About Katy Teen & Family Counseling
Providing Specialized & Innovative Counseling Services to Teens and Families In Katy Texas and the Houston Area
The vision that started Katy Teen & Family Counseling originated out of observing the increasing needs our teens have presented us as counselors and the challenges family members are facing as a result. Teen depression has increased by 59% in the past 10 years in addition to other mood, emotional, and/or behavior struggles. With this significant increase in teen mental health struggles and the impact on the family, we explored options on how to improve on traditional counseling services and tailor them to teen and family needs.
Our aim is to meet the needs of this current generation of teens who are experiencing this dramatic increase in teen depression and other mood, emotion, and/or behavioral struggles. Some teen and family struggles that we work with are as follows:
Teen Depression can impact an otherwise happy teen and create persistent feelings of sadness, feelings of worthlessness, low self-esteem, lack of energy, and other complicating factors,
Teen Anxiety can create in a teen a sense of fear, uncertainty, hopelessness, low self-esteem and feelings of dread when faced with certain situations,
Teen Trauma & PTSD
Teen Trauma and PTSD are complex struggles. Teen trauma or PTSD is experiencing an event that causes or creates a significant emotional impact or overwhelms our emotional system. Persistent bullying would fit this criteria of teen trauma, being in a car accident, sustaining a non-life threatening injury, losing a loved one, losing a pet, etc. However, what one sees as a traumatic experience another may think nothing of it. Of course, there are those traumatic events that anyone would see as traumatic such as physical, sexual and/or emotional abuse, those who have been in battle, first responders, and so forth.
Teen ADHD can be a very complex and confusing challenge teens face today. The impact it can have on a teens academics is profound. Difficulty concentrating, distractability, loss of focus, impulsivity, all combine to impact grades. Self-esteem and self-worth also take a hit as teachers, church leaders, parents of their friends assign labels to the teen. With teen ADHD, labels such as "lazy", "behavior problem", "challenging", and other labels sink a teen's sense of self. The teen with ADHD has so many strengths that teen ADHD prevents from emerging.
Anger can be a symptom of a deeper, unresolved issue which when teens act out on this anger, leaves them feeling guilty and ashamed as they don't intend to hurt those around them but can't seem to find a pathway forward out of that anger.
Perfectionism among our teens has increased as well and when those unrealistic goals are not achieved, this leaves them with a deep sense of shame.
Teen Bullying/Cyber Bullying
It used to be that home was a safe haven from bullying. In the world of social media, teens cant's always escape the cruel and viscous attacks by their peers as they used to before social media. There are a multitude of ways to humiliate and bully with social media which can have a profound impact on a teens sense of worth as we understand how critical peer acceptance is as a teen.
Teen Academic Performance
With all of the above, academic performance tends to suffer as teens are simply doing the best they can with reduced emotional and mental resources as battling these struggles can feel all consuming at times.
Teen Substance Use
As teens struggle with these intense emotions and look for healthy ways to escape. Not finding an easy, quick healthy way, some teens turn to substance abuse. According to the CDC, among teens, alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana are the most commonly used substances. Roughly 50% of 9th through 12th graders have reported using marijuana. About 40% of the same age group have reported using tobacco and by 12th grade, about 66% of students report trying alcohol.
Substances abuse offers an escape from the intense emotions for a time but the consequences become severe. Yet, once the high has left, shame and guilt settles in creating a cycle of drug use.
Family Struggles - Parents
These are complicated issues that are heart breaking for parents as it can leave us struggling and searching on just how we can help our teens break free of these problems. The problems the teens experience can start to have an impact on the family: The mental, physical, and emotional resources parents have historically had at hand start to diminish.
Parents spend a good amount of those resources worrying about their child and at times, second guessing their ability as a parent. Worrying, wondering, comparing, working to come up with another solution that might help this time. The resources in time, energy, thought, and prayer start to encroach on other aspects of the parent's life where that energy is also needed. Parent's, we don't have an inexhaustible, infinite amount of energy resources at our disposal and sometimes reaching out to share the weight of this struggle can make all the difference in your and your teen's life. Parent can also spend time questioning:
"Am I doing too much?"
Am I not doing enough?
"Am I being to lenient?"
"Am I being to strict"
"Should I give them another chance for trust?"
"Can I not believe a word they say again?"
"Why won't they talk to me?"
"Why won't they stop yelling at me?"
"What did I do this time?"
"What didn't I do this time?
Family Specialists for Katy Texas and the Houston Area
Sometimes as parents we may be too close to the issues at hand to be able to be effective in resolving these issues with our teens. These mood, emotional, and behavioral issues are very complex. Reaching out to a therapist who specializes in teen and family therapy can provide that objective, outside perspective that is needed to help gain traction in the fight to help your teen and your family identify the root cause(s) of the problem, explore and come up with solutions and a pathway forward, and a skilled guide to help lead your teen and family down path of healing and recovery.
