Encouraging Your Teen’s Creativity

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

How do you support your teen’s creative expression? – Sandra

There is a whole population of creative children gifted with the ability to dance, sing, paint, draw, write music, play instruments, and express themselves. Not everyone is meant to be a dentist, lawyer, engineer, scientist, or accountant. Yet, the drive is to prepare teenagers to enter college, and artistic endeavors are considered less worthy of classroom time or school funding.

Some adolescents are academically oriented, and can thrive in the classroom. But others perceive life through colors, sound, images and movement. For them, the highlight of their day may be watching an amazing sunset, dancing to a fantastic musical arrangement, or singing the lyrics of a song that speaks to them.

All teenagers want and need to feel masterful in some way. How are we honoring a teen’s authentic self-expression if we are asking them to fit into a mold that does not value their talents? What message are we giving to these artists?

In this fast changing world, future jobs that today’s youth will hold may not as yet exist. If teens are not forced into a mold of their parent’s or society’s design, then I believe their natural inclinations towards exploration and resourcefulness will be maintained. Parents who support their child in finding ways to honor their creative expression are giving their child the gift of a lifetime.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

A Cure for Teen Bullying

A Note From The Los Angeles Teen Therapist

Everyone deserves to be treated with respect. Read on to learn effective options for dealing with bullying. – Sandra

Did you know that feelings are our body’s way of keeping us alert to our safety? The primitive reptilian part of our brain needs to be guided by the reasoning part of our brain. Emotion gets our attention, but then what we do with that information determines the success of the outcome.

Teens, although highly vulnerable to slights, are quick to dish them out. Testing each other, and the world, they are often uncensored in their expression. It is important to help teens process and digest their experiences, that they might grow from them.

Teachers, parents, classmates and siblings have all been known to say things that were experienced as hurtful. By teaching teens how to slow down and tolerate their immediate discomfort, they can begin to understand what they are feeling, and think about how they want to respond.

Unless a fellow classmate is pathologically disturbed, simple techniques like using humor or walking away have turned around a good number of “bullying” situations. By helping the teen understand what the taunting means to them, we also have an opportunity to address underlying self-esteem issues that existed long before a particular insult was delivered.

Bottom line, life is not always fair and not everyone will like us. The capacity to accept oneself and to be comfortable in one’s own skin is invaluable in living in a world of diversity–where differences in preference and opinions abound.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Spend Quality Time With Your Teen

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

To improve your parent-child relationship, I recommend this 20 minute daily activity. – Sandra

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Set aside 20 minutes a day where there are no interruptions. Turn off cell phones and try to pick a time when you do not have other things that either of you need to be doing.

2. Let your teenager know that this time will be your special time together, and that you have no expectations on how this time will look.

3. Follow your adolescent’s lead. Talk about whatever they want to talk about. Discover what they want from you during this time. Do they want you to admire them? Respond to them but do not take over and direct them.

4. Watch, wait and wonder about what your teen is telling you. Enter their world and reflect on their experience of life.

5. Avoid giving advice or showing displeasure with what they are offering to share with you.

6. Instead, make observations and/or ask questions about what you hear. (”You sound proud of yourself. What are you planning to do next?”)

7. Have fun. Try to give yourself over completely to the enjoyment of a glimpse into your teenager’s life. You will only find it boring if your mind is stuck in the adult world. Try to be entirely present with your teen. Your adolescent will tell you a lot about themselves and their world if you allow yourself to be receptive.

8. Remember this is not a teaching time. Try to avoid praising or criticizing. You want the motivation of making good choices to ultimately come from within the teenager rather than through praise or punishment.

9. Sometimes, these conversations may elicit strong reactions or uncomfortable feelings on the part of the parent. These reactions may be helpful to reflect on in a supportive setting, like with a parent educator, therapist or another parent you feel safe with. It is important to understand what your feelings mean in regards to your relationship with your child.

10. Try to spend quality time every day, particularly during times of stress in the teen or family’s life.

Last, but not least, make sure to also leave 20 minutes a day for yourself to rest, relax, and do something just for you. (Catching up on household tasks does not count) This time allows you to restore yourself.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Inspire Your Teen To Cooperate

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

Have you noticed how the parent-child connection is often at the heart of your teen’s willingness to cooperate with you? – Sandra

Too frequently, I see parents using rewards and punishment to influence their teen’s behavior, often resulting in power struggles and resentment – on both parts. It is also not uncommon for parents to repeat the parenting responses they saw modeled by their own parents.

