Adolescents tend to tackle their personal challenges in solitude. From the parent’s perspective, it can appear that they’ve been cast out from helping their teen navigate through life, but this behavior shouldn’t be written off as malicious or non-compliant. Part of adolescence is exercising newfound independence, and that often means taking to the advice of peers over their parents.
The natural reaction can be to push back or pry, but this can counterintuitively sow distrust between parent and teen. Instead, allowing teens to converse among themselves allows for natural, honest interaction and, ultimately, better therapy. Treatment programs for teens at Imagine Spokane are included with our intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization programs. To find out if your teen could benefit from participating in a group therapy program, contact us online or call 509.870.3810.
What Makes Teen Group Therapy Effective?
Group therapy for teens isn’t new—it’s been one of the most effective therapy strategies for as long as it’s been practiced. The reason for its historical success is, in part, due to how teenagers are quick to socialize with their peers. This is especially the case with today’s teenagers, who can quickly open up to new people under the right conditions. Vocalizing insecurities, struggles, and fears is a critical part of therapy, regardless of whether it’s with others or one-on-one with a therapist.
These conditions are important, too. At Imagine Spokane, we get the importance of creating an environment where teens who, up until therapy, have never met can converse naturally. Allowing teens to share commonalities can make working through issues significantly easier. Learning through the experience of others enriches therapy, as well as a whole host of additional benefits, including:
- Improves communication skills
- Forms bonds with peers
- Creates a support network through trying times
- Shares experience, lessons, and values
- Teaches strategies and coping mechanisms
In addition to the actual challenges teens face at any given moment, the sense that they’re doing it alone can be a problem all on its own. By introducing a group of peers into the therapy process, the sense that they’re struggling in isolation is easier to overcome.
What to Expect During Group Therapy Program for Teens
The size of a group therapy session is flexible and ultimately prioritizes the needs of each group member. Teens will discuss among themselves and the therapist, discovering commonalities and differences alike. In doing so, the group will not only form connections but use their peers as a springboard for growth and introspection. Group therapy is loosely guided, and this free-form structure has proven to be a strength. With that said, each session can expect to cover these topics and more:
- Identify group problems
- Share individual stories, experiences
- Find common ground
- Participate in team-building and trust-focused activities
- Use the strengths of peer wisdom to drive the conversation
- Create accountability for achieving goals, both long and short-term
These sessions run for about an hour, and around a dozen sessions are standard duration as part of intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization programs.
Explore Group Therapy Services at Imagine Spokane
Teen group therapy can provide the skills and connections adolescents need for a stable, healthy life. At Imagine Spokane, we provide mental health treatment for those 12-17 years of age. Every patient has their individual needs tended to and are invited to be part of a group of their peers. Our therapists have the skill and experience to provide life-changing therapy to your teen. If they’ve become withdrawn, secretive, or irritable, don’t worry—the team at Imagine Spokane is on standby to lend a hand. Contact us online, or call 509.870.3810 today to learn more about the teen group therapy program today.