Are you worried about your child?
Does your teen need help?
Have your teen’s grades started to slip?
Has your teen’s mood become unbearable?
Have you noticed drastic changes in your teen?
Does your teen feel like no one understands?
Does your teen isolate?
Does your teen become overwhelmed with tasks you feel they can handle?
Are you worried about if your teen is using drugs/alcohol?
We recognize that you do not need a reminder of how adolescences and “tween” years is a period of drastic changes. Their school workload changes, peer groups change or cause turmoil, hormones change, and development of identity cause teens to sometime appear and feel out of control. Here you are wondering what else to do! The slightest event might cause your teen to feel overwhelmed or immediately change behaviors and react in ways you haven’t seen before. This is a critical period of development for your child. While you shouldn’t be alarmed at these changes, you should take precautionary measures to have your teen evaluated and provide an outlet for your child to talk about their problems from their perspective. We are sure you can remember some of your own growth during this period. Sometimes, it is uncomfortable for teens to talk about issues directly with parents. But it’s important to keep your child safe and keep open lines of communication about the difficulties they are experiencing. Teen counseling is a way for parents and teenagers to come together to understand and support your child. We can help parents and teens get through tough times and create new ways of understanding each other.
Teens are great a masking signs of depression, anxiety disorders, and hidden risk behaviors used to cope. From the perspective of brain development, these young growing ones lack the high level cognitive functions that adults have. This means that your teen will struggle with sifting through conflicting thoughts, siding with what is “good” or “bad”, predicting outcomes of situations, working toward goals, and suppressing urges or controlling impulses. The lack of presence of these functions put your teen at risk for mood fluctuations, finding themselves in risky situations without seeing the end result, using drugs or alcohol to cope, or suicidal thought or actions, or a general lack of direction and drive. Without treatment and support, these may develop into permanent behaviors or as a “coping” style for your teen to withdrawal, isolate, be defensive, criticize, or participate in more risky, impulsive behaviors. Of course, not all teenagers are alike, but they are unable to separate their emotions from the logical part of the “real world”. So they can’t just “stop doing something” or “change their attitude” without being shown how to practice flexibility and without being shown how to change their behavior.
As a parent, it is also helpful to know how to support your teen during this time. Throughout the course of therapy, you will be provided information to help support yourself and your teen during these rocky changes that present. The role of a therapist is to share information that is helpful for your teen’s recovery. That means not divulging every detail about our sessions, but gearing toward exactly what you need to know to help support, increase communication, ask the right questions, and look for changes to note your teen’s improvement.
Teens face special issues of development and we can help them understand what they are going through and to help them make positive and healthy changes in their lives. Through talk therapy, interactive sessions, and art therapy teens can find themselves and who they want to be outside of the expectations everyone else has for them. Therapy can be a healthy options for them to explore struggles such as depression, anxiety, OCD, perfectionism, changes in grades, goals for the future, relationships, communication, and turning away from unhealthy and risky behaviors such as substance abuse, alcohol, running away, hiding events, conflict with friends, lying, and stealing.
If your teen is struggling with some of these issues, take a moment to ask yourself, “will things get worse if I do nothing” If so, please call (720) 295-9522 for a phone consultation or to schedule a teen counseling intake session.
If you need help with your teenager, check out the teen counselors at our practice
Call for teen Counseling in Lakewood (720) 295-9522