In my Effective Parenting of Teens Class, I teach parents about secure and insecure attachment styles, and how to apply this knowledge in their relationship with their teen. Each week, we work on very practical applications of this knowledge with examples from their day-to-day life.

I help parents slow down, and become curious about what their teen’s behavior may say about what they are needing in that moment. Although is is appropriate to set boundaries and have expectations for a teen’s behavior, it is also important to utilize your relationship with them to teach alternative ways of responding to their challenges.

Parents need an environment where they feel understood and not judged. In discussing sensitive family topics, I demonstrate to parents what responsiveness and sensitivity to their teen looks like through kind and respectful interactions with them.

 

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Initial Consultation.

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Tips On Parenting Teenagers

A Note From The LA Teen Therapist and Life Coach

Parenting teens is an entirely different job than parenting small children. – Sandra

Parents must make the transition from being a parent who provides for all their child’s needs to one who coaches their teen to handle their frustrations and needs for themselves. The challenge is how to deal with the willfulness, clinging, or the demands typical of this period.

Parents need to be able to respond to their teen in ways that affirm the dignity and power of both parent and child. The parent who cannot tolerate their teen choosing to defy them, by wanting to do things independently of their parents, will make that child feel as though the price of their autonomy is the loss of love.

Successful navigation of this phase of life involves setting boundaries and enforcing consequences without becoming punitive, angry, or judgmental. Respectful parenting involves seeing the frustrations teens encounter when pushing against imposed boundaries as opportunities for them to exercise the muscles of self-control, self-respect, and respect for others.

The parenting role must shift during the teen years to supporting their growing independence and preparing them to meet the challenges & frustrations of daily life. Your responsibility as a parent is to teach your child the skills they will need to succeed in the world prior to leaving your home. Respectful, conscious and positive parenting is fair, flexible, and has learning, rather than submission as its goal. Every word, facial expression, gesture, or action on the part of a parent gives the child some message about self-worth.

Hearing and respecting feelings, allowing choice, yet setting fair and clear limits on unacceptable behavior is the healthy balance that we should all strive for. Some parents use authoritarian parenting strategies that do not allow the child an independent voice or sense of efficacy. Other parents overcompensate with overly permissive parenting that doesn’t teach kids about limits and self-control. Research shows both extremes can interfere with kids’ ability to regulate their emotions and form healthy relationships as adults. Learning to cope with uncomfortable feelings is a crucial part of developing into a mature adult. 

… EMPOWERING TEENS TO BE THEIR BEST SELVES.

“The best example of Sandra’s work is in my daughter’s renewed enthusiasm and attitude towards life. My daughter now sees every problem as one that can be solved, every uncomfortable experience as an opportunity to learn and grow. Sandra’s work with my daughter has helped her become a more secure, confident and happy individual.”

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Maximizing Your Teen’s Cooperation

family problems

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

Your teen is in the process of learning how to tolerate and digest their uncomfortable feelings, so be sure to give them the space to do this. – Sandra

Sometimes parents need to act as their teen’s surrogate frontal lobe by helping them name their feelings, explore options, and figure out if solutions agreed upon take both party’s needs into consideration. For a teen to be able to participate successfully in conflict-resolution discussions with you, they must first:

  • Be able to identify and articulate their concerns.
  • Be able to consider a range of possible solutions.
  • Be able to reflect on the likely outcome of those solutions, as well as the degree to which they are mutually satisfactory.

How can you help your teen gain the skills of flexibility, adaptability, frustration tolerance and conflict resolution? By involving them in the decision-making process in a collaborative way. Explosive behavior occurs in teens when the demands of the environment exceed their capacity to respond adaptively.

Here is a list of video tutorials explaining Collaborative Problem Solving, a new approach to working with challenging behavior in teens.

1. Kids Do Well if They Can — The most important premise of Collaborative Problem Solving is the belief that if kids could behave better they would.

2. What’s Your Explanation? — Your explanation for your teen’s explosive behavior has major implications for how you respond and whether you’ll try to help.

3. Three Options for Solving Problems — There are three ways in which adults try to solve problems with reactive kids: Plan A (which is unilateral problem solving), Plan C (dropping the problem completely), and Plan B.

