How to Choose the Right Therapist for Your Struggling Teen
Written by Cristo Rogers, in Section Articles
So, you're in need of finding a therapist for your struggling teenage son or daughter but aren't sure where to look. Not knowing where to turn to for therapeutic help can be stressful- especially for a parent who is clueless as to how to help their suffering child.
Here at Wingate Wilderness, we are interested in more than just advertising our program to prospective parents. Most importantly, we are here to provide assistance to parents and struggling teens in any way we possibly can.
With that in mind, we have created this article to provide parents of struggling teens with factors to consider and essential questions to ask when searching for treatment.
What to Consider When Choosing a Therapist for Your Troubled Teen
- First and foremost, choose a licensed therapeutic counselor who specializes in treating teens, specifically. The teenage brain is different than that of adults. Therefore, it requires specific treatment from a therapist who specializes in navigating the teenage mind.
- Try and seek for referrals. If you know of another parent who has sought treatment for their child, ask them if they have found a therapist that has been effective in treating their son or daughter.
- Do your homework. This means going online and seek for a specialized therapist in your area. Read reviews left by others and check out therapists' education and vocation background, if possible.
- Think about your child's needs and preferences. You want to find a therapist who would be a good 'fit' for your child. Consider the personality of your child. Would your child benefit more from a nurturing and supportive counselor, or would they be better suited with a therapist who is direct and to the point? Does your child have a preference for a male or female therapist? These are all things to consider.
Question Potential Therapists
Finding the appropriate therapist for your troubled teen requires preparation, and preparation requires extensive questioning. Interview potential therapists by e-mail, over the phone or even face-to-face.
To ensure that you are selecting the right therapist for your child, ask them the following questions:
- What is your experience with helping teens who suffer from similar issues my teen is dealing with? - For example, if your teenager suffers from substance abuse and addiction, it is imperative for them to be treated by a therapeutic expert who is experienced in counseling addicted children.
- How long have you been a therapist?
- Will other family members be involved in my teen's therapeutic process?
- Are you a member of a professional organization?
By taking the time to research and question potential therapists, you are ensuring that your child is getting the very best treatment because you made an effort to make sure. Your troubled teenage boy or girl might not thank you now, but your due diligence as a parent (especially when times are tough), might just save your child's life.
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A skilled therapist can support and help your teen deal with the problems they are having. There are a variety of therapists who work with teens, so it’s helpful to know what to look for in finding the best fit for your troubled teen.