Therapy for Teenagers
While I offer a range of experience and expertise, I am the most experienced and most passionate about working with teenagers. I have worked with a lot of tough kids and tough cases over the years. I'm proud that I have been able to crack some really tough nuts over the years. When it comes to teenagers, I take pride in the fact that I am able to rise to some of the most challenging cases.
I love working with kids, they are both fun and challenging for me and too many of us forget how important they are. All to often they fall between the cracks which is why I wanted to dedicate an entire page to teens and how amazing they really are as well as how much they mean to me as a practitioner. It's my goal to bring more awareness and caring to the issues that our kids are facing. They need us to believe in them and be there for them.
Before you contact me...
You, as a parent or guardian, must know that I expect a lot out of the parents that I work with. I also expect you to show up, be honest, participate, accept feedback and make some of your own changes.
Some parents see their teenager as the problem and they don't want to change. Those parents don't usually do well with me as I have high expectations for everyone that sits on my couch. I've had situations in the past where it was necessary to just work with the kid and I have done that many times but for the most part I expect the parents to show up, take accountability and put in their own work. Frankly, some parent need to be told harsh truths and they need someone to hold them accountable. Some parents want a therapist who will take their side even when they're in the wrong. I'm not that therapist. I offer guidance and caring correction but if parents are doing things that are harmful, I always let them know.
I insist on it being this way because change happens in the fastest and most profound ways when everybody is involved. I've felt pleasantly surprised and even shocked at how quickly things can change for the better when everyone is on the same page. High parental involvement is just one element that makes my approaches effective and so I insist on high parental involvement when it's possible.
Doing What Works
I've built a career off building a system that works. I know how to help kids. I know what works and what doesn't. I incorporate many elements for effective treatment and change.
Relationship based approach
Where the real difference is made
I've learned that if you want to make a difference in a teenagers life and even potentially save it, a good relationship is necessary and this is where I accel. I genuinely like kids and I genuinely enjoy getting to know them and having fun with them in therapy.
Simple yet Effective
Kids listen to me and take my advice and guidance because I listen to them first. I make it a point to make sure that they are heard and understood before I offer any solutions. They
Vital for the process
Sadly, many adults, including parents, don't put sufficient work into building trust with teens. I always practice honesty and directness with kids. They always know where I stand. I say what I mean and mean what I say. When they trust me, they engage in the therapeutic process.
Kind and caring
It has always served we well to alays try to do the right thing with kids just because it's the right thing and to care about them just as they are instead of how we think they should be. When they feel cared about, genuinely, it makes a big difference.
It's so important for youth to learn the importance of being responsible not only for their thoughts, emotions and behavior but their experience in life. It's important for them to learn how be in charge of the type of experience that they have in life. I don't let them make excuses but I also realize how important it is to teach them along the way.
Giving kids effectie strategies and tools
It's so vital for teenagers to understand that they are in charge of their own experience in life. They can and should learn how to create their desired outcomes. I teach them the tools they need to work through their problems and issues.
Changing the family system
The best results always come about when the family makes adjustments. When the parents get onto the same page as the kids, the real magic starts to happen. It's important to recognize the things that aren't working and making necessary changes that are in the best interest of everyone invovled.
Getting the parents to make changes
Some parents aren't interested in making changes, they don't think that they are part of the problem but I've found that it's vital for parents to engage and be involved in the process, it always creates the best results.
Teen boys and suicide
In this modern era, teen boys are a high risk for suicide and I always want parents to be mindful of their sons. Boys tend to hide their emotions more, they tend to be less emotionally expressive, their verbal expression of emotion is usually poor compared to girls their age. Many boys have also become skilled at hiding it, they can seem happy and positive when they are quietly struggling. So many boys suffer in silence. We live in a culture that diminishes their importance and worth; boys are told that they don't have real problems. They've been conditioned to believe that they aren't important. I've seen so much suicide around my clients that we simply cannot ignore this issue. The silence around male suicide is absolutely deafening. If you have a son, you need to be aware that he is at risk for attempting and possibly completing suicide. If you have a teen son that has had some emotional issues, more than anything you must make sure he knows how much you love him and how important he is to you. He needs to be validated. As a parent, his hope and his wellness hinge on you. Click on the button below to read my full write-up on this issue and what you can and should do to help the situation. I, of course, I am always here to do what I can to help and support you and your family.