4. Collaborative Problem solving aka Plan B — Tips on identifying the unresolved problems that are precipitating challenging episodes, and how to implement Plan B.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Teens: On How To Deal With Bullies

A Note From The Los Angeles Teen Therapist and Life Coach

Click on the arrow above to watch the video. Read on to learn about dealing with bullies. – Sandra

“I’m being bullied at my school but am too afraid to tell a teacher or friend for fear it might make it worse. What can I do to make them stop?”

There is a very old saying that goes “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” Of course words can hurt your feelings! But what this means is you have a choice over how you think about the words said about you.

The purpose of someone saying mean things to you is to upset you. My question to you is do you think what they are saying about you is true? If not, then make believe you don’t hear them and just walk away.

If the insult is about something true, try finding humor in it. Nobody is perfect, and we all have our little imperfections and faults. One way to get around the challenge of mean words is to turn them into a joke. “Hah, hah, very funny.”

Unfortunately, name calling is a very normal experience in childhood, which can continue into adulthood. Therefore, it is extremely helpful to develop a good sense of humor and be able to laugh about yourself.

The best way to make a bully stop teasing you is to not give the name-caller the satisfaction of seeing you upset. By taking away their sense of power over you, the game stops being fun for them.

Just know that the teasing may not go away immediately, as the bullies will continue test you to see if they can still make you react. The key to your success is to be totally consistent in how you respond.

*Note: If your teen is being bullied, I can help to empower them and turn the situation around. I invite you take that critical next step, and allow me to demonstrate the support I can offer to you and your family.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Teaching Teens Life Skills

A Note From The Los Angeles Teen Therapist and Life Coach

The following are some teen skills that teens will need to know to succeed in the world. – Sandra

CAN YOUR TEEN DEMONSTRATE THE FOLLOWING LIFE SKILLS?

  • Expressing feelings appropriately
  • Making a sincere apology
  • Resisting peer-pressure while maintaining dignity with peers
  • Maintaining proper and appropriate hygiene
  • Using proper table manners
  • Planning and preparing a meal
  • Managing time effectively
  • Being a smart consumer
  • Using conflict resolution techniques to avoid arguments
  • Maintaining proper boundaries with others
  • Minimizing the chances of becoming a victim of crime
  • Handling emergency situations
  • Knowing how to act and what to say during a job interview
  • Earning, saving and spending money responsibly
  • Being able to recognize a person of poor character

If not, you may want to consider setting aside a portion of time each week to discuss and teach these skills to your teen. The best way to approach the subject is by creating a heartfelt discussion. You want to make this a positive experience for your teen.

Implementing these concepts can take some time, and will vary substantially depending on the emotional maturity of your child. Please don’t feel like you have to tackle them all at once. Try setting aside 20 minutes at a time each week where there are no interruptions, and have fun with the process.

… EMPOWERING TEENS TO BE THEIR BEST SELVES.

“The best example of Sandra’s work is in my daughter’s renewed enthusiasm and attitude towards life. My daughter now sees every problem as one that can be solved, every uncomfortable experience as an opportunity to learn and grow. Sandra’s work with my daughter has helped her become a more secure, confident and happy individual.”

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Teen Therapist’s Book Reviewed

 A Note From The Los Angeles Teen Therapist and Life Coach

I gently guide teens in a direction that gets them thinking about who they truly are, what they want, and how to express themselves with kindness and grace. – Sandra

In her book, What Would Your Teen Therapist Say?: A Workbook For Discovering Your True Self-Expression (Volume 1), Los Angeles-based teen therapist Sandra Dupont presents weekly tasks and then provides space for her reader to work through the process in writing.

Thought-provoking themes in the workbook include listening closely to your conversations to make sure you’re saying what you really mean; paying attention to how you spend your time to determine the worthiness of those activities; examining your belief system to see if it still fits; or asking if your friends support you and your dreams.

She also asks the reader to identify inspirational or teachable moments in their own lives, challenges them to find success in their failures, and encourages them to share the gift of their own wisdom with others.

Each weekly lesson prompts the reader to answer questions or imagine various scenarios, some of which are designed to focus on the positive or help the reader develop courage and confidence. The exercises are not always introspective. The teen therapist also asks her readers to find ways to give from the heart, and think about how they can make a difference in the world.

