Therapy with pre-teens and older children

Pre-teens and older children, roughly 10 to 12 years old, experience therapy differently from adults. Much of therapy involves creating a safe space for young adolescents to explore their feelings, often through creative activities, puppets, stuffed animals, art, writing and nature. When a young person feels secure and begins to trust, the healing begins. I will work with your pre-teen or teen on issues ranging from anxiety, depression, ADD, ADHD, grief, phobias, nightmares, trauma, PTSD, anger, bullying, withdrawal, poor school performance, peer conflict, truancy, self-harm, sibling troubles, illness, eating disorders and a range of other developmental, emotional and social issues relating to youth. I use the DBT framework involving skills group and diary cards to help track and work with behavior alternatives to maladaptive coping.

Therapy with teens

Young people from roughly thirteen to seventeen years old are more apt than pre-teens to engage in "talk therapy" addressing the range of issues listed above, and venturing further into concerns such as drugs, alcohol, peer pressure, job, and sexuality/relationship issues. I use the DBT framework with teen clients to engage the young adult in developing DBT skills for better coping, and to help them gain an understanding of why their emotions take over as they do, and what they can do about it. I provide a confidential environment that supports honest exploration while making safety and openness paramount to our work together. My hope is to help teens use the DBT skills to get through difficult moments short term so that the bigger, more important long term goals for a life worth living can come into focus.

While my space is very limited, spots usually open up within a couple of months. Please note that DBT skills group once weekly in addition to a once weekly individual session is required for full DBT treatment.

Likewise, in some instances I will ask families when possible to commit to joining in a session with the teen every four to six weeks so that we can discuss as a family what the teen is learning in DBT, and how the family can also learn skills to support the teen and work better as a unit.

Please call for a consultation: (415) 685-3894.​

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Copyright 2012 Lauren Gonzalez / Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (California #90006  /  Pennsylvania #MF001036 / New Jersey #37FI00188200)

 

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