How Parent Counseling Can Help Your Child and You Reconnect and Move Forward, Together!
Parenting adolescents and teenagers is no easy feat … having raised two of my own, I know!
The adolescent and teen years are when previously open and communicative children can suddenly seem to turn moody and distant, respectful children start talking back and ignoring our every request, and good-natured kids start getting into troubles we hoped only other parents had to deal with.
So if you find yourself getting angry with your child, don’t understand why you no longer seem able to connect with him or her, and even find yourself feeling resentful of your teen’s behavior or lack of appreciation for all you do … I get it.
At the same time we start to find our adolescents and teens remote, moody, and problematic, our children often feel that we parents can’t understand or just don’t “get them.”
Given this disconnect, it’s not surprising when parents feel they’ve exhausted every option in attempting to connect with their teens and adolescents.
Unfortunately, communication difficulties between parents and children only become amplified (if not multiplied) when those adolescents and teens are involved in maladaptive, risky, or even dangerous behaviors.
So what can you do?
Getting the Help Your Child and You Need and Deserve
As parents, all of us can use some extra help from time to time, both to improve our parenting skills, as well as better connect with our children.
Unlike adolescent and teen counseling, parent counseling is for the benefit of you … the parent.
This doesn’t mean that your child won’t benefit from the skills and tools you learn in parent counseling. But the focus is on helping you be the most effective parent possible by making sure you understand your child’s needs, as well as take care of your own.
Professional counseling for parents is designed to help you objectively assess your child’s behaviors, come to terms with your feelings about those behaviors, and determine the solutions that will help both your teen and you keep the lines of communication open, mutually respectful, and trusting.
Parent counseling can also help you navigate some of the more serious issues that many teens experience, such as:
- Refusing to go to school
- Bullying and abuse from peers, or social and peer pressure
- The sudden loss of a close friend
- Drastic family changes, such as a long-distance relocation, separation or divorce, or a serious illness or death in the family
- Substance abuse and other addictive behaviors
- Teen pregnancy
- Severe anxiety, depression, or other mood disorders
- Sexual identity and orientation issues
- Procrastination and low self-esteem
I also work with and help parents, children, and families in court-involved, family law matters post-separation.
Perhaps most importantly of all, parent counseling can help you better understand yourself.
All of us have a tendency to raise our children in the same way we were brought up, or in the exact opposite way, depending on how we feel about our upbringings.
Being consciously aware of how your own childhood affects your parenting style, as well as understanding your own emotional hot-buttons and being able to self-soothe when they’re triggered, will go a long way not only to improving your relationship with your child, but also your relationship with you.
Is Parent Counseling Right for You?
The adolescent and teen years can be a confusing and somewhat rejecting time for parents, and navigating this road often requires a helping hand.
Fortunately, you don’t have to go down this road alone!
I’m here to help you:
- Better understand your teen’s thoughts, moods, and behaviors.
- Understand how your own thoughts and behaviors help or hinder your interactions with other family members.
- Examine your current parenting experiences and receive objective feedback.
- Learn to set boundaries and limits the whole family can live with.
- Practice self-care and make sure your own needs and goals are getting the attention they deserve.
- Not take it personally when your teen doesn’t want to talk with you, isolates in his or her room, or is more interested in his or her screens.
- Cultivate “sideways” conversations, which often help your child relax and be more receptive and open.
- Truly enjoy the time your child and you do have together!
Of course, some problems can’t be solved, or can only be solved by time, and in those cases we’ll work together to at least make sure the situation doesn’t get any worse.
Regardless, if you feel you’re struggling to be an effective parent for your adolescent or teen, parent counseling can help you better understand and cope with the issues your child is experiencing, come to terms with any of your own frustrations and feelings of inadequacy, and help you create a relationship with your teen that is built on openness, honesty, mutual respect, and trust.
Having raised two children of my own, and having worked with and helped adolescents, teens, and their parents in school settings, as well as for the better part of the past decade in my private counseling and psychotherapy practice, I can truly say I love helping parents reconnect with their children, so they can work together to overcome whatever challenges life presents!
So whether you’d like some help objectively assessing the issues your adolescent or teen is facing, would like to better understand why your child behaves the way he or she does, want to restore open communication and trust to your family, or just need some help better taking care of YOU, I encourage you to contact me today. I look forward to speaking with you and helping your child and you reconnect and move forward together with confidence and optimism!