For teens in need of guidance during one of the most difficult transitions in life, this book will help them to become independent, self-aware and self-fulfilled young adults.” by Cameron James–Freelance Writer

… EMPOWERING TEENS TO BE THEIR BEST SELVES.

“The best example of Sandra’s work is in my daughter’s renewed enthusiasm and attitude towards life. My daughter now sees every problem as one that can be solved, every uncomfortable experience as an opportunity to learn and grow. Sandra’s work with my daughter has helped her become a more secure, confident and happy individual.”

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

The “Loneliness Cure” for Teens

bigstock-Teenagers-playing-tug-of-war-27385718

Times have changed from when kids would walk out their front door and go visit with the neighborhood kids.

 

It’s not enough to have a ton of “friends” on Facebook, followers on Instagram, or be known by numerous people (for one can feel isolated even in a crowd, or alone within their own family). At the same time, with only a few trusted, heartfelt connections, one can enjoy time in solitude, and not feel lonely. It’s really all about the quality of the connection.

Which is why the Teen Years are so important for cultivating the skills of authentic connection. It’s not about being the most popular, talented, smartest or prettiest. It’s about learning how to find your tribe, and build connections that suit you. This begins by slowing down long enough to know who you are (deep down inside), and cultivating the courage to share that with others.

So much of today’s social media is hype: Using filters to enhance your image, picking the best “selfie” out of the bunch to share, editing your words until they sound perfect, or only talking about the good things happening in your life. This can leave many young people feeling inadequate compared to these doctored personas, leading to insecurity, self-loathing and isolation.

We need to help today’s young people to understand that there was a world that existed before the hype, where people formed bonds based on shared interests and an investment in creating a safe space to share yourself, imperfections and all. Feeling lonely in inevitable at various times in our lives. But there is a cure … in learning how to build heartfelt connections.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Why Today’s Young-Adults Are Struggling

4kidshugging
A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

My very first clients in my Teen Therapy practice are now young-adults.

Many clients have continued to return as they have encountered new developmental challenges; like leaving for college, their first apartment, their first job, and their first love.

Over the span of 15 years, I have noticed a growing trend that I find concerning. These young people are getting burnt-out, over-stimulated by the bombardment of information and constant connection available through technology. Add to this the concerted effort they just put in to create the perfect college application, SAT scores, essays and grades, and you have a recipe for them shutting down, or tipping over, as they enter or leave college.

I’ve witnessed many bright college students, who successfully completed AP courses and got accepted to top name schools, failing out of their first year. Unfortunately, they never cultivated the social and emotional coping-skills necessary to thrive, as they were too busy to truly examine what wasn’t working in their lives, and how they might respond more effectively. Pushing to always “do” more, they lost their ability to self-reflect along the way.

So they turned to drugs, video-games, binge-watching Netflix, and casual sex to distract themselves from their stress. These ineffective coping skills are then carried into their college classwork, relationships, and jobs. Thus, the haven’t learned to tolerate the boredom of a repetitious task. They haven’t cultivated the patience to wait for a desired outcome. They don’t yet know how to communicate their wants and needs in a graceful manner, so they blow-up relationships with bosses, coworkers and friends, or worse, they suffer in silence.

Clearly, this is not true for every young-adult. But there are many who are suffering. If you are a parent reading this, you know what I’m referring to. Life is not the same as when you were growing up. Children are expected to prepare for college starting as early as middle-school. After-school sports no longer teach team-building skills for the average athlete, but are instead gateways for athletic scholarships. Summers are used to pad college applications with internships, jobs and advanced classes. Kids are being pushed to excel just to earn a chance at a college admission.

In my experience, it’s clear that today’s youth are missing out on opportunities that help cultivate their character strengths, social, and emotional intelligence. This is what I am advocating. This is what I’m offering. This is why I say that there isn’t a young person in America today, who wouldn’t benefit from working with a mentor, coach, or therapist.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

LA Teen Therapist Encourages Mutual Respect

happy-teens
A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

I feel it is essential to model to our future generations how to live together in peace. Towards this end, I devote my days to teaching parents and teens how to respond to each other in conscious and respectful ways. – Sandra

The reason I offer a FREE Initial Parent Consultation is to confirm that I am a good match for your family. If your family is in crisis, I often suggest we meet once a week with the teen, and once a week with the parents–for about 6 weeks. In this manner, I am can do a thorough assessment of the situation and give you my most helpful recommendations.

