High School Means New Opportunities

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Is your teen daughter  starting at a new school this fall? Read on for tips on how to help her cope. – Sandra

“I am starting high school next month and I’m a little nervous! Can you give me any tips?”

Going to a new school can mean new beginnings. If there was anything challenging for you about your previous school, you have a chance to make some changes.

Have you ever noticed when some people come back from their summer vacation, they may look or act differently? Everyone grows through their experiences. How have you grown in the last school year? What would you like to do differently this school year?

Do you want to be a better student? Do you want to try a new sport? Would you like to meet some new people? This is an opportunity to set some new goals you would like to accomplish.

Sometimes, your friends go along with you to your new school. Sometimes, you need to make new friends. Think about what you liked about the friends you had last year and look for similar qualities in the people at your new school. But if you experienced a lot of drama with your friends last year, you may want to thing about choosing new friends.

If you find that after the first couple of weeks you are still feeling uncomfortable, ask for support! Express your feelings to your parents. Speak to a teacher you feel you can trust. Talk to a friend. You don’t have to go through this alone. Changes are not always easy. Sharing with someone about what you are going through begins the process of finding solutions to help you feel better.

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.

Helping Your Teen Daughter Feel Beautiful

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

It is important for teens to understand that a person’s physical appearance is only a small part of who they are. Read on to learn how I might approach this subject with your daughter. – Sandra

Do you know anyone who looks beautiful from the outside, but are really not nice people? Have you noticed others who are not beauty queens, but you love being with them? 
It’s not uncommon for young women to compare themselves to the airbrushed images of today’s fashion models. The media is full of photos of girls who appear to look flawless. Without make-up, perfect lighting and good camera angles, the girls teens see on television and on billboards do not really look the same as they do in the advertisement. They have pimples and have bad hair days like everyone else.
Everyone is born with a unique look. The size and shape of one’s facial features as well as one’s body shape is usually a combination of genetics. Thus everyone needs to learn how to work with what they’ve got. Have you noticed that people who eat fresh fruit and vegetables, and drink plenty of water have good skin? People who exercise regularly have a nice muscle tone and fit well in their clothes.

Before you decide to change, you need to ask yourself a couple of questions. Who are you changing for? Who are you comparing yourself to? What do you like about yourself? What can you realistically change?

If you decide to make some changes, make sure they come from a place of loving yourself … for your physical appearance is just a small part of who you really are. (And hopefully, the people you choose to surround yourself with are wise enough to know this)

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.

Help Your Teen Define The Word “Friendship”

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Some people prefer to have just a few very close friends, while others like to experience a variety. – Sandra

“I like to sit with different people on a day to day basis. Some friends think that I am not sitting with them because I do not like them. What should I do?”

It sounds like you get along with, and are well liked by many people. That is a very positive thing. It can be challenging, however, when friends have different definitions of what they think friendship means.

To some people, being a friend means that you spend all your time with them. Others may be accepting of the fact that you may have more than one friend, or group of friends. I think it could be helpful to talk to the people who are complaining, and find about their definition of friendship.

If your friends are merely feeling a little insecure, re-assuring them that they are still very important to you may help them to let go of the fear that you no longer like them. If they are the possessive type, and don’t want to share you with anyone else, you may want to let them know that your definition of friendship is a bit different than theirs.

After talking with them, if they are still being critical of your choices, you will need to look at whether you think it is worth your giving up all of your other friends to be with them. This is entirely up to you.

The bottom line is that as hard as you may try, you won’t please everyone all of the time. You can, however, do your best to be honest and clear about who you are and your definition of “friendship.” In this way, the people who choose to be your friend will know what to expect, and can simply enjoy their time with you.

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.