How do You Know if You Have the Right Therapist for Your Teen or Family?
As therapists, we are trained in a variety of therapeutic and clinical practices and approaches. At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we use only those therapeutic and clinical approaches that have been supported by research and have been shown to be effective. Some of those approaches include: Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) which is utilized for teen trauma therapy, teen PTSD treatment, teen depression, teen anxiety, panic attacks, etc. Another example is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) which has been the most widely researched therapeutic practice in treating teen depression. We utilized several other therapeutic approaches in our work with teens and families but the most important factor in any therapeutic relationship between the client and the therapist is the the therapeutic relationship its self.
Research shows that above and beyond the clinical and therapeutic practice or approach, the connection between the client and the therapist is an important variable. If your teen 'clicks' with their therapist, the therapeutic and clinical approaches utilized will be exponentially more effective. If your teen does not 'click' with the therapist and isn't a match with the therapist's personality, no matter the therapeutic or clinical approach used, it will be far less effective due to your teen not connecting with the therapist.
At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we have identified this key variable in our therapy sessions as one of the most important variables in accomplishing successful outcomes. That is why we work hard starting at the first phone call on to ensure that you feel comfortable, safe, supported, and heard. We work hard to develop a trusting relationship so that you feel comfortable opening up about difficult subjects when it is necessary -- subjects that may have been unexplored or unprocessed before but are critical to your growth and development. Sometimes, the only way forward is through and we want to ensure your therapist develops the kind of relationship and provides the type of environment in your therapy sessions where you will feel confident and comfortable to move forward.
Reasons Why a Teen or Family May Seek Therapy
First, Destigmatizing Mental Health
In our great American culture, we pride ourselves on rugged individualism, solving our own problems, or solving them with the help of our family, 'pulling ourselves up by our own boot straps', etc. This American culture has resulted in some of the worlds most amazing accomplishments and achievements. Vaccines for viruses, technology and electronics, creating and successfully completing the first artificial heart transplant, and landing a man on the moon just to name a few. One of the drawbacks of this rugged individualism in the midst of all the good and great things that come about due to our culture, is the stigmatization of mental health services.
When we are physically sick or injured, without thinking twice, we will go to the emergency room, InstaCare clinics, and/or our doctors so that they can help use feel better. When we think about emotional struggles however, there is a hesitance to reach out and seek help. There has been a stigmatization of mental health services that leads one to believe that if they are depressed, anxious, having panic attacks, struggling from the after effects of trauma or PTSD, that these are rooted in 'not being strong enough' or some other type of weakness and that we may be judged by others for seeing a therapist.
Treatment Based on Current Science Based Evidence
With the advances of functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scan, and brain mapping utilizing neurofeedback, researchers have discovered and identified that things like teen depression, teen anxiety, panic attacks, after effects of teen trauma or teen PTSD, are rooted physically in the brain. If we don't think twice about seeing a doctor for a physical problem like a sprained ankle that is a purely physical condition, it's important to also take this approach with other physical symptoms that stem from the brain.
At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we utilize the traditional talk therapy approaches as well as Neurofeedback to map the brain and identify specifically and precisely, what part of the brain is not running at optimal levels which may be causing the difficulties your teen may be battling. Once we have pinpointed this area of the brain, we can then develop training protocols to help train the brain to run optimally to reduce or eliminate the symptoms your teen may be experiencing.
We have taken the tried and true approach of traditional therapy (EMDR, CBT, IFS, etc), combined this with cutting edge neuroscience (Neurofeedback) to look at the functioning of the brain, and together, the physical/emotional treatments come together to provide a powerful approach to treatment.
Reasons why teens seek out teen therapy tend to revolve around a noticeable difference in their happiness. Now a day, it is much easier for teens to hide their inner turmoil where those around are unable to notice that something is wrong. Social media results in much of their socialization being online, not face to face with others. As a result, they don't have the in person social interaction necessary to elicit or draw out some of the inner turmoil they may be experiencing. Things like teen depression, teen anxiety, teen trauma, etc. can sit and develop longer and go unnoticed by others around them resulting in increased and prolonged depressive symptoms. This also can happen with teen anxiety, teen trauma, or any other mood or emotional struggle. The sooner one seeks help to address underlying problems, the less intense and prolonged the symptoms will become.
