Monday, December 13, 2010

Counseling for your Teenager

  I've been asked about finding counselors or doing counseling
As always stated at the bottom of this blog: BAM is not a counseling program. It is to help Moms understand the issues their son is going through and how to adjust to the new teenager in their home.
With this in mind we suggest a few parameters to consider when the situation reaches a point to find professional licensed counselors:
The important aspects of finding a counselor you can trust is to ask them defined questions:
1. Do they have separate - then combined - counseling time for you and your son. In other words do you get to discuss your issues about the relationship for 20 minutes alone with the counselor - then your son gets 20 minutes alone - then a together session for 20 minutes. This is critical.
2. As a percentage; how often have they prescribed anti-depressants and other drugs to help behavior issues. There is not a right or wrong answer but you will get an idea of how they try and solve the problem and if that is a direction you are comfortable with.
3. What is their faith - some psychologist will state it is an unfair question - and that should be a red flag - this again is helping you know what their mode of solving problems is. I don't trust myself to have the answers I trust the Lord - this keeps me accountable and you are looking for that.
4. And most important - how is his or her family life - have the counselor share that - and what ever it is; it helps you know if they understand your situation. If they won't share it...well, that is the guarded relationship they want to have with you which is understandable but is it what you want? This person could have a major impact on the rest of you and your sons life.
5. Pray and go with your first impression of whether or not this is the right person.

There is no fool proof way to insure you find the right counselor but it has proven to be an excellent starting point.
Make sure you have really studied and used your BAM work book - The first step to helping any relationship is to understand the other person and you need to make sure you see your son the same way he sees himself or you will never be able to really help him.

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