I was first introduced to group therapy for teens and parent support groups when I started a job as a teen therapist and family counselor at a private, residential treatment center. Every quarter, we would hold a family seminar where parents would fly in. We would use this time to have in person family therapy, multifamily group therapy, and parents support groups.
As a therapist who has facilitated group therapy for teens, I was familiar with how powerful these groups can be for teenagers. While the group is a certain number of teens with similar emotional or behavioral challenges, if facilitated properly, it turns into a positive peer support group.
It's not too uncommon that while facilitating the group, one of the teens in the group will provide a suggestion to another group member. The other group member will take the feedback, talk about how impactful it is, and commit to trying to apply it to their lives.
Meanwhile, as that group members therapist, who has provided the same feedback AND their parents have as well -- without the teenager accepting it -- a teenager in a group suddenly has the impact needed to help them accept it! That's one element of the power of group therapy.
What is Parent Support Group Really Like & What Can I Expect?
Parent support group has similar effects on parents as group therapy does for teenagers. When we hear other people experiencing similar struggles provide feedback and input, it tends to carry more weight.
And the same feelings teenagers feel about attending group for the first time, parents can feel as well:
What will parent support group be like?
Are they going to focus on what I've done wrong?
Will I click with the other people in the group?
Will I click with the therapist facilitating the group?
Does attending group validate that something is wrong with me?
We all, ALL of us, simply do the best we can with the tools, resources, and our own experience we have at the moment. Parenting a struggling teen is complex.
And the parents I have worked with over the years have all approached parenting from a place of love and concern while putting forth their best. And we learn along the way and the parent support group can be another tool to help you feel supported and get some good ideas on how to continue to support your teenager.
Below are 3 key things that many parents will take away from the Katy Teen & Family Counseling Parent Support group:
Being Understood & A Sense of Normalcy
For parents of a struggling teen, it can feel isolating. When we talk to our family and friends about our experience, they may not be able to fully understand. Unless they are a parent of a struggling teen, the nuances of what that means simply hasn't been experienced.
Friends and family love us. They want to convey love and support and help support you and your teen. And in many ways, their support can be very helpful.
In Parent Support group, regardless the struggle, you will hear other parents tell your story. The sense of feeling understood can be healing. In a challenging situation, you can also feel a sense of normalcy.
When other parents talk about handling things in similar ways, experiencing similar feelings, thinking similar thoughts, you come to realize that your process has been "normal" given the challenges you experience.
Gaining a New Perspective
In Parent Support group recently, a parent was talking about a particular challenge she experiences with her son. As the therapist leading the group, I was thinking about different solutions, suggestions, and asking clarifying questions so that I could help.
One of the other parents spoke up and asked the parent if they had ever thought of taking a certain approach with her teenager. The approach was very simple and very doable.
The parent thought about it and stated that she had not thought about that before and that she believes it could help. The parent laughed and made a comment about how she just had never thought about that approach and it was so simple she didn't know why she hadn't thought of it.
This led to further discussions and the parents refined the approach and added to it a bit more to make it more individualized to the parent's son. As parents, we have a lot of answers, and sometimes it's answers from other parents that can put the puzzle pieces together and make a big difference.
Weekly Access to a Teen Therapist, Young Adult Counselor, & Family Therapist -- Just for You
It is less common that parents see a therapist on a regular basis as they are focused on their teenager's growth and success.
I've provided counseling and therapeutic services to teens, young adutls, and families since 2003. As a teen therapist, young adult counselor, and family therapist, I have an additional perspective that can be added to the perspective of the other experts in the group -- you as parents.
And I can provide helpful therapeutic resources that may not be known unless you are a therapist. I can also be reached in between Parent Support groups if something were to come up. You have weekly access to a support that is designated just for you!
Why I Have Chosedn to Start a Parent Support Group at Katy Teen & Family Counseling
Penance for what I put my parents through as a teenager? No . . . well, maybe a bit.
I have had several parents over the last year ask if we were going to start a Parent Support group. I enjoy facilitating groups and seeing the synergy that occurs when parents are helping parents:
Answers that some parents have been looking for are talked about in group.
The feeling of support and normalcy the group can provide is empowering.
The help that a Parent Support group can provide in making a difference in your and your teen's life.
And it is not unheard of for group members to make lifelong friends from these groups.
I know the support that these groups can have and enjoy my role in being able to facilitate this level of support!
Parent Support Group: Katy Teen & Family Counseling
If you have a teenager or young adult who is struggling with anxiety, panic attacks, social anxiety, performance anxiety, depression, and other struggles, Parent Support group can help provide you the support that can help.
If you are ready to start, all you need to do is follow these three simple steps:
Contact Katy Teen & Family Counseling
Talk with or schedule a phone call with one of our Office Administrators
Let us help provide support specifically for you as a parent
Other Therapy and Counseling Services Offered at Katy Teen & Family Counseling
At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we provide a variety of therapy approaches that are supported by research and shown to be effective. Some of the teen therapy and young adult counseling we offer are:
Board Certified Neurofeedback Therapy
Peak performance (optimal academic brain performance)
Peak performance (optimal athletic brain performance)
Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART)
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR Therapy)
Group Therapy for Teens
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Couples Therapy & Marriage Counseling
It can be stressful parenting a struggling teen or young adult. More than anything we want to be able to help them. Sometimes couples may disagree about how to do so. This can inadvertently create stress in a relationship.
And there may be times where the actions of you or your spouse or partner has damaged the trust in your relationship. You want to reestablish the trust in a relationship you have worked hard for over the years.
Relationships are complex and take work. It can be helpful to have an objective, third party who is also experienced in marriage counseling and couples therapy. At Katy Teen & Family Counseling, we also provide couples therapy and marriage counseling.
About the Author
Jason Drake is a Licensed Clinical Worker - Supervisor (LCSW-S), Board Certified in Neurofeedback, EMDR trained, and a Certified Brain Health Professional through the Amen Clinics. He has provided therapy to teens and families since 2003 and is the Owner & Lead Clinician at Katy Teen & Family Counseling.
He specializes in leading teams of high performing therapists who also specialize in teen therapy, family counseling, and counseling young adults.
Jason is also a leader in the field of teen, young adult, and family counseling providing coaching and technical assistance to teen Residential Treatment Centers across the country.
Jason is also a regular contributor to various magazines and publications lending his expertise to various mental health related topics. You can check these articles out on our "Featured Articles" service page on our website.
If you are ready to start your counseling journey, you can schedule a call with one of our Office Administrators by clicking on the button below:
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Phone Number: 346-202-4662