Mental Health: Teens

Teens face different mental health challenges than adults. Whether it’s a troubled teen or depression, find local health providers who can help your child navigate this time in their life.

Local Psychologist

Kirtley Thornton

Kirtley Thornton

PhD
Psychologist
Charlotte, NC
Dr. Raja Abdel-Majid

Dr. Raja Abdel-Majid

Ph.D
Psychologist
Mississauga, ON
Ms. Lynda Mainwaring

Ms. Lynda Mainwaring

Associate Professor at the University of Toronto
Psychologist
Toronto, ON

Lisa Bunnage, Parenting Coach, discusses Parenting and Helping With Deeply Troubled Teens.

Lisa Bunnage, Parenting Coach, discusses common parenting mistakes.

Tips on How To Parent Teenagers and Dating

Teens can start dating at about 13 or 14 years old, depending on their maturity level.

But there are a few rules attached to that. When you have young teenagers dating some really good places for them to go would be skating rinks, libraries – they may not like that – pitch and putt, and bowling alleys.

Movie theaters are a little bit darker so not quite as good as somewhere that’s really lit up and has a lot of activity going on. Also, somewhere where there are families too, so it’s not just a whole bunch of teenagers hanging out.

Don’t say a thing to them because the more resistance you put up with your teenager’s choices the more attractive that person is going to be. You can only really address their behavior, but never attack that other person’s personality or anything else about them. Just say, ‘They seem very nice. I hope they’re treating you well.’

When they’re about 16 or 17 years old that’s when you have to start cutting the apron strings a little bit and letting them go. Unfortunately, you can’t be there for everything. You just have to hope that you’ve told them all the right things and that they’re going to make wise choices.

Go and see a parenting coach, a school counselor, or a family counselor. Seek help if you’re really worried about them, but you are going to have to start letting go.

Presenter: Ms. Lisa Bunnage, Counselor, Coquitlam, BC

Local Practitioners: Counselor

Parenting and Helping With Deeply Troubled Teens

A really troubled teen will be a teen that is in a lot of pain and not usually getting along with their parents or anybody else.

And the one thing that parents can do that is just a miracle, it turns everything around so you can start to work with them, is to say, ‘I’m sorry. I haven’t done a very good job parenting. What can I do to be a better parent?’

When your teens in real trouble and you say I’m sorry, I haven’t done a very good job,’ you take all the responsibility off them and all the accountability off them, because teens in trouble are very defensive and they have walls up. Instantly that wall starts to come down if you take responsibility for everything they’re doing wrong. You become fully accountable; it doesn’t mean you are, but you become fully accountable.

And you’d do that for your children because you love them that much that you are going to say to them, ‘It’s all my fault. What can I do?’ And all of a sudden – it might not be overnight, it might take a couple of weeks, but they will start to open up.

There’s no such thing as a bad parent. There is such a thing as a parent who really doesn’t know what to do. Every single parent loves their children and would die for them and do anything that they had to. But what you have to do is you have to tell a deeply troubled teen ‘I’m going to do whatever I have to do to help you and to help me too.’ So you tell them what you’re going to do.

You go to the school counselor, you go to your doctor, you look for a parenting couch, you go to the grandparents, you go to anybody and everyone and you ask for help.
Presenter: Ms. Lisa Bunnage, Counselor, Coquitlam, BC

Local Practitioners: Counselor

Lisa Bunnage, Parenting Coach, discusses children and smart phone safety.

Lisa Bunnage, Parenting Coach, discusses dealing with fussy child eaters.

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