Adolescent Counseling

Adolescence is a difficult time for many young people. Their bodies are maturing, their workload is becoming more demanding, and they are struggling to define their identities and claim independence from their parents. Sensitive issues such as the emergence of sexuality, the use of alcohol and drugs, the contraction of STDs, and the onset of pregnancy may interfere with a young person’s healthy emotional development and ability to succeed. Depression, eating disorders, and other mental health disorders often have their onset in the high school and college years.

Adolescent counseling helps young people understand the ways in which influences from the school, home, and community, as well as biological factors, affect their decision making. In a supportive, non-judgmental way, the therapist allows the adolescent to talk openly about his or her thoughts and feelings, identify academic and interpersonal goals, and examine how poor choices and high-risk behaviors may compromise those goals. We use a strength-based model, which recognizes parents as competent and caring partners and values adolescents as resilient individuals capable of making their own decisions. Here are some issues we have helped adolescents with:

  • Gender identity
  • Sexuality and sexual abuse
  • Behavior problems
  • Relationships
  • Stress
  • Suicide ideation and intentional injury
  • Drug or alcohol use
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Attention disorders
  • Pregnancy
  • STDs
  • Eating disorders
  • Body image
  • Sexting
  • Bullying
  • Online victimization