Beginning Psychotherapy

Beginning psychotherapy or counseling is an important step, but often not an easy one. It is quite common to be uncomfortable or at least cautious about starting therapy. Indeed, caution and discomfort can be useful; they can alert us to important aspects of the decision-making process. Some people…

Part IV: Traumatic Family Experiences: Adolescent violence, drug abuse, and “mental illness"

This is the fourth in a series of four articles on adolescence.

I remember the parents well – a middle aged couple, they were very sad and communicated a sense of helplessness. The mother completed their story in a tone of resignation and pain: “The worst is that we cannot…

Part III: The Family at an Impasse: Therapeutic guidelines and practical resources for parents

This is the third in a series of four articles on adolescence.

A family with a teenager in trouble is a family in crisis. Whether there is a daughter who refuses to eat and rapidly loses weight or a rebellious and out-of-control son, whether a teenager seems to oscillate between…

Part II: The Paradox of Adolescence: Integrating Diverging Challenges

This is the second in a series of four articles on adolescence.

Tom, a 14 year old freshman in high school, lately has been surprising his parents with his frequent responses to any requests they have: “Leave me alone!” or “Go away!” or “Why do you bother me all the time?!”…