back together.


  • Is your teen escalating out of control?
  • Is your teen becoming more and more defiant and disrespectful?
  • Is your teen manipulative? Running your household?
  • Are you hostage in your own home by your teen’s negative behavior?
  • Is your teen angry, violent or rage outbursts?
  • Is your teen verbally abusive?
  • Is your teen rebellious, destructive and withdrawn?
  • Is your teen aggressive towards others or animals?
  • Is your teen using drugs and/or alcohol?
  • Does your teen belong to a gang?
  • Do they frequently runaway or leave home for extended periods of time?
  • Has their appearance changed – piercing, tattoo’s, inappropriate clothing?
  • Has your teen stopped participating in sports, clubs, church and family functions?  Have they become withdrawn from society?
  • Is your teen very intelligent yet not working up to their potential? Underachiever?  Capable of doing the work yet not interested in education.
  • Does he/she steal?
  • Is your teen sexually active?
  • Teen pregnancy? 
  • Is your teen a good kid but making bad choices?
  • Undesirable peers? Is your teen a follower or a leader?
  • Low self esteem and low self worth?
  • Lack of motivation?  Low energy?
  • Mood Swings?  Anxiety?
  • Teen depression that leads to negative behavior?
  • Eating Disorders?  Weight loss? Weight gain?
  • Self-Harm or Self Mutilation?
  • High School drop-out?
  • Suspended or Expelled from school?
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts?
  • Is your teen involved in legal problems? Have they been arrested?
  • Juvenile Delinquent?
  • Conduct Disorder?
  • Bipolar?
  • Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD)?


Does your teen refuse to take accountability and always blame others for their mistakes?


  • Do you feel hopeless, helpless and powerless over what options you have as a parent?  Are you at your wit’s end?



Does any of the above sound familiar?  Many parents are at their wit’s end by the time they contact us, but the most important thing many need to know is you are not alone.  There is help but the parent needs to be proactive and educate themselves in getting the right help.




Many try local therapy, which is always recommended, but in most cases, this is a very temporary band-aid to a more serious problem.  One or two hours a week with a therapist is usually not enough to make the major changes that need to be done.   


If you feel you are at your wit’s end and are considering outside resources, please contact us.   An informed parent is an educated parent and will better prepare to you to make the best decision for your child.  It is critical not to place your child out of his/her element.  In many cases placing a teen that is just starting to make bad choices into a hard core environment may cause more problems.  Be prepared – do your homework.


Many parents are in denial and keep hoping and praying the situation is going to change.  Unfortunately in many cases, the problems usually escalate without immediate attention.  Don’t be parents in denial; be proactive in getting your teen the appropriate help they may need.  Whether it is local therapy or outside the home assistance, be in command of the situation before it spirals out of control and you are at a place of desperation.  At wit’s end is not a pleasant place to be, but so many of us have been there.


Finding the best school or program for your child is one of the most important steps a parent does.  Remember, your child is not for sale – don’t get drawn into high pressure sales people, learn from my mistakes.  Read my story at for the mistakes I made that nearly destroyed my daughter. 


In searching for schools and programs we look for the following:

·         Helping Teens – not Harming them

·         Building them up – not Breaking them down

·         Positive and Nurturing Environments – not Punitive

·         Family Involvement in Programs – not Isolation from the teen

·         Protect Children – not Punish them








Parents Universal Resource Experts – Dating Violence and Cell Phones

cellphoneviolence.jpgBy Connect with Kids 

“It’s a loss that you can’t comprehend; it’s a void that can never be filled again.”

– Tom Santoro, father

Studies show that one in three teenage girls has been in a relationship where she has feared for her safety.  One in five has been physically abused; one in four has been verbally abused. Even when your daughter is at home, that doesn’t mean she is out of harm’s way.

“The old saying, “If I can’t have her, no one else can’ came true for Lisa,” says Tom Santoro, Lisa’s father.

Lisa Santoro, 18, was brutally murdered by her ex-boyfriend.

“It’s a loss that you can’t comprehend; it’s a void that can never be filled again,” says her father.

In the weeks between their break-up and her death, Lisa’s ex-boyfriend, Timothy Bucholz, began stalking her.

“We found out afterwards that he kept calling her after the breakup. We found out he started to follow her around,” says Santoro.

According to a survey by Teenage Research Unlimited, one in three teens is a victim of cyber-stalking — harassment either by phone calls or text messages.

“He would call and cry, say that he was upset that she had broken up with him. There were other conversations where he started telling her that he wanted all his stuff back,” says Laura Mejia, Lisa’s friend.

Experts say it can be hard to tell that your teen is being stalked, especially if she has her own cell phone. But there are warning signs.

“You see differences in the way your child behaves. There may be depression, there may be isolation, there may be a nervousness around the telephone ringing. There may be telephone calls coming to your child’s cell phone all hours of the night. You hear the phone ring several times, it‘s the same person,” says Kim Frndak, domestic violence specialist.
“Maybe the child sees the caller ID and puts the phone away,” Frndak continues. “They may or may not want to tell you what’s going on, but that’s a big red flag — the harassing phone calls and stalking behaviors.”

