Are they unhappy with themselves and dealing with low self-esteem? Do they feel like they don’t fit in or belong anywhere? As much as you want to help your teen, are you unsure how involved you should be?
Maybe your teen is suffering from anxiety or depression. Perhaps they’re overwhelmed by all the pressure to succeed in school, sports, and every other area of life. Or maybe they have low self-confidence and struggle to make new friends.
To cope with all their stress, they might be experimenting with drugs and alcohol and engaging in other reckless behaviors. Or perhaps their problem is the opposite—they seem unusually withdrawn and they’re disengaged with their friends. As worried as you are, you may be at a loss to know how to help them.
In many ways, raising a teenager is just as hard as being one. Because your teen wants more independence, they probably don’t want to talk to you about their struggles. As a result, you may have no idea how to support them. You might find yourself asking: How much is too much? How involved should I be in their life? How can I help them without becoming a helicopter parent?
You don’t have to support your teen by yourself. A counsellor can give your teen a safe, neutral space to share their thoughts and express their frustrations. Here at Darcy Bailey & Associates Counselling, our goal is to help your teen feel more confident in dealing with their challenges and deepen their relationship with you in the process.
There is so much happening developmentally in the lives of teenagers. Their brains and bodies are changing, their responsibilities are increasing, and they’re starting to question life’s meaning and purpose. On top of all that, they have to deal with constant pressures from school, sports, and social media. It’s no wonder so many teens are depressed and anxious.
Understandably, all the stress on teens creates pressure for their parents. But it’s hard to know how to help a teenager—after all, they’re not children anymore. They want their space and don’t like being told what to do.
All too often, the ways that parents try to help teens fall into one of three categories: lecture, judgment, or criticism. Avoiding these pitfalls isn’t easy, especially when a teen is making poor decisions and genuinely needs guidance.
Deep down, however, all that teens really want is someone who will listen. They want someone who will make them feel seen, heard, and accepted, not lectured or reprimanded. This is what therapy can provide.
Parenting a teen is no cakewalk. We believe you’re doing the best you can and that’s why we’re here to help. At Darcy Bailey & Associates Counselling, we want to bring fresh eyes and fresh ears to your teen’s situation. Since we don’t have the emotional entanglements that friends and family have, we believe we can offer an objective and unbiased perspective on their life. We want your teen to feel more empowered and make choices from a place of self-esteem and confidence.
Additionally, we want to help you learn new ways to support your teen and deepen the connection between the two of you. Your relationship with your teen is one of the most important parts of their life and you deserve to play an integral role in their journey.
When you call to make an appointment for your teen, you can share your concerns and observations then and there or you can schedule a free, 15-minute phone consultation with a therapist to provide some information directly. Then we will start working with your teen one-on-one.
Although we want you to be included in the healing process, we value your teen’s confidentiality and want them to have a safe space to say whatever they want. In order to work through their struggles, it’s essential that they feel comfortable opening up about what’s going on. Your teen’s therapist will work with them about your involvement in counseling.
In sessions with your teen, we’ll help them play to their strengths, increase their ability to trust themselves, and learn to live comfortably with the unknowns of life. After all, there is so much uncertainty in the teenage years. Your teen is probably dealing with a lot of things for the first time—peer pressure, intimate relationships, the changing of long-time friendships, etc. Therapy can help them navigate the uncharted territory of the teenage years without getting anxious or overwhelmed.
Our practice uses a lot of mindfulness skills to help teens de-stress, regulate painful emotions, and stay present in the moment. Increasing mindful awareness is so important for your teen. It can help them act deliberately and thoughtfully instead of being impulsive or overly reactive.
We also draw from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), which seeks to challenge and correct negative thought patterns. As a teenager, it’s so easy to believe automatic thoughts like “I’m not good enough” or “I’ll never be successful.” CBT can help your teen question the things they tell themselves and create a more positive and empowering view of themselves and their life.
The teenage years are a tremendous time of growth and there is so much to sort out and navigate. No teenager should have to do it all alone—and no parent should have to support them alone. Our role is to take some of the weight off your shoulders and help your teen grow into the best version of themselves. We want them to navigate the obstacles of being a teenager and set them up for a healthy adulthood.
A lot of teens don’t want to go to counselling because they think a therapist will just be one more adult lecturing or judging them. This is not the case. We are here to empower your teen and act as their number-one cheerleader. What’s more, our counsellors have a lot of experience working with teens. We know how to engage teens who are hard to engage and meet them at their own comfort level.
Although sessions with your teen are 100 percent confidential, we still want to be actively involved in their healing and growth. As long as your teen is fine with it, we can check in with you from time to time to hear your concerns and help you parent more effectively. After all, one of our main goals is improving the relationship between you and your teen—we can’t do that without your contributions!
This is normal. If your teen isn’t talking to you as much, it’s important to not take it personally—they are sorting out who they are and starting to become less dependent on you. The good news is that a therapist is someone they can talk to without any reservations. Most of the teens we see end up feeling comfortable once therapy starts and they realise they can safely share whatever is on their mind and get age-appropriate guidance.
If you want to get support for your teenager and improve your relationship with them in the process, we encourage you to connect with us. To get started, you can use the contact form or call 604-533-9163.