It is very common for young people to strive to be something that others want them to be or what may be perceived as ‘what other’s want them to be’. In this way, many adolescents , lose their identity and are unclear about who they really are and who they really want to become. Seeking (and receiving) approval from adults and peers can dictate a young person’s perception of themselves.
Young people yearn for protection, love, understanding and safe boundaries even though this may often appear the last thing they desire! In many cases this yearn can be hugely contradicted by young people’s external behaviours. This can potentially make being a parent even harder as parents’ may feel isolated as well as confused, believing they understood the needs of their child, yet the child’s behaviour suggests otherwise.
Talking to a therapist can offer young people a relationship that can help them to get to know the ‘real’ them. The authenticity of each human being, their reality and their life experiences are validated by the therapist. This allows them to find their own answers and identity whilst gaining self-confidence and belief.
Being able to offer young people the additional support of 1-to-1 or group therapy can potentially give them the support network they need. Being understood, heard and supported can help both the child and the family realise they are not alone, different or abnormal and that a potentially healthier future can be achieved.
- Depression, anxiety and behavioural disorders are among the leading causes of illness and disability among adolescents.
- Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among 15-19 year-olds.
- The consequences of failing to address adolescent mental health conditions extend to adulthood, impairing both physical and mental health and limiting opportunities to lead fulfilling lives as adults.