If you’re concerned about your teen’s mood or behavior, you’re not alone. The teenage years can be a tumultuous time for many kids and their parents. During these years teens are dealing with the difficult and often painful task of forming their individual identity and figuring out who they are in the world. The process of growing up at this stage, involving vast changes and a barrage of new experiences, can be overwhelming for a lot of teens.
Teens may tell you they are having a tough time or maybe you have noticed them struggling. You may find they are sad and withdrawn, not interested in the activities they used to enjoy. Perhaps they are more irritable than usual, tense and anxious about friends and school assignments. You may be upset because they are angry at home, making poor choices or acting impulsively or being self-destructive. Whatever the case, you want your child to feel better. As someone who understands the issues teenagers face, from their early teens through their college years, I can assure you they want to feel better too. Teen counseling can help them find healthy ways to manage the challenges of growing up.
Social & Emotional Challenges
During the teenage years your child has a need to push you away in order to assert his or her independence. Lacking the words to explain what is happening, he or she may act out. For teens, being angry with you can make it easier for them to start to separate. You may suddenly find you are both arguing more about homework, chores, curfews and your teen’s attitude in general. This can be just as confusing a time for them, as it is for you, as they want to stay connected with you while also needing to separate.
On top of this, your kids are beginning to discover a whole new world of possibilities at a time when they are being given more responsibility at home and in school. Some teens feel so stressed by school and activities that they rarely get enough sleep, making them even more emotional. Today’s kids are also dealing with social media which complicates their social lives. Family changes such as divorce or separation can add to their distress.
The last few years of high school can be especially stressful as teens worry about their future and what is going to happen to them. The transition from high school to college or the workforce can also be a trying time as they embark on a new chapter of their lives.
All these pressures at home, school and with peers can be overwhelming. It’s no wonder many teenagers are prone to depression, anxiety, risky behaviors and are lacking the resources to handle all of these changes. Teen counseling offers support and guidance to help your teen find healthy tools and gain new insights to navigate this confusing time. Counseling can also help you to better understand and communicate with your kid.
How I Work
Through the development of a warm engaging relationship, I help adolescents develop the skills to succeed. I help them to build upon their strengths, uncovering what is bothering them, helping to change self-defeating behaviors and helping to gain skills to solve their problems.
I offer a safe space, free from the demands of parents, teachers and peers, where teens can talk freely about their concerns and engage in meaningful self-reflection and problem-solving. I take a keen interest in how teens express themselves through their interests such as sports, art and music. As I get to know your teen, we build a foundation of trust and honest communication that promotes healthy development. The skills and self-awareness teens gain in counseling will them help them now and as they move forward.
Parents are essential partners in the therapeutic process. I like to meet with you regularly, either alone or with your child, to hear your perspective on your teen’s progress, any concerns you may have and to collaborate on solutions to what you may see as ongoing problems. Together we can strengthen family relationships through improved communications and understanding.
To maintain your teen’s trust, please understand I must respect his or her desire for a confidential counseling relationship. What your teen discusses in therapy remains confidential unless he or she gives me permission to share it with you. The only exceptions are if your teen expresses intent to harm himself or herself or another person. Also, there may be cases when, due to the wishes of your child or the nature of the issues he or she is discussing, that your involvement will be more limited.
If you have any questions feel free to contact Carol here!