During this time, you will get an immediate and direct experience of the value I provide. I try to make the experience uplifting as well as educational. My intention is to guide you in ways you can support your teen, with the focus on solutions that will unite the family, rather than assigning blame. There is an inner experience that is driving your teen’s behavior, and my goal is to help uncover and address it, to thus allow the healing of their pain.

In closing, my world travels, together with my work as a teen therapist, have exposed me to people of many backgrounds. What I have learned from my experiences both abroad and locally, is that each individual carries the desire to feel connected and loved … and we are not different in matters of the heart. Thus, the pervading theme of my work has been encouraging the practice of kindness within your family and community.

I leave you with one of my favorite quotes from Gandhi. “I honor the place within you where the entire Universe resides; where, when you are in that place in you, and I am in that place in me, there is only one of us.” Namaste.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Teens Coping With Anxiety

Teen doing yoga

A Note From The LA Teen Therapist

If your teen stressed out or anxious about school or friends, I can help them learn to self-soothe and self-reflect. – Sandra

When a teen is willing to talk about their fears and anxieties, I try to listen carefully and respectfully, without discounting their feelings. I help them understand that increased feelings of judgement and/or embarrassment about their body, performance, and peer relationships are fairly common in adolescence.

Some teens are naturally more shy and quiet than others. As their bodies, voices, and emotions are going through changes, this population may become even more self-conscious. In extreme cases, the adolescent may isolate themselves, unable to overcome their intense feelings of self-doubt and worry.

By encouraging your teen to examine their situations and experiences, I help them reduce the overwhelming nature of their feelings. Although their concerns may be real, there are techniques I can teach them to better manage their stress and anxiety.

Extreme anxiety in teens often benefits from a therapeutic intervention. Talk therapy, role-playing, conscious breathing exercises can help turn this painful situation around. An effective treatment plan is individualized to your teenager and family. While anxiety disorders can cause considerable upset in your teen’s life, the prognosis is very good.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Initial Consultation.

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

6-Week Parenting Teens Classes

Woman Helping Daughter with Homework

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

“Raising a teenager can be extremely rewarding, exciting, and at the same time, very challenging.” – Sandra

During the often‐trying teen years, it is not uncommon for parents to feel they are failing in their child‐rearing responsibilities. But with the right approach, you can build healthier relationships with your teen and guide them on the path to becoming valued contributors to the community.

My parenting classes are private, and individually tailored to meet each family’s needs. I teach about creating healthy attachment styles, as well as have you reflect upon how the way in which you were parented. Together, we create a timeline representing their child’s journey, and look at how their past experiences may have impacted their development, and current behavior.

We typically meet for six sessions, during which I will give you reading assignments to complete before each session. In each session we examine specific challenges the you are facing with your teen, and I will coach on how to better understand and approach these challenges.

Learn how to strengthen your relationship with your teen while increasing cooperation, harmony, and happiness within the family.

Topics include:

  • Understanding Yourself and Your Teenager
  • Improving Your Response to Your Teen
  • How to Communicate Respect and Understanding
  • Encouraging Cooperation and Problem‐Solving
  • Using Consequences to Build Responsibility

By the end of this intensive 6‐week course, you will be able to help your teenager become more responsible, communicative and independent.

**Recommended for parents with children between the ages of 11 and 19.

I propose a style of interaction with your teen that honors the authority of the parent while accommodating the teen’s need for personal autonomy. Families facing serious problems will be empowered by proven parenting strategies that can truly make a difference in their lives!

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Initial Consultation.

ADOLESCENT THERAPIST | PARENT COACH | TEEN MENTOR

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Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

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The Benefits of Teen Therapy

handonshoulder

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

Is teen therapy a necessity, luxury, or perhaps a stepping stone to well-being and success? – Sandra

It is not uncommon for parents to seek that cutting edge experience that will boost their teen’s self-esteem, motivation and character. From private tutors, to semesters abroad, parents look for ways to provide their child everything they need to succeed.

In the time of Freud, talk therapy was available only to the select few who could afford it. Self-reflection, through the process of talking to a trained professional, resulted in greater self-awareness and self-acceptance. Symptoms that had long plagued clients were eliminated, as clients came to understand the purpose those symptoms served, and integrate their life experiences.

