Providing Christ-Centered Therapy for Teens and Families
Do You Want Christian Therapy for your Teenager?
For Christian parents choosing a therapist, you might wonder:
- How do I know the therapist shares my worldview?
- Does the therapist support my family’s values?
- Will the therapist encourage my teenager to rely on God and the Bible for guidance on their mental health journey?
Every therapist is ethically bound not to undermine a client’s belief system. However, for many families that is not enough. Some parents are looking for a therapist who can help encourage their teenager’s relationship with God, religious community, and Scripture. Many Christian teenagers tell us it feels like the world is currently against their belief in God and their morals. In essence, Christian teens say having a Christian therapist gives them the space to process thier struggles through a Christian lens and to talk about what it feels like to hold some counter-culture beliefs. These teens benefit from Christian Counseling.
Fears Christian Parents Might Have About Traditional Therapy
Therapy has many roots in secular viewpoints. It theorizes all kinds of explanations for internal human suffering, challenges in relationships, and mental illness. Consequently, the solutions offered by traditional therapy often only give a slight nod to faith-based solutions.
As a result, many parents worry about their teen having a private confidential conversation between their child and another adult. They wonder, “What if the adult doesn’t support our worldview?” Christian parents are also nervous about therapy because, “What if the therapist encourages my teenager in whatever recent trend they have seen online?”
Families of faith are concerned therapists will work from the current paradigm of relative truth. By contrast, the beauty of Christian based counseling is the therapist believes in God’s unchanging truth. A Christian therapist takes into account all psychological training and theories, but still vets them through the Christian worldview.
How Do Your Christian Therapists View My Child?
Another key point is that Teen Therapy OC therapists believe your child is “fearfully and wonderfully made.” We believe your child was “knitted together in [their] mother’s womb,” from Psalm 139. Seeing your teenager in this light means the therapist believes your teenager exists to serve God and others, not themselves. It means some of the therapy “homework” pushes for selfless actions, engagement with prayer and a church family, and consideration of God’s love. Much of the psychology world is occupied with loving oneself; conversely, Christ-centered counseling focuses on learning how God’s love sustains us. We believe engaging with a community of loving believers does wonders for your teen’s mental health.
What is an Example of How Christian Counseling for Teens Works?
One example of how Christian therapy augments treatment is for Christian adolescents with eating disorders. We discuss with your teenager whether the sole purpose of God creating your child is for your child to pursue a “perfect body.” Invariably the teenager says God put them here to worship Him and love others, not to be a certain size. We frame the eating disorder as something that interferes with your child experiencing God’s purpose for their life. The more we dive into this concept in conjunction with standard eating disorder treatment, the more they are able to anchor to a purpose beyond achieving the “perfect body.” And just as importantly, faith helps parents stay strong through the exhausting process of recovery.
Another example is how our Christian therapists work with anxiety. We implement many traditional psychological techniques that have proven to be effective such as cognitive behavioral therapy. However, cognitive behavioral therapy on its own only searches within your teenager for negative thinking patterns and experiences that lead to their current struggles. Our Christian therapists modify the therapy to include discussions about what your teen’s faith says about the root causes of mental health struggles. Prayer, bible reading, involvement with church, and discussions about God’s sovereignty are all incredibly helpful for anxiety. When these are combined with the tools cognitive behavioral therapy has to offer, Christian Counseling is powerful.
While two examples are given, Christian integrated therapy is useful in many situations. Feel free to contact us and find out how it works for your teenager’s situation.
Teen Therapy OC Therapists who Practice Christian Counseling
There are several therapists on staff at Teen Therapy OC who feel comfortable implementing faith into the therapy room.
To ask about Christian counseling for your teenager call 949-394-0607.
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