The teenage years can be a very stressful and anxious time. Having someone who is an adult, separate from their parents, who is objective and understanding yet has their best interest at heart can be crucial for teens. My 2 years working at Fairfax high school has given me a great background in counseling teenagers. I have an ease with connecting with teenagers and a way of making them feel comfortable and heard so that they enjoy coming to therapy.

Some common issues teenagers face are family dynamics, academic stress, friendship issues, self esteem issues, body image issues, eating disorders, anxiety, depression and bullying. If you or your teenager is having stress in every day life please contact me to set up an appointment.

BULLYING

According to stopbullying.gov there are some universal signs to be aware of that can indicate your child is either being bullied or being a bully.

Signs of Being Bullied:

  • Comes home with damaged or missing clothing or other belongings
  • Reports losing items such as books, electronics, clothing, or jewelry
  • Has unexplained injuries
  • Complains frequently of headaches, stomachaches, or feeling sick
  • Has trouble sleeping or has frequent bad dreams
  • Has changes in eating habits
  • Hurts themselves
  • Are very hungry after school from not eating their lunch
  • Runs away from home
  • Loses interest in visiting or talking with friends
  • Is afraid of going to school or other activities with peers
  • Loses interest in school work or begins to do poorly in school
  • Appears sad, moody, angry, anxious or depressed when they come home
  • Talks about suicide
  • Feels helpless
  • Often feels like they are not good enough
  • Blames themselves for their problems
  • Suddenly has fewer friends
  • Avoids certain places
  • Acts differently than usual

 

Signs of Bullying Others:

  • Becomes violent with others
  • Gets into physical or verbal  fights with others
  • Gets sent to the principal’s office or detention a lot
  • Has extra money or new belongings that cannot be explained
  • Is quick to blame others
  • Will not accept responsibility for their actions
  • Has friends who bully others
  • Needs to win or be best at everything

Bullying has been a problem for as long as we can remember.  People would often say that the behavior was just kids being kids.  Studies have now found that bullying can have a tremendous negative effect on a person throughout their life.  Bullying cuts to the core of a person and can make a child question their self worth while decreasing their self esteem and self confidence.

Nowadays, school survival often means dealing with middle school problems/bullying and high school bullying.
It is important to understand what bullying is and the different types of bullying that are occurring.  According to the LAUSD website (2010):

Bullying is a comprehensive term that describes the deliberate antagonistic action or creation of a situation with the intent of inflicting emotional, physical, or psychological distress.  The behavior may be a single or repeated act and may be electronic, indirect, non-verbal, psychological, sexual, social, physical, or verbal. Bullying seeks to secure or maintain an imbalance of power between the perpetrator(s) and the target(s) and has a reasonable likelihood of emotional, physical, or psychological harm. The harmful effects of bullying may be exacerbated by the interaction of frequency, pervasiveness, and severity of the behavior(s), in addition to the power differential between the perpetrator(s) and target(s) (p.2).erer differential between the perpetrator(s) and target(

The LAUSD website (2010) lists nine categories of bullying:

  • Cyber-Bullying, Electronic Bullying or Sexting
  • Disability Bullying
  • Emotional, Psychological, Relational or Social Bullying
  • Indirect Bullying
  • Nonverbal Bullying
  • Physical Bullying
  • Racial/Ethnic/Religious Bullying
  • Sexualized Bullying
  • Verbal Bullying