Today, many parents hesitate to take their teen to a therapist to address the issues that may be impacting their teen’s performance, or quality of life, afraid that they will be labeled problem kids or emotionally disturbed. Yet, if your teen is struggling, a specialist in teenagers can help you to discover the cause and address it.

The reason I offer a free initial parent consultation is to assess the challenges your family is dealing with, and offer my best recommendations on how to remedy the situation.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Choosing A Teen Therapist

A Note From The Los Angeles Teen Therapist

In choosing a therapist for your teenager, you want someone with experience in working with complex teenage issues and family dynamics – Sandra

It is important to choose a therapist who not only has an understanding of adolescent phase of life challenges, but can work masterfully with families in conflict, and support the parents in setting limits. Try to find a therapist with whom you, the parent, feel comfortable and well understood, as you will be trusting them to guide you in the care of your child.

Learn how the therapist will handle keeping you updated about your teen’s process and progress. As your child’s advocate, their job is to join with your teen, that they might learn about, and advise you, on your child’s needs. Ideally, they act as a bridge between the two of you.

Although therapists “in training” are required to spend 500 hours working with children and families, not all therapists have experience working directly with the teen population. Because teens have a developmental journey all their own, that differs significantly from a small child or young adult, it is important that the therapist you choose has a thorough understanding of this phase of life, and it’s associated risks and challenges.

It is important to examine your readiness to embrace the changes that may be necessary for you, your teen, and your family to make, for Teen Therapy is a collaborative relationship. Since you, the parent, will need to reinforce the therapist’s work in your home, additional parent coaching work may be indicated to support you in setting and maintaining firm boundaries, as well as helping to heal the relationship between you and your teen.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Is Your Teen Depressed?

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A Note From The LA Teen Therapist

Teen depression seems to be on the increase. What is causing this epidemic in our teenagers? ~ Sandra

During the teenage years, the pressure to conform with their peers can be incredibly strong. Social media, advertising and television are all telling kids how they are supposed to look and feel, and what is important in life.

A teen’s natural expression, talents, achievement and character can look inadequate next to trends being promoted through social media. Kids who feel different or deprived may spiral down into self-judgement, and loathing. Depression has been the result of changes in our society where a teen’s needs for companionship, healthy goals, responsibility, connection to others and life-meaning are not being met.

Parents are often distressed by their teen’s pain, and lack of interest in activities. Yet, pushing for a different outcome without addressing the cause simply creates more pressure, and distance between the parent and their child. According to Dr. Andrew Weil, “The idea that one must be, and look, endlessly cheerful is a destructive and daunting expectation for teens. In actuality, it is perfectly normal to experience “the blues.” He went on to suggest that kids need to learn that happiness is not some end point to be achieved, but rather something that occurs in moments … and that more a more effective goal is to seek a sense of peace and contentment through life’s ups and downs, learn how to see and accept life as is, and find ways to respond appropriately to each situation.

It is important for parents to make a distinction between Situational Depression; a normal reaction to stressful situations or losses, and Clinical Depression; believed to be caused by brain chemistry and not related to external situations. Regardless of the cause, it can be beneficial for teens to work through these periods with help from a trained professional. Emotional well-being means learning how to find resilience, contentment, comfort, and serenity among the various expressions of one’s moods. This is a journey that occurs as one matures. If your teen is in crisis, I would be happy to asses the situation and help remedy it.

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Worried About Your Teen? FREE Initial Consultation

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

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Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Parenting Teens With ADD

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A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

It can be challenging to keep your teen on course with all they need to learn in order to become an independent young adult. – Sandra

