Adolescent Psychotherapy

Written by Eileen Hopkins

My road to counselling and psychotherapy has been interesting. Having worked in a caring profession, nursing for over 30 years, I was always at my happiest when interacting with my patients & I have always been a people person.

Adolescent Psychotherapy/Counselling

Adolescent and young adult mental health is about more than solving today’s problems. It’s also about learning the skills and developing the insight needed to become successful adults.

Teenage years are an essential time for self-discovery, identity formation, and social development. Even pre-pandemic, with raging hormones, spiralling emotions, strained family relationships, and school pressures, most teenagers experience inner conflict, frustration, and doubt as they attempt to cope with peer relationships, school demands, difficult decisions, and complicated family dynamics.

Sometimes they feel like they are alone or that no one understands them, intensifying the challenges they face and their sense of overwhelming stress, which we might eventually call depression or anxiety. During this age, adolescents may isolate themselves from their loved ones, making it challenging for families to connect or communicate their support.

Just like the rest of us, teens have not been sheltered from the relentless life changes thrust upon us during the pandemic. They’ve questioned the future just as much as we have— what about having to deal with body image issues? What about the loss of the child self, and finding their place in society? What about social media, online bullying, sexting, parent separation and increased choice. The difficulty of growing though these challenges is increased when a teen also has mental health needs.

How does Adolescent Psychotherapy differ from Adult Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy with Adolescents looks a lot like individual Psychotherapy. The Adolescent will meet with Eileen, an experienced Psychotherapist who has special training in working with adolescents. The Psychotherapist works with the adolescent each week to learn strategies to manage their stress, providing them with a safe place to process through their emotions. Eileen helps the adolescent address their immediate mental health needs and developmental challenges, so they are prepared to flourish as adults.

Everyone who comes to therapy presents with different concerns and needs, because of this Eileen brings a unique combination of therapeutic approaches and skills to each session. These approaches include humanistic & existential therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, motivational interviewing, Compassionate Inquiry, mindfulness, art, and sand tray therapy as well as others. Eileen has extensive training and experience working with teens who misuse substances or have been negatively affected by the substance use of important relatives.

Here are some common signs that your teenager may benefit from psychotherapy:

  1. They seem to be self-isolating from you and from their friends
    2. Stress, anxiety, and consistently worries about the future
    3. You notice more frequent anger outbursts or irritability
    4. Extended grief and sadness about losses, threats of self-harm
    5. Problems with school or increased defiance at home
    6. Trouble sleeping, low self-esteem, or other symptoms of depression

Health Insurance

Your health insurance cover may cover the cost of your therapy or part of it, so please check with your insurer before commencing.


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