My Teen Isn’t Thriving

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

If a teen isn’t thriving, it’s important for parents to reach out and consult with a professional — that they might understand why. – Sandra

Often, parents contact me expressing concern about their child’s behavior. Some complaints I’ve commonly heard are:

* Isolating in their room
* Angry all the time
* Explodes at the drop of a hat
* Swings between happiness and hopelessness
* Too shy to make friends
* Not able to keep up with their schoolwork

Each of these situations may have a different cause, and require a different approach. One of the first things I do after getting the call is to invite the parents in for a free parent consultation to explore the teen’s history. I want to fully understand their journey thus far.

When did the symptoms first occur?
What efforts were made to help the situation?
What worked, and why?
What didn’t work, and why?

For it is only through understanding what has led up to this moment that I can make my best recommendations for putting together a plan that will result in a more permanent solution.

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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.

Respectful Parenting of Teens

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A Note From the Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Were you aware that your parent-child connection is at the heart of your teen’s willingness to cooperate, and adhere to your limits? – Sandra

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

My job is to help parents slow down and become curious about what their teen’s behavior may say about what they are needing in that moment. Although it is definitely appropriate to set boundaries and have expectations for your teen’s behavior, it is also essential to teach them helpful ways of responding to their frustrations and challenges.

I provide parents with a safe environment where they can feel understood. Through discussing sensitive or heated topics with the parents of teens, I have a wonderful opportunity to give these parents a direct experience of what sensitivity and responsiveness to their teen can look like.

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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 Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Teen depression seems to be on the rise, affecting one out of every 20 teenagers. What is the cause … and what is the solution? – Sandra

During the teenage years, the pressure to conform with their peers can be incredibly strong. If kids feel different, inadequate or deprived in some way, then feelings of self-loathing and depression may be the result. With Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram so prevalent, teens are being bombarded with images that they feel they need to live up to.

There are also increasing concerns about competition for college, and the endless hours that are going into creating the perfect resume with extracurricular activities and advanced coursework. Today’s adolescents are exhausted, overwhelmed and breaking down.

It is important for parents to make a distinction between situational depression: which is a normal reaction to stress or loss, 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 receive support going through these periods from a trained professional.

“The idea that one must be, and look, endlessly cheerful is a destructive and daunting expectation for teens.” says Dr. Andrew Weil, who feels that kids need to learn that happiness is not some end point to be achieved. I teach teens how to discover a sense of peace and contentment through life’s ups and downs, see and accept life as is, and find ways to respond effectively to each situation.

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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 Emotionally Intense?

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Highly sensitive & creative teens are frequently misunderstood, mislabelled and misdiagnosed. – Sandra

Teens who are extremely sensitive experience day-to-day life even more vividly and deeply. With their unique ways of perceiving the world, “emotionally intense” responses to challenges at home, school, work or in relationships are common.

Unfortunately, this emotional intensity is often misunderstood, and these intelligent, caring, and expressive young people are frequently mislabeled and misdiagnosed. There is great value in highly sensitive adolescents learning to manage their vulnerabilities — and harness their strengths.

I help highly sensitive young people to expand their ‘window of tolerance,’ so they are less easily triggered into states of acute stress, rage, and panic. I can teach your teen to harness their strengths and manage their vulnerabilities–so that they can thrive.

Being in the world with a highly responsive nervous system is not a disorder. But it can be challenging for parents and teachers to understand this young person’s hesitancy before trying new things, and their reactiveness to feeling overwhelmed.

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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.

Santa Monica Teen Mentor & Life Coach

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist 

It is not uncommon for teens to experience emotional imbalance and upheavals during adolescence. I help teens discover alternative ways of responding their challenges. – Sandra

Some teens may begin to show symptoms of emotional challenges during adolescence. If not addressed these symptoms can follow them into adulthood, leaving them emotionally immature and unable to engage in healthy relationships. You may be hesitant to take your teen to a therapist to address these issues, afraid that they will be labeled problem kids or learning disabled. Seeking my assistance as a Teen Life Coach can offer you another opportunity to remedy these problems.

Coaching can be a fun and uplifting experience for your child. In contrast to therapy, where the therapist is seen as the expert, coaching is a collaborative effort between myself and your teen. The focus is on helping your teen create a vision of the life they would like, and supporting them in their journey towards that goal. My training as a Teen Therapist has paved the way for developing more creative and positive ways for working with you and your family. My goal is to create a safe, non-judgmental space for your teen to explore their obstacles, ask their questions and express their feelings.

Sometimes you may not have the time or energy to be as available to your teen  as you would like. It has been said that “It takes a whole village to raise a child.” It can be helpful to know that I am here, should you ever want or need assistance.

Adolescent counselor, family therapist and respectful parenting coach for over 10 years based in Santa Monica, California.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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.

Parenting Teens Support Manual

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Parents need to clearly define their expectations with regard to their teenager’s behavior and responsibilities, both at home and away from home. – Sandra

This FREE Teen Therapist Parenting Support Manual is designed to help you and your teen reflect on their behavior as well as your expectations for their behavior and open a discussion where mutual understanding and cooperation can take place.

This packet contains five main parts:

1. My Behaviors
To be used to identify the behaviors that are expected from your family members.

2. My Responsibilities
To be used to clarify your expectations for your teen with regard to household chores, checking in, homework, grooming, computer usage, etc.

