Significant physical and psychological changes mark the preadolescence and adolescence years and can be a difficult period for both kids and parents. The developmental task during this time centers on breaking away from parents and finding one’s identity and voice. This can create a struggle between wanting independence yet still needing support. Many teens who I see say “I don’t feel right and I don’t know why,” while their parents say “I don’t recognize my child anymore.” This developmental struggle is often complicated by peer, academic, and global concerns.
Therapy with teenagers requires a special sensitivity to teenage development. My work with adolescents focuses on supporting them in navigating through this transitional time. I work collaboratively with parents/caregivers to ensure that skills learned in therapy can be integrated into the teen’s environment and they can be empowered and successful at home, school, and in the world.
Some examples of reasons teens and their parents seek therapy are:
- Mood Issues (Depression and Anxiety)
- Academic Performance
- Concentration and Attention
- Family Conflicts
- Blended families: step parent/step sibling concerns
- Body Image
- Identity Development
- Peer pressure, friends, and relationships
- Grief & Loss