This chapter describes family, friends and enemies, dating and love, tv and media, technology and cyberbullying. Children with close family relationships during middle childhood are more likely to have closeness in these relationships during adolescence than those with detached family relationships during middle childhood. Studies indicate that adolescents with high levels of parental monitoring are less likely to engage in problem behaviors than those with little or no parental monitoring. Many adolescents have little or no conflict, and those with elevated levels of conflict are often experiencing other difficulties in their lives such as substance abuse or depression. The way in which adolescents engage in victimization shifts from primarily physical aggression, which is more common during middle childhood, to social or relational bullying. An additional aspect of the reorganization of an adolescent’s social network discussed earlier involves a shakeup of the peer group to include more cross-sex interactions.
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The adolescent stage of life does not occur in isolation from other developmental stages. When an adolescent is experiencing difficulties with parents and friends leading to feelings of sadness, studies of average adolescents and their natural propensity toward difficulties during the adolescent years can help us assess whether this particular adolescent’s problems go beyond the norm. Understanding normative adolescent development can help clarify for professionals working with teens if the issue they encounter with a client is clinical or developmental. The majority of the time, when a teen is experiencing sadness it is an expression of a normal part of the adolescent experience. Understanding normal adolescent development can help in making the types of determinations thoughtfully, without jumping to conclusions and over diagnosing adolescents with major depression when all they are experiencing is a normal developmental process.
This chapter presents a case study of a woman who finds a counselor for her 11-year-old son. The son’s family possessed many qualities characteristic of “growth-fostering relationships” defined in relational-cultural theory (RCT). The woman portrayed the son as a healthy young boy with few developmental problems or health concerns. The priorities for his counseling goals included: to assess the risk that he might harm himself and put in place interventions for safety; to determine what significant life events contributed to his anxiety and depression; to increase his feelings of connection to others; to reduce the occurrence of his nightmares; to support him in developing a stronger voice in order to ask for help when he needed it and to express his needs. Adlerian play therapy and mutual storytelling proved to be a good fit for him, and helped the author understand his view of self and his world.
This chapter discusses the counseling process of an older adolescent, and his family as they negotiated their boundaries, communication styles, and relational connections. It reviews how they learned to differentiate between enabling behaviors and loving support. Within his familial, peer, institutional, and educational systems, the patient learned to evade difficult moments, escape into oblivion, and disarm people with a charming smile. The adolescent began drinking at age 12, started smoking marijuana regularly at age 14, and began smoking heroin at age 16. He suffered from both substance dependence and major depression. The patient was prepared for treatment, and the treatment concentrated on aftercare planning, living arrangements, social support, and outpatient counseling to focus on family issues, grief, addiction, and mental health recovery. The chapter concludes that addicts show demonstrably different brain structures and functioning than nonaddicts and genetic differences predict addiction and these preexisting neurological differences predispose people to addiction.
This book offers an in-depth look at the ways in which contemporary undergraduate students may differ from past generations, as well as noting how some things never change, such as needs related to finding social support, romantic intimacy, and academic achievement. It first provides a brief overview of the various developmental transformations that are taking place within the many levels of cognitive, affective, and physiological development of emerging adults. The book then considers the typical counseling concerns that counselors can expect to meet across the academic year. Next, it addresses the social concerns of students as they seek to find the best way to fit in on campus. It addresses the growing diversity of college campuses as well as provides counselors with guidance on helping their clients connect into the campus community. Then, the book moves into ways to assist clients who are facing unexpected hurdles, including grief over the loss of significant others; difficulties with self-esteem and self-image presented by the competitive culture of college-age females; and navigational challenges in romantic relationships that may be more intense and sexually tinged than prior high school relationships had been. Specific mental health disorders that frequently appear in the college-age population are also addressed in the book. The book provides guidelines for treatment and intervention that are relevant to college counselors working within a brief counseling framework. Topics include eating disorders, substance abuse, depression, anxiety, self-injury, suicidal students, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and impulse-control disorders. Finally, the book provides readers with ideas for promoting student well-being beyond the counseling office.
This chapter presents a case study to illustrate the challenges faced by veterans in adjusting to civilian life. Due to differences between the military and civilian life, many veterans struggle with understanding others in a work environment and adapting to changing demands. In fact, most veterans who need mental health treatment never seek it out. Disability is not uncommon among this population. In fact, there are numerous disabilities among this population including both physical disabilities and psychiatric disabilities; posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injuries are among some of the more common disabilities. There continues to be a stigma regarding seeking out mental health services. In addition to relationship issues, Cornish found that veterans struggled with anxiety, anger, depression, and thoughts of suicide. The numerous challenges faced by veterans in adjusting to civilian life are impacted by a loss of identity and the loss of support.