Ep.51 – Unsilenced: Exposing The ‘Troubled Teen’ Industry | Lindsay Spyker

At age sixteen, Lindsay Spyker woke in the middle of the night to two strangers hovering over her bed and by order of her parents, she was transported to Cross Creek – a youth ‘rehabilitation’ center in La Verkin, Utah where she would spend the next two years of her life. Today, she shares her harrowing experience with us. The ‘troubled teen’ industry is a multi-billion dollar money machine that preys on parental anxiety and uses deceptive marketing tactics to sell a high-dollar dogmatic approach to ‘treatment’ wherein children are separated from their families and indoctrinated to believe that they are flawed and in need of fixing. Each year, countless youth are sent to therapeutic boarding schools, youth rehab centers, and conversion camps, many of which are led by untrained staff and special interests groups. There have been tens of thousands of reports of abuse and psychological coercion in these environments spanning many decades; and yet, they continue to operate across the US and abroad. Breaking Code Silence – now known as Unsilenced – has been shining a spotlight on survivor stories since 2014, and Lindsay is here today to share her experience with us and to advocate for accountability and widespread legislative change. She shares what it was like for her as a ‘uncontrollable’ child as well as the terror of being sent away as a teen. She offers a peek behind the curtain at Cross Creek and shares openly about the abuse she witnessed and suffered there. Today’s episode is bid for collective activism on behalf of children everywhere and a cautionary tale reminding us all (parents especially) that youth rehab facilities aren’t always what the shiny brochures promise them to be.

March 22, 2023

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