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Navigating the Conversation: Discussing Psychological Support with Your Adolescent

Updated: Mar 18

Therapy for Teen | advice by Elevate Mental Health in Ventura County California
Therapy for Teen | advice by Elevate Mental Health in Ventura County California

Having the conversation about seeking psychological support can be a challenging task. As parents, we often fret about saying the wrong thing or causing further upset. However, approached sensitively, this process can be transformative for your family.

Step 1: Choose the Right Time and Place

Starting the conversation in a comfortable, non-threatening environment can set the scene for a more relaxed discussion. Sometimes, a casual setting like during a drive, or after dinner can be ideal.

Step 2: Be Open and Honest

You might start with something like, "I've noticed you seem to be feeling down/off/angry a lot. Is there something bothering you?" Empathize with their feelings and validate their emotions. Your teen needs to understand that it's okay to experience setbacks and that we all have our low moments.

Step 3: Explain the Importance of Mental Health

Just like we see a doctor for physical ailments, psychologist are there for our mental wellbeing. Helping them understand the significance of mental health is vital--ensure they view seeking help as a sign of strength, not weakness.

Tip: Practice What You Preach-- Show that you take your mental health seriously by sharing your experiences. If you've ever been to therapy, talk to them about it, share why you found it helpful.

Step 4: Involve them in the Process

Empower them by involving them in choosing their own psychologist. This can make them feel like they have some control over the situation.

Tip: Use Resources--Books, online articles, and TV shows can be great resources for entering a conversation. They can help in normalizing therapy and illustrating its benefits.

Step 5: Be Patient

Remember that it's a process. Your teen might be resistant at first. That's okay. Reinforce your concern and love for them and reiterate that you're doing this because you care about their happiness and wellbeing.

Conclusion: Entering a dialogue about psychological support with your adolescent might feel daunting. Nevertheless, it can also mark the beginning of a transformative journey towards better mental health for your teen. Embrace empathy, patience, and persistence. And remember, there's a difference between guiding them and making the decision for them--balance is key. You're trying your best, and that's what matters most.

As always, we are here to serve you in your therapy needs. Please give us a call or email us by clicking the link below and we would be happy to help you get the best next steps to navigating the conversation with your adolescent teen and get the psychological support needed.

Your Team at Elevate Mental Health


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