Teen Counseling

For teens, it is especially hard avoiding the pressures of “fitting in” and wanting people to like them. Parents want their teens to do well in school and get along with family and peers. With changing hormones and rapid growth spurts, teens have a lot of extra stress. As their stress levels increase, many may become moody, argumentative, and even depressed.

Allowing your child to engage in outpatient psychotherapy can be what they need. Therapy can help kids mature, improve their problem-solving, change unwanted behaviors, and learn to take more responsibility for their own actions. It is also important the family is a strong support system with good communication for the kids.

Why Do Teens Need Therapy?

Teens need therapy when they have problems they can't cope with alone. Or they need help when problems affect how well they do, feel, or act. If things don't get better on their own, kids may need therapy so things can improve. Sometimes, entire families need support while trying to communicate, learn, and create boundaries.

How Does Therapy Work?

In therapy, kids learn by doing. With teens, therapists share ideas that focus on learning the skills they need. They talk through feelings and solve problems. Therapists give praise and support as kids learn. They help kids believe in themselves and find their strengths. Therapy builds helpful thinking patterns and healthy behavioral habits. A therapist might meet with the child and parent together or meet with the child alone. It depends on the child's age. A therapist might also meet with a parent to give tips and ideas for how to help their child at home.

What Happens in Therapy?

At first, the therapist will meet with you and your child to talk. They will ask questions and listen. This helps them learn more about your child and about the problem. The therapist will tell you how they can help.

After that, your child will go to more therapy visits. At these visits, your child might:

Talk. Talking is a healthy way to express feelings. When kids put feelings into words instead of actions, they can act their best. When someone listens and knows how they feel, kids are more ready to learn.

Do activities. Therapists use activities to teach about feelings and coping skills. They may have kids draw or play as a way to learn. They may teach mindfulness and calm breathing as a way to lower stress.

Practice new skills. Therapists help kids practice what they learn. These games allow kids to use self-control, and patience, listen, try again, or deal with losing.

Solve problems. With older kids and teens, therapists ask how problems affect them at home, and at school. They talk about how to solve these problems.

How Long Do Kids Do Therapy?

How long therapy lasts depends on the goals you and your child's therapist have. Most of the time, a therapist will want to meet with your child once a week for a few months.