How do I communicate with my TEENAGER!?!!??

Why does my teen feel the need to argue with me?

Your teen DOES NOT feel the need to argue with you.  Your teen DOES feel the need to be heard, understood, and accepted.  When your teen feels they are not being heard they will argue, yell, and act out because they are frustrated and feeling alone.

How do I make my teen feel understood?

By listening to them!!  When an argument begins parents are so frustrated with being disrespected they close their ears to their teen; much like their teen does when they’re frustrated with not being understood.  By repeating what your teen wants in a clear, calm manner you show them you are taking in what they are saying to you.

How is telling them what they want to hear helping them?

Letting your teen know you hear them is not the same as letting them have their way.  Once you’ve calmly showed them you are listening to them, it is your turn to explain your opinion.  You can still tell your teen no and let them know you understand where they are coming from.

What’s the best way to talk to my teen?

Stay calm!!  You set the tone of the conversation with your child, if they try to escalate the conversation to an argument it is up to you to stay calm and keep the discussion from turning into a screaming match.

What are other important things to remember when talking to my teen?

Don’t judge.  Don’t tell your teen “You don’t understand”.  Do create a safe, open space for expression.  Do show your child how to keep calm by doing so yourself.  Always remember that you are a parent, not a friend; it’s ok for your teen to be angry with you for not giving them their way, just continue to show them you are listening to them and taking in everything they are saying.   If you would like to involve a counselor in your conversations to better help you communicate with your teenager, please call our office for an appointment.

We’re located in Metairie (504) 717-4043 or Mandeville (985) 624-2942 -Dr. Andre Sagrera Judice, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, DCEP

 

-Contributed by Michelle Haeur, M.Ed., NCC, Counselor Intern

Am I Bipolar?

Dr Andre, How do I know if I am Bipolar?

 

Do you experience days without sleep yet you don’t feel tired? Do you experience days, weeks, months of depression and irritability so severe that it affects your ability to relate to others? If so, you may need to be evaluated for Bipolar Disorder.

As more people become informed about mental illness, Bipolar Disorder (formerly called manic-depressive illness) seems to be gaining more visibility. Bipolar Disorder is characterized by a number of symptoms, primarily severe highs (mania) and lows (depression) in mood, energy, and a severe deficit in judgment.

It is important to understand that Bipolar Disorder is not like “regular” ups and downs everyone goes through due to various stressors in life. This disorder causes major problems in a person’s ability to function in relationships as well as on the job. They can exercise poor judgment in dangerous situations, and when the illness is exacerbated, can potentially become psychotic or suicidal. When depressed, people will often exhibit a severely depressed mood, in stark contrast to their manic phases.

If you or someone you know is exhibiting these symptoms, don’t hesitate to call a mental health professional right away for assessment. With the right help, this is usually a very manageable illness that responds well to treatment. For more information about this disorder, see the National Institutes of Mental Health website at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/bipolar-disorder/what-is-bipolar-disorder.shtml.

If you would like an assessment of your mental health please call our office for an appointment. We’re located in Metairie (504) 717-4043 or Mandeville (985) 624-2942

-Dr. Andre Sagrera Judice, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, DCEP

Social drinking question

Dr Andre,

When is it time to seek help with a social drinking question? I do not share the same opinion of my wine with dinner as other members of my family?

 

Since there is a conflict of opinion it would probably be helpful for both parties(all) to be fully heard. Often in a neutral setting each side can actually speak and be heard without interruptions. Sometimes this is the first time people actually truly listen to each other!  From there, a decision could be made by you for guidance, suppport, or general reassurance , or any other goals that may be discovered in session. If you would like more specific information regarding your family communication please call our office for an appointment. We’re located in Metairie (504) 717-4043 or Mandeville (985) 624-2942.

 

-Dr. Andre Sagrera Judice, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, DCEP

Job Interview anxiety

Dr Andre,

The more interviews I go on, the more anxious I become, and I feel less confident each time. Can you help me with this problem?

 

Stress/anxiety reducing skills, relaxation techniques, and confidence building skills are all teachable. For example, we could challenge the thoughts you are having about yourself, and your performance. We could assist you in seperating fact from fiction. as we often magnify our perceived imperfections. A more relaxed and confident approach could be developed, at a pace that is comfortabe for you, with your goals in mind.

 We could assist you in seperating fact from fiction.

If you would like more specific information regarding your job interview anxiety please call our office for an appointment. We’re located in Metairie (504) 717-4043 or Mandeville (985) 624-2942

-Dr. Andre Sagrera Judice, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, DCEP