Hey Jon and JD,
It’s all about the ears. I have similar answers for both of you.
First Jon, it’s really hard for me to say if you’ve broken the harp without hearing the sound you are producing. If you can record a snippet and attach it to a forum post here, i’ll take a listen and tell you what I hear. Unfortunately, just opening the harmonica up will not tell you much without putting a magnifying glass over the reed and looking for fractures or blockages around the perimeter, where it vibrates.
And, JD, it really helps to hear the bends you are going for in your mind. Listen to the jam/example tracks a few times, then slowly go for the bends. Another tip is, if you can get control over a long slow bend on those holes first, that can help get you closer to defining the different notes.
Ps. Jon, Jam tracks kick in at Step 4 for straight harp and Step 10 for cross harp (blues).