Frndak says if the harassment continues, call the parents of the stalker.

“You may get some resistance, but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with saying ‘I’m going to call’ because chances are if he’s behaving this way towards your daughter, he’s done it in the past with other people,” says Frndak.

“And she has got to realize you’re doing this for her protection. I know as a teenager they don’t like it, but it’s something you have to do as a parent,” says Santoro.

Tips for Parents

  • Abuse can be physical, emotional or sexual. Slapping, hitting and kicking are forms of physical abuse that can occur in both romances and friendships. (Nemours Foundation)
  • Dating abuse is linked to patterns of violence that may negatively affect future relationships. If your child has been abused or is participating in some of the risky behaviors listed above, encourage him or her to seek help from a doctor or mental health professional to cope with emotions or to learn how to stop unhealthy habits and behaviors. (Nemours Foundation)
  • Emotional abuse (teasing, bullying and humiliating others) can be difficult to recognize because it doesn’t leave any visible scars. Threats, intimidation, putdowns, and betrayal are all harmful forms of emotional abuse that can really hurt. (Nemours Foundation)
  • You may be involved in an abusive relationship when someone …
    • harms you physically in any way, including slapping, pushing, grabbing, shaking, smacking, kicking, and punching.
    • tries to control different aspects of your life, such as how you dress, who you hang out with, what you say.
    • frequently humiliates you or makes you feel unworthy (for example, if a partner puts you down but tells you that he or she loves you).
    • coerces or threatens to harm you, or harm himself, if you leave the relationship.
    • twists the truth to make you feel that you are to blame for your his actions.
    • demands to know where you are at all times.
    • constantly becomes jealous or angry when you want to spend time with your friends.
  • If you believe you are in an abusive relationship and you want to end it, experts recommend:
    • First, make sure you’re safe. A trusted adult can help. If the person has physically attacked you, get medical attention or call the police immediately. Don’t wait; assault is illegal, and so is rape — even if it’s done by someone you are dating. (Nemours Foundation)
    • Avoid the tendency to isolate yourself from your friends and family. You might feel like you have nowhere to turn, or you might be embarrassed about what’s been going on, but this is when you need support the most. People such as counselors, doctors, teachers, coaches, and friends will want to help you, so let them. (Nemours Foundation)
    • Ending abuse and violence in teen relationships is a community effort with plenty of people ready to help. Seek out crisis centers, teen help lines and abuse hotlines. These organizations have professionally-trained staff to listen, understand and help. (Nemours Foundation)


  • Nemours Foundation

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) Preventing Addiction – A great book for parents with today’s teens

Kids are Doing a Lot More Than You Think, and at an Earlier AgeRecent studies show that the average child begins to drink and smoke cigarettes at age 13! This means that about half begin younger than that. Parents are rarely aware of this until their kids are several years older. By then the kids have begun other, even more dangerous activities such as drug use and underage sexual activity.
Read more about  Dr. Fleming and order this valuable book today.

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) Teen Suicide – Communicating with your Teen

teensuicide1.jpgAs you have probably heard before, talking to your teen about suicide is one of the most important things you can do in helping to prevent a suicide attempt. Many times parents are unsure of what to say and instead say nothing. Here are some suggestions of how you can open the channels of communication and help your teen open up.First, tell your teen you care; no matter the state of your relationship, just hearing this can go a long way. Tell your teen you are there if needed, and are willing to listen without judging. NAMI estimates that around 80% of all teens who attempt suicide give some sort of verbal or nonverbal warning beforehand, so be sure to take whatever your teen says completely seriously.

A common mistake parents make when dealing with a suicidal teen is thinking that if they mention suicide they will be planting the idea in their teen’s brain. This is simply not accurate. In fact, by mentioning your fears, you are showing your teen that you take their actions and their life seriously. Remember, most people who are suicidal do not really want to die- they want to put an end to the suffering they are experiencing. When given an opportunity to be helped through that suffering, or when some of that suffering is alleviated by knowing they aren’t alone, this can help reduce the desire to end the pain by more drastic means.

More information on Teen Suicide.
Sue Scheff, Parents Universal Resource Experts

Parents Univeral Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) – Teenage Drivers

teendriver.jpgBy Connect with Kids

Behind The Wheel

When kids get their license, it opens up a world of freedom, and a world of risks. More teens die driving than any other age group. While we can’t protect our teenagers from everything on the road, we have to at least try to protect them from themselves – young drivers are inexperienced, easily distracted and typically drive as if they are invincible.

Children won’t always listen to adults. That’s why our programs always feature real kids that your kids can relate to. In Behind the Wheel, teens share their true stories about driving and crashing – broken bones, broken trust, shattered dreams. Watch this compelling program as a family, and suddenly you won’t be talking at your kids… you’ll be talking with them.

With a team of experts, you’ll learn many ways that parents can help keep kids safe on the road. You’ll explore driving contracts, cell phone use and new technology that helps parents to keep tabs on their kids’ driving. Don’t miss this chance to see what real teen drivers are doing on the road…to show your own kids the incredible dangers… and to learn how you can help them be safe before it’s too late.

