What to Expect When Bringing Your Teen for Services.


As parents ourselves, we understand that many emotions surface when faced with the suffering of our children.  Guilt, self-judgment, fear, worry and anxiety are common within an already challenging situation. As therapists, the success of our collaboration with you begins with us assuring you that our job is not to judge you, your teen, your family or your choices. We believe that everyone is doing the best they can with what they know and have. We also believe that everyone is able to do better. We hope that sharing our treatment philosophy, formed by our experiences working with teens for decades, will help alleviate some of the understandable emotions attached to bringing your child in for services.

We feel strongly that effective treatment is inclusive of parents and at times, other family members. We have found that when one person is not singled-out, the rate of recovery greatly increases.  Each person within the family can actively contribute to the creation of a  healthy, healing and supportive environment that benefits all. This may require assessments of communication styles, environments, support systems, and parenting styles.

Therefore, the initial assessment will include both the teen and parents, individually and together. Confidentiality will be discussed so that everyone knows what to expect. Managing expectations from the start helps establish trust and supports the therapeutic relationship. Depending on the reported symptoms, a physical by your teen’s pediatrician may be necessary. Your therapist will determine how often parents and/or other family members will need to be included.

Struggles within a family can be isolating; not feeling alone during the process of healing is a goal of ours. With this in mind, we sometimes recommend books, groups to attend, and/or other supportive auxiliary services as needed. Please refer to our Support for Parents page for further information on some options currently available.

It may take a few sessions to create a comprehensive treatment plan that will be shared with everyone, but any plan will initially require the feedback and buy-in of the teen If RO DBT is recommended, then ideally both parents and the teen should attend classes. If logistics do not allow for this, then the presence of one parent and the teen is required. Individual sessions may include a combination of family members.

We encourage you and/or your teen to contact us if there are any questions or concerns.