Therapy for the teens, the whats, whys and whos.

Happy New January!

Over Christmas I met some new and lovely people and one particular evening I was discussing with a new friend the teen talk I presented back in November and how well therapy works with teenagers and why it so works well. 

One of the things she mentioned was, how hard it was choosing a therapist- what do you look for?! But, before all that, when do you actually consider if your child may need a spot of therapy and if so, what type? (If we can get over the Taboo that the word “Therapy” evokes that is!) 

So I thought I would write a little bunch of my opinions, to hopefully help if someone were to consider therapy for themselves or their child; why would they consider therapy, where to begin understanding what therapy can do.

Therapy at its best can be considered as exercise for the mind; a space to go through what is going on for you, and why life and it’s contents are affecting you in the way they are. It is not (generally) what you see on TV- (sometimes it can be), so it is important to gauge what sort of therapy you are looking for- what do you want to achieve?

I chose to specialise in Hypnotherapy as not only does it involve listening and understanding but it also brings with it active intervention- the chance to make changes on a subconscious level, it can be faster than the traditional talking therapies but similarly works with rapport- trust and harmony.

So why is therapy great for the teens to twenties?

Future jobs: As we all know our kids at school are being taught for jobs that may not be for life now or even that may not have even been invented-the world of tech is moving so quickly, that who knows what change is around the corner.

Teens in particular are being bombarded by screens- there is no time when they are alone, and this is a crucial time of their “external” self development- how they relate to others outside our home environment. The influx of the net, continually demonstrates how they (we) are “not good enough”.

Society values-The dissolution of believing in God/Gods: Over time people had considered others as “unfortunates” or less fortunate- that the Gods or God had cast them into their life of less fortune- it was not their fault. In our society today we have an immense pressure that comes with, “Anything is possible”-X factor, the Apprentice, rom coms- All of the Disney leads us to believe that we can do anything, and then we are continually learning that, actually we can’t.

The teens suffer because they don’t know where they are going- (us adults generally have found our niche- we may not like it, but we have one), and they are constantly finding out through school grading that they cannot be good at everything- a tough lesson.

Home: London living is TOUGH. The cost of living, the demands of work, the demands of life- tough. Parents find themselves working long hours and carrying around the work stress like rucksacks, let alone finding time to keep the children happy as well as fed. Plus we are outgrown- this new, tech savvy version of us is talking in strange languages about snap chat, instagram, twitter (ooh! one I know) etc, and yes, we don’t understand them- because …we don’t. 

Meanwhile, every actively thinking teen is mostly thinking the same and comparing; I am not good enough- I am not as good as the screen, I am not as good as my friends; then the social struggles begin, and without our wealth of experience to fall back on, the teen begins to feel even more vulnerable.

SO why can therapy work and why can it work for the teens in particular?

Because teens are still growing, still formulating their ideals, Hooray!

Because they have one whole hour where;

They have no screen (result). 

The focus is completely on them

They can develop their OWN ideals

They are free from judgement 

They can feel heard 

They can feel special and unique

They have at their disposal an expert on relationships

For us parents, we get into patterns, absolutely we can give an hour over to them, inevitably (certainly in this house) it leads to at least one danger zone that comes with free speech, ending in (usually) “How many times have I said, tidy your room?!” or, (and probably my worst sin) “Your brother can keep his room clean…” (be more like him) Owch.

The 21st Century isn’t easy, we are all doing too much; working too hard at “providing” at home as well as at work, and alongside constant providing comes this huge new wave of, screen living to show us how to be perfect, and all it is doing is exhausting us.

We too can chose to adapt to this new way of living, by doing things differently, therapy can be part of our adaptation, yes it would be lovely to be all things to all, but we too, (including me) are also just not good enough at EVERYTHING, some things have to give. And like we would go to the gym to train our body, we can go to therapy to train our mind and more importantly, nurture our self esteem.