When your teenager suffers from mental health disorders, the whole family becomes impacted. For this reason, Zenith Behavioral Health in Phoenix offers teen family therapy as part of our treatment program. This allows everyone in the family to open up and understand how to heal the past and work together towards a brighter future. The family unit can then move forward knowing more effective ways to communicate with each other.
Family therapy involves having multiple members of a family come together in therapy sessions in pursuit of several things. These include learning to communicate with each other in a healthy fashion, working together to solve a family problem, and establishing boundaries among themselves. Teen family therapy centers on helping a teenager who is in distress. The therapist serves as a neutral party who can provide a safe place for everyone to speak openly and candidly.
Sometimes the teenager who is the focus has a specific problem they and their family need assistance in overcoming. This can include a mental health disorder, addiction to drugs or alcohol, or behavioral issues. As well, teen family therapy can prove useful in helping with generalized problems the teenager and family experience. The goal of this kind of therapy is to teach the family how to problem solve in a healthy way both while in sessions and after treatment ends.
Any kind of family therapy generally applies to extended family members, including parents, children, siblings, grandparents, and more. However, the definition of “family” can be extended to include close friends and members of one’s “chosen” family.
Teen family therapy begins with the initial appointment. The therapist will explain to the family why their participation can benefit not only the teenager but the entire family unit. What is expected of them during therapy sessions will be explained, as well as an assurance that what is said during therapy is confidential. For those family members hesitant to commit, the therapist may ask that they attend one or two sessions to get an understanding of how it works. After that, they can decide if they want to continue going.
Teen family therapy proves important when it comes to providing benefits a young person needs in order to move forward. Teenagers often feel unheard or ganged up on by family members, especially when confronted about their behavior or any existing substance use disorder. Family therapy for teens provides a safe place to speak honestly. A skilled therapist will direct the conversation so that everyone has a turn to speak without judgment from others. When teenagers feel people are really listening to them, they are more likely to begin to listen to other people, too.
Another benefit to this type of therapy relates to mental illness, a subject often misunderstood and sometimes even ridiculed. Teen family therapy provides a valuable opportunity for everyone to understand what specific mental health disorder the teenager has and how they can contribute to helping them manage their symptoms. The family, as well as the teenager, learns to replace previous unhealthy reactions with ones that move everyone forward. In fact, because genetics often play a part in the development of mental illness, it may be a prime opportunity to explore and address if other family members might also suffer from a condition like depression or PTSD. This allows families to unite rather than be divided.
If the teenager deals with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, family therapy can help address this. The therapist will help the young person come to terms with the fact that they have a dangerous substance use disorder. Additionally, the family will learn how to come together in order to offer appropriate help while avoiding things like codependent relationships.
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Teen family therapy can address many types of concerns, from diagnosed mental illnesses to addiction. Some of the common behavioral health conditions discussed and treated during this kind of therapy include the following:
Along with these diagnoses, teen family therapy can help families in a more general manner. For example, parents often report a breakdown in communication with their teenagers. This can also extend to a teen having trouble communicating effectively with siblings, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and others. Family therapists help everyone in the family learn how to identify their feelings and express them respectfully and honestly. Often, generational inability to talk with each other can come to an end because the family attends therapy together.
Has your teenage son become swallowed up by mental health challenges and the family is at a loss for what to do? Zenith Behavioral Health in Phoenix knows that when families work together, they can move mountains. Our teen family therapy not only teaches everyone how to help their loved one in treatment but how the entire family unit can progress in positive ways.
If you have a son aged 13 to 17 and want to know more about our teen family therapy program, visit our admissions page now. Our compassionate therapists are ready to help you today.