3. Character Building
Can be used to discuss values you want to instill in your teen.

4. Life Skills 
Designed to guide you and your teen in a discussion about skills they will need to
cultivate in order to successfully participate in the world.

5. Contractual Agreement
Allows you to put in writing the behaviors and responsibilities you and your teen have agreed to, along with the agreed upon positive and negative consequences when those behaviors and responsibilities being upheld or not.

As a parent, you are expected to provide their children with a roof over their head, food to eat, clothes to wear, medical treatment, and protection from harm. However, cell phones, computers, spending money, stylish clothes, extracurricular activities and driving or being driven to their friend’s homes are all privileges that a child may earn through respectful and cooperative behavior toward their parents.

Implementing these concepts can take some time, which will vary substantially depending on the emotional maturity of your child. Don’t feel like you have to tackle them all at once. If there are other significant issues that are being addressed, you may want to study these concepts and implement them when you can.

In some situations, parents have not had the previous experience of entering into a similar discussion with their own parents. Therefore, I am more than happy to work together with you and your child to facilitate these discussions.

To receive your free copy

click here 

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Uncovering the reasons behind your adolescent’s withdrawn behavior can help put an end your teenager’s social isolation. – Sandra

Some teens struggle socially, for many reasons. For example:

1. Isolation can be caused by the way these teens look, dress, act, or a combination thereof.
2. Moodiness and erratic or volatile behavior can drive adolescents away from their peer group.
3. Shyness can be a cause of social isolation.
4. Some adolescents may be ostracized by peers due to their excelling academically or underachieving.
5. Adolescents who spend too much time on the internet or playing video games lose touch with their friends. They may replace genuine social interaction with online conversations with strangers.
6. A depressed adolescent often loses interest in everyday activities, dropping out of social groups at school.

Does your teen know how to:

1. Really listen?
2. Make new connections?
3. Let others get to know them?
4. Express what they feel and need?
5. Recognize hidden agendas in others?
6. Communicate respectfully within the family?
7. Set appropriate limits with regards to their bodies?
8. Be assertive (not aggressive) in their communication?

I work with teen clients one-on-one to identify areas where they can improve their social skills, and teach them tips and tricks to improve those skills. I can teach your child how to feel more empowered in social situations.

Working together with me in for a short time, they will learn:

* Conflict management
* How to be more assertive
* How to gain and keep more friends
* How to be confident in social situations

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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 Highly Anxious?

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Increased feelings of uneasiness about their body, performance, and peer acceptance are common in adolescence – Sandra

When your teen talks to me about their fears and anxieties, I listen carefully and respectfully, without discounting their feelings. Some adolescents are just naturally more timid than others. As their bodies, voices, and emotions change during adolescence, these sensitive young people may feel even more self-conscious.

In extreme cases, the adolescents can become very withdrawn, unable to overcome intense self-doubt and worry. I work with these teens to trace their anxiety to specific situations and experiences, and teach them techniques to help them reduce the overwhelming nature of their anxious feelings.

While anxiety disorders can cause considerable distress in a teen’s life, the overall prognosis is good. Extreme anxiety in teens may require a combination of treatment interventions that can include meditation, Neurofeedback, or a referral for medication. The most effective plan is one that is individualized to the teenager and their family.

Anxiety carries information. My goal is to help my teen clients learn self-soothing techniques to manage their anxiety, so they can move beyond it to reach their goals.

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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 To Resolve Conflicts

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A Note From the Santa Monica Teen & Family Counselor

There is a saying “Give a man to fish, you feed him for the day. Teach a man to fish, you feed him for life.” – Sandra

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. One way you can assist your teen is in inviting them to reflect on their day. You can give them the opportunity to expand their emotional vocabulary and practice emotional intelligence by asking them these 3 questions at bedtime:

  1. What happened today that made you happy?
  2. Did anything happen today that made you sad?
  3. Was there anything that caused you to feel frustrated?

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 your 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.

If you believe your teen is being overly reactive because of lagging skills and unresolved problems, then offering rewards and punishments may not be the best approach. Solving those problems and teaching those skills would make much better sense!

Adolescent counselor, family therapist and respectful parenting coach for over 10 years based in Santa Monica, California.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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 Therapist for Your Teen

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

I specialize in working with shy, sensitive and creative teenagers from diverse, multicultural families. -Sandra

I help parents get the whole picture of what’s going on in their teen’s mind, including the neurological changes that occur during adolescence. The reason I offer families with teens a FREE Initial Parent Consultation is to give you the opportunity to get a better sense of who I am–and how I work. In learning more about the symptoms your family is experiencing, I am able to make recommendations on how to address the challenges your teen is struggling with.

Not all family therapists have extensive experience working with the teen population. Along with my Marriage and Family Therapist license, I have advanced training in Child Specialization Studies and Adolescent Psychology, and over 10 years experience as practicing counselor for teenagers. I specialize in coaching and therapy for highly sensitive adolescents and their families. I currently write a Teen Advice Blog and have 2 books on Amazon.com called “What Would Your Teen Life Coach Say?” and “What Would Your Teen Therapist Say?”

Before starting family counseling, it is important for parents to reflect on what they hope to get out of the experience of therapy. It is also essential for you to examine your readiness to embrace the changes that may be necessary for your family to make. Family therapy is a collaborative relationship between you and I, with parents needing to reinforce the work I do at home.

If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.

Menu of Services Offered:

Call Now to Schedule a Free Consultation!

Click to Call:

(310) 951-5678
.

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.