Help Teens Create A Fulfilling Life

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

The following are some common themes that are often a cause of suffering in adolescents. Do you recognize any of these in your teen? – Sandra

•    the struggle to be perfect
•    wanting to please everyone and losing oneself in the process
•    feeling isolated and invisible to parents and peers
•    feeling angry, but not having the skills to express oneself productively
•    feeling socially awkward
•    comparing oneself to air-brushed images of celebrities and feeling inadequate

Being a child means being dependent upon parents and needing to follow their rules. This can also be true for being a student, as well as a member of society. Yet, teens must also learn how to balance their own needs. This requires that they become aware of their “needs,” which are different from their “wants.”

What does your teen like to do in their spare time? Are they comfortable being alone? Do they need music on while they study, or do they prefer silence? Do they enjoy hanging out with many friends, or just a few close ones? Does exercise relieve their stress? Do they need a full night’s sleep to avoid feeling irritable?

High school can be an intense time, filled with competition and the pressure to perform. For many teens, this translates into thinking that they are their grades, their looks, or who they hang out with. Yet teens are not just measures of external measures of success. They are individuals with feelings and dreams.

An essential part of parenting is to provide opportunities for you teen to experience new things and become self-sufficient. It is also not uncommon for parents to have expectations that they would like their child to fulfill. However, if your teen feels called to be a journalist and you want them to be a doctor, it is important to have a heartfelt discussion where they can feel seen and heard.

It takes an act of courage to be yourself without apology. It takes self-love to look in the mirror and see the precious person that you are. It takes self-awareness to speak your truth. These qualities are earned through encouraging your teen to reflect on who they are and where they want to go with their life.

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.

Parenting Techniques To Address Bullying

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

It is helpful for teachers and parents to understand what causes a teen to become a bully. The reality is that these kids are often struggling to find appropriate ways to get their needs met.- Sandra

When a child has been frequently put down, and/or ignored at home, they may attempt to gain self-esteem putting others down. They may also mimic the behavior of the adults who have behaved aggressively towards them.

The key message for parents is that it is important to understand what emotional support your teen needs from you. When these needs aren’t met, teens may resort to negative ways of seeking attention or gaining power.

If your teen has been accused of bullying, help them explore what they were gaining from intimidating, mocking, or ganging up against another. Then consider how your parent-child relationship could be improved to better meet those needs.

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.

How Is Your Family Handling Change?

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Whether you are a parent or a teenager, change is seldom easy. It can challenge the relationships between a parent and teen when either or both of them are under stress. – Sandra

With the changes in today’s economic climate, parents and teens are being challenged to negotiate for what they want and need in ways that they perhaps haven’t had to before. How can parents and teens use this opportunity to cooperate and better understand each other?

Teens are not the only one experiencing changes in their bodies. Parents are getting older, and may be going through hormonal changes as well. How can parents and teens have empathy for the changes they each may be going through?

Unfortunately, not everyone chooses to stay married. Sometimes best friends move away. Boyfriends and girlfriends can break up. During these times, it is helpful that teens and parents make space for each other to mourn their loss, and perhaps even find ways to find compassion and support for each other in their process of letting go.

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.

Teach Your Daughter To Expect Respect

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Do your daughter’s male friends treat her like one of the guys? Read on to learn how to teach your daughter how to handle this situation. – Sandra

“My guy friends at school treat me like one of the guys. They’re always making fun of me and stealing my hair bow. What should I do to get them to treat me with respect?”

I know that it can be aggravating when guy friends tease you, but did you know that teasing is a very common form of play among guys? If you observe groups of guys who are friends, whether they be young or old, you will often hear them teasing each other. The fact that they are teasing you probably means that they like you.

At a certain age, being treated with respect becomes very important to a girl. Adolescence is a time when girls and guys start practicing more grown up behavior. During this time, however, girls tend to mature a faster than their male friends. Thus, they may still treat you like one of the guys, instead of the way you would prefer.

If the teasing is getting to be too much for you, you may want to consider setting boundaries. This means that you politely excuse yourself from situations where you don’t feel comfortable. Essentially, you are giving them a clear message that their behavior is not okay with you.