Sue Scheff (Parents Universal Resource Experts) – Teenage Depression

teendepression.jpgBy Connect with Kids


The face of depression is getting younger. In a recent survey, 23% of young adults reported symptoms of serious depression before the age of 20—up from just 2% a generation ago. The reasons range from increased pressure in school to rising divorce rates among parents, experts say.

“My parents went through an awful divorce my ninth-grade year, and I was devastated,” says 18 year-old Brittany.

Parents often mis-interpret the signs of depression. Some kids may become lethargic and withdrawn, as expected, while others may show agitation, frustration and aggression. For school-aged children a drop in grades could also be an indicator. Unfortunately, it often provokes punishment rather than sympathy.

Psychologist Sunaina Jain says, “Rather than thinking of children’s misbehaviors as discipline problems or misbehaviors as deliberate, it’s important to see them as communication from the child. This is the child’s way of telling you how he or she is feeling”

Experts say that, given the new reality, a quarter of all kids will experience depression. Parents need to make sure they take a constant measure of their child’s emotional pulse.

 What Parents Should Know

Emotional anchors are fewer and further between for many kids. In years past kids spent more time with parents, grandparents and neighbors than they do now, says USA Today.

Kids look to parents for emotional support and reassurance. With the amount of time parents and children spending together on a downward trend, many children are feeling alone—isolated.

In the past, when Mom and Dad weren’t around, grandparent or neighbors were likely to be at arms reach, but not anymore, studies say. Grandparents aren’t as accessible and families now move an average of every seven years, compared to every 21 years three decades ago. Adjusting to a new neighborhood every few years makes it more difficult to develop strong and lasting neighborly relations.

With the odds of smooth sailing being less and less for children, parents should be extra cautious of children’s emotional status. They need support. They need reassurance. They need an emotional anchor.

Parents Univeral Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) – Smoking Pot and Lung Damage

teen_pot.jpgBy Connect with Kids

“This latest study shows that you have destruction of lung tissue, reduction of lung vital capacity and a decreased ability to exhale if you smoke marijuana. What’s probably the most disturbing part of this latest article is that it shows that a cigarette is really much less potent than a joint of marijuana.”

– Fadlo Khuri, M.D., oncologist

<!–a href=”#” target=”_blank”&gt;Sprint&lt;/a–>According to the latest Monitoring the Future report, more than 40 percent of 12-graders have experimented with marijuana. In fact, it is the most commonly-abused illegal drug. While parents, teachers and physicians have been warning kids about pot for years, new information shows it’s even more dangerous than we thought.

Andrew was 14 years old when he first tried pot.

“I didn’t even inhale it all the way, I just took it into my mouth, but I loved the taste.  I knew that I liked it,” says Andrew Wolpa, 18.

From there he experimented with alcohol, painkillers, mushrooms and almost every drug — except one.

“I never smoked cigarettes because those things will kill ya, you know,” says Wolpa.

But according to a study by the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand, smoking one marijuana joint is equal to smoking five cigarettes at the same time.

“This latest study shows that you have destruction of lung tissue, reduction of lung vital capacity and a decreased ability to exhale if you smoke marijuana. What’s probably the most disturbing part of this latest article is that it shows that a cigarette is really much less potent than a joint of marijuana,” says Fadlo Khuri, M.D., oncologist.

And he says smoking pot can lead to emphysema and lung cancer.

“That’s a real problem because we only cure about 15 to 17 percent of all the people who present with lung cancer nowadays. So this is a disease in which you have a 1-in-6 chance of surviving it for five years or longer,” says Khuri.

Khuri says that talking about painful and serious diseases is one way to persuade kids not to use marijuana.

“Confronting them with the data, showing them what the outcomes are with lung cancer and emphysema, with what some individuals would consider even moderate marijuana or cigarette use,” says Khuri.

Andrew says even though he’s in rehab, he’s not ready to quit.

“I don’t want to be clean yet. I’m not there,” says Wolpa.

Tips for Parents

  • From the Nemours Foundation:
    • Marijuana is the most widely used illegal drug in the United States. It is a dry, shredded green/brown mix of flowers, stems, seeds, and leaves of the plant Cannabis Sativa. A stronger form of marijuana called hashish (hash) looks like brown or black cakes or balls. Street names for marijuana include pot, herb, weed, grass, Jane, reefer, dope, and ganja.
    • Marijuana is typically smoked in cigarettes (joints or spliffs), hollowed-out cigars (blunts), pipes (bowls), or water pipes (bongs). Some people mix it into food or brew it as a tea.
    • Marijuana is just as damaging to your lungs as cigarettes – and some reports show that it is even worse. Steady users suffer coughs, wheezing, frequent colds, and respiratory infections, such as bronchitis.
  • There are more than 400 known chemicals in marijuana. A single joint contains four times as much cancer-causing tar as a filtered cigarette. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)


  • Nemours Foundation
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services