Unfortunately, angry and irritated responses on your part do nothing to motivate your teen, and only serve to damage your connection with each other. You are both better served by trying to understand why your teen is giving up so easily, such that you might help remedy the problem.
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It is important for your teen to discover how to harness their strengths, to help him/her move towards their dreams. Teens often do not understand the reasoning behind the general education classes, assignments and tests they are required to complete. For teens with learning challenges, it can be like trudging through molasses to turn in assignments. Your teen desperately needs you to understand why he/she is struggling, accept that they are doing the best they are able to do in this moment, and guide them in how they can do better.
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A goal in my working with teens with ADD is to assist your teen in moving beyond their frustrated or defiant stance about school. A tough love approach usually does not work because frustration, not love, is speaking. Teens do best when they feel supported and connected. also, please know that ADD is not a quick fix. Patterns of reaction may be in place between the two of you, as well as with your teen and their schoolwork, that will need to be turned around.
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Parents need to be able to enter into open discussions with their teen where they can discover what their child is feeling, as well as help their child explore their feelings of frustration and upset. Perhaps it’s time for you and your teen to have a chat with the academic counselor at their school about their homework challenges, that the counselor might help you explore options for making up any missed work. Your teen may need to go early to school, stay late, or miss lunch break to complete those assignments.
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It is also not your fault that your teen is struggling. You do not have to feel you must act angry in order to express the seriousness of your concern. Anger can feel like a retaliation for not pleasing you, and confuses the issue altogether. His/her not doing their homework is not a personal defiance of you. It is a cry for help.
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Your teen’s hope and enthusiasm, as well as his/her sense of capability need to be intact as they leave school to finally enter the world. Battles over homework will not accomplish that. There is a better way…..

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Is Your Teen A Perfectionist?

 A Note From The Los Angeles Teen Therapist

Highly intelligent and creative teens can find themselves struggling to fit in with their peers. – Sandra

The National Association of Gifted Children came out with a list linking characteristic strengths of gifted children with possible problems that might develop.

Because of the difference between their conceptual abilities and their actual development, highly intelligent teens are able to envision outcomes that they are, as yet, unable to perform. Therefore, they frequently end up feeling frustrated and discouraged when learning new things.

By projecting “perfectionism” onto everything they do, these unrealistic self-expectations can result in feelings of inadequacy. Able to anticipate the challenges in new experiences, they can become hesitant to try new things for fear of failing.

Gifted teens can also be hypersensitive to noise, light and the emotions of others, sometimes causing overreaction and difficulty in social settings. These teens often find it easier to be in the company of people older than them.

HELPFUL HINTS:

  • Common interest groups can be helpful for meeting other teens with similar experiences.
  • Parents can help their children to understand and digest their life experiences.
  • Professionals can help normalize your teen and family’s experience.

RESOURCES:

**Note: If your teen is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it. I invite you take that critical next step, and allow me to demonstrate the support I can offer to you and your family.

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Parent Consultation

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

verified by Psychology Today

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.

Teen Social Skills Coaching

A Note From the LA Teen Therapist & Life Coach

Does your teen have the social skills that will lead them to success?  – Sandra

Have you noticed that there is a growing trend of teens struggling with social skills and good exacerbated by the explosion of technology and the over-reliance on electronic devices to socially connect? More than ever before, there is an increasing need for social skill-building experiences for these young people.

I work with socially anxious adolescents to identify areas where they can improve their social skills, and then teach them tips and tricks to improve those skills. I can help your teen learn how to gain and keep more friends, as well as become more confident in social situations.

The value of your teen working with me privately, rather than in a group setting, is that I can give them direct feedback specific to their situations, as well as create exercises, role-playing and homework to will help them achieve their personal goals. The teens that have worked with me report greater peace and satisfaction in their social lives.

TOPICS COVERED INCLUDE:

  • First Impressions
  • Reaching Out to Others
  • Managing Peer Conflict
  • The Art of Conversation
  • Becoming More Assertive
  • Communicating Your Needs
  • Establishing Firm Boundaries
  • Helpful Responses to Bullying

I usually work with teens for 6 to 10 consecutive weeks, depending on the desired result. Some teens prefer to meet  twice weekly to obtain a more rapid outcome. My style of working with a teen is collaborative and fun. Although I respect that the challenges they may be experiencing are serious, I have found that a joyful atmosphere makes the learning feel more uplifting and comfortable.

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… One Success Story

“The best example of Sandra’s work is in my daughter’s renewed enthusiasm and attitude towards life. My daughter now sees every problem as one that can be solved, every uncomfortable experience as an opportunity to learn and grow. Sandra’s work with my daughter has helped her become a more secure, confident and happy individual.”

Worried About Your Teen? FREE Initial Consultation.

ADOLESCENT THERAPIST | PARENT COACH | TEEN MENTOR

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Providing service for: Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Beverly Glen, Culver City, Brentwood, Westwood, Marina Del Rey, Mar Vista, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Topanga Beach and Topanga Canyon, Ocean Park, Hancock Park, West Hollywood.