Now more than ever teens are showing signs of distress. We have seen the articles in the news: feelings of unhappiness, emptiness, lack of connection, and loneliness at younger and younger ages. More disturbingly, suicide rates and self-harm (such as cutting) are on the rise.
Most teens find me relatable and I am always willing to refer out for a better fit, if needed. Typically, the safe space in my office is a valuable time to reflect, vent and look at self-defeating behaviors. Unlike experienced adults, many teens interpret seemingly routine events as traumatic and need a place to process complex feelings.
Levels of family involvement in the sessions vary from family to family. At times, when family conflict is high such as in divorce, it is better to provide a quiet place for the teen while at other times, when communication problems in the family are at the heart of the problem, I can provide family therapy or take a family approach.
Some teens prefer a creative approach and utilize art and writing in their process. Still others love to talk and are at home with traditional talk therapy. Fortunately, with a wide variety of experience and training, I can tailor my approach to the individual.
I do take a special interest in the connection between teens and the internet and hope to make an impact in helping teens balance the internet and real-life coping skills. Teen groups are in the works culminating with a retreat in October.
In treating anxiety and depression, I help you to stop beating yourself up and release yourself from these deeply ingrained patterns. I can help you look at past problems so that you may ultimately let them go.
I can help you learn to become mindful, visualize desired behaviors and simply release tension, bringing you to an alert, relaxed state of mind. It is also important to look what you are doing outside of therapy. Are you getting adequate rest, nutrition, and exercise? What about your spiritual life? Do you have a good support system? We can examine all of these and then look at what is keeping you from enjoying your life.
For some people, symptoms do not improve substantially without medication. With your permission, I would be happy to work with your doctor to find the best way to treat your anxiety or depression.
Although recovery is best achieved through your recovery community, as a therapist with experience in substance abuse and addiction treatment, I can help you to explore and heal the underlying issues which may have motivated that desire to escape in the first place. I am able to be empathetic to your pain while helping you distinguish between giving up, self-sabotoge and making realistic decisions that serve you. I have experience in treating people who have been abused and who have grown up in families where one or both parents have been chemically-addicted. I know that addiction is a common denominator between all classes and I do not judge you for your lapses in integrity while using. At the same time, I will hold you accountable for your choices and how you can live a life that sustains itself.