Parents and Therapy
Parents tend to seek out teen counseling or family therapy when they have seen observed a change in their teen's mood and/or behavior, have tried all the parenting skills and tools they have available, and are becoming increasingly concerned with their teens mood and/or behavior. Parents may notice the teen isolating more in their room, their teen glued to their devices much more than before and escaping from life and into social media. Your teen may becoming more irritable, angry, oppositional and it seems like more than just typical teen angst. All these are signs of inner turmoil that the teen is trying so hard to work on and to improve but simply does not know how. Though teens look like and remind us of mini-adults, it would be more accurate to see them as big kids. Their brains are still developing and as a result, they may not know what is wrong and may need help in identifying the root of the problem
Being a parent of teens is a tough job on any good day. When there are emotional and behavior struggles the teen is experiencing, the challenges of parenting multiply exponentially. As therapists and parents ourselves, let us help you, your family, and your teen navigate these troubled waters and provide for you the tools and resources so that your teen and your family can find the happiness and connected relationships you are longing for.
Common Questions to Ask a Prospective Teen and Family Therapist
One of the most important factors or elements that helps people succeed in therapy is not the counseling techniques but rather the relationship its self. You want a therapist who utilizes research supported counseling techniques but if the therapeutic relationship is stale or you don't click with the therapist, the counseling techniques will not be near as effective. The questions below will help you gather information from the counselor so that you can better determine if you will 'click' with them and whether they are qualified to help. Remember, you're hiring someone for a job -- to help your teen through very difficult struggles. You are entrusting them with the most precious part of your life and it the below will help you be better informed when interviewing your therapist.
What is your typical teen client and what is your ideal teen client that you feel you do the best work with?
What is your typical approach for: teen depression, teen anxiety, teen trauma, teen PTSD, gifted students, talented teen athletes, anger -whatever the issue is you're seeking therapy for your teen and family?
Can our family call, text, email you in between sessions should we need to?
Can my teen call, text, email you in between sessions should they need to? (If your teen does contact one of our therapists in between sessions, our therapists will inform you of the contact and a general update regarding the phone call, text, or email).
How do you prefer to communicate outside of sessions?
What type of approaches do you utilize and are they evidence based? (supported by research and shown to be effective)
Will you give us a report of my son's/daughter's progress in therapy?
What is a typical session like and how long are they?
What is your general philosophy in helping people? (are they more directive or collaborative with the teens and families they work with)?
Please feel free to reach out and give us a call and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have to help make this process easier and smoother for you.
What Makes Katy Teen & Family Counseling Unique?
At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we provide a supportive, therapeutic, counseling environment that will provide your teen and your family the optimal conditions to help you be successful. As a result, we have implemented specific elements into our therapeutic approach with teens and families that will help increase your teen and families success.
Led by an Expert & Specialist in Teen & Family Counseling
The owner and Lead Clinician at Katy Teen & Family Counseling is a specialist and leader in the field of adolescent mental health. From the start of his college education, he knew that he wanted to specialize in teen counseling and family therapy and has done so since the start of his career in 2003. As the owner and Lead Clinician at Katy Teen & Family Counseling, he is committed to only bringing on those counselors on who have experience working with teens and families.
Teen & Family Focused Therapy Approach
Our commitment level extends beyond the traditional 1 hour counseling session should teens and families need and want this level of support:
Each counselor maintains a smaller caseload. A smaller caseload means that our counselors can dedicate more of their time to tailor your therapy to meet your families needs.
We work to schedule in a cushion of extra time for your sessions so that when the counselor believes more time is needed, we can often take additional time, up to an additional 30 minutes, without extra cost to you.
Keeping our caseloads small means that we have time during the week, in between sessions, to make ourselves available for phone calls, emails, and/or texts should something arise (during and/or outside normal business hours) and if requested by you.
Maintaining a smaller caseload allows us the flexibility to provide parent coaching outside of the counseling session.
Should something arise and you need to schedule an additional, spontaneous, spur of the moment session, due to smaller caseloads, we can often accommodate those needs.
A smaller caseload provides us the opportunity, should the need arise, to provide in home counseling and/or crisis management.
We are committed to not only provide you and your teen therapy and family counseling services, but to go above and beyond the traditional counseling model and provide you with, in between sessions, our expertise and our specialized resources needed to achieve success. You will always be in control of the level of additional support. It will be there should you need it. For more information, please see the Frequently Asked Questions page.
Begin Counseling Today at Katy Teen & Family Counseling
You have a resource for your teen and family at Katy Teen & Family Counseling. We provide counseling for teens and family therapy in the Katy and the greater Houston area. We specialize specifically in teen and family therapy and have created a model of care that goes above and beyond the traditional, insurance based model of care. Draw on our expertise to help your teen and your family accomplish the goals you set out and recover hope and happiness -- it is possible.
Steps to Start Your Counseling Journey
To start teen and/or family therapy, you can follow these simple steps:
Contact Katy Teen & Family Counseling
Start this journey with confidence knowing you are working with experts who specialize in teen and family therapy and have the years of experience to provide the best care for your teen and family.