Only you can decide what types of behavior you are willing to tolerate. The good new is that as guys get older, you will discover that your male friends will put more effort into trying to please you. The key is to communicate your feelings in a polite and open manner.

Girls and guys often see the world differently. It is important to remember that during adolescence, you are learning about each other through your interactions. Patience, kindness, and forgiveness go a long way towards building a bridge between you. At the same time, you have a right to decide how you want to be treated, and its up to you to choose your friends wisely.

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.

Pre-Teens And Summer Camp

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Read on for ideas on how you can support your pre-teen when going away to summer camp for the first time. – Sandra

Traveling away from home for the first time and leaving behind everything that is familiar to them can be scary for pre-teens. They don’t know what to expect and aren’t sure how people are going to respond to them. What they need to focus on is that it can also be a very exciting time! Adventure awaits them … along with the possibility of new friendships.

Summer camp is an opportunity for your pre-teen to practice their social skills and grow as a person. By stepping outside of their normal routine, they get a chance to learn from others, and return to school in the fall with new experiences under their belt.

One of the ways young people can deal with being homesick is to take something with them that feels comforting. One girl I know took a pillowcase with a photo of her family on it. Another took a pre-addressed notecards to send home letters telling her friends about her trip. At the very least, your pre-teen can take a couple photos to look at whenever s/he wants, and perhaps share with the people they meet.

The first day of camp is like the first day back at school after summer break. People who already know each other gather together and visit. Your pre-teen should to see who looks interesting to them, and introduce themselves. There are probably other new people like them who are very open to getting to know them.

They also want to try and participate in all the activities, and avoid making any snap judgments about people. By giving themselves permission to really enjoy themselves, and even be silly, they are more likely to have fun.

Remind your teen that summer camp is meant to be a break from school, so they don’t need worry about doing everything right.  A big key is having a good attitude. Kindness, gratitude and a sense of humor go a long way towards making new friends. Ultimately, they should seek out people who make them laugh, and spend time with them.  
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.

Teens: Discover Your True Self-Expression

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A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist

Does your teen pretend to be someone that they are not? Here are some ways to address this with your teen. – Sandra

Where you are born, and where you go to school does not necessarily determine who you are meant to be. You come into this world with unique gifts and talents. You have your own physical expression, as well as your own personality and style. Add to that your life experiences, and areas of interest, and you have an individual like no other.

By trying on many types of different behavior, you are discovering your authentic expression. Are you the athletic type? Are you the scholar? Are you an entertainer, or an artist? Are you the peace-maker? These are questions only you can answer for yourself.

High school is a time when you will feel pulled to fit in with the crowd. Yet, by doing this, are you being true to yourself?  You may want to start thinking where you would like to go with your life

For some, this may mean raising a family in a home filled with love. For others, this may mean becoming an educator and contributing to changing the world. Anything is possible, but first, you must get to know yourself, and then find the courage to be yourself in all your magnificence.

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 Girl Support Groups

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Weekly Teen Support Groups

3girls

in Santa Monica.

A Note From the Santa Monica Family Counselor

A teen support group offers an opportunity for teenagers to gain greater insight into themselves and others, as the members talk about issues that are common to teenagers, but are not always discussed openly. – Sandra

The purpose of this support group is to create a safe space for your adolescent to express themselves, explore their feelings, improve their self-esteem, and learn more effective ways to communicate and solve problems. Recognizing the good in themselves and others, while embracing their differences, is an another important part of what they will experience within this group.

  • Free initial parent consultation
  • Groups will meet Saturdays over summer break at 10:30 a.m.
  • 1421 Santa Monica, Suite 108, Santa Monica
  • The fee is $100/month per person

**Note: If your teen is struggling, 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. – Sandra

Reserve Your Space. FREE Parent Consultation.

For more information, please visit my website:

SandraDupont.com

.verified by Psychology Today.

Adolescent Therapist|Parent Coach|Teen Mentor

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