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VIDEO: Helping Kids Find the Answers Inside

Here's a Fun Exercise That Gets Your Young Clients Involved

Charlotte Reznick

Wouldn’t it be great if we had a magic therapy wand to wave in front of our young clients and give them all the answers they need? What if this magic wand could conjure rainbow lizards and talking dogs to sit on our clients’ shoulders, bypass their defense systems, and whisper good, therapeutic advice in their ears? That’s exactly the kind of approach Charlotte Reznick uses with her young clients.

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Overcoming Standoffs with Tough Teens

...And the Three Questions You Should Ask Them in the Very First Session

Matthew Selekman

By Matthew Selekman - Trying to get in the door with provocative, therapy-savvy adolescents can be a challenging task for even the most seasoned of therapists. I've developed several engagement strategies that I regularly use, singly or in combination, that have consistently helped me to establish a therapeutic alliance with even the toughest teen client.

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I’m Funny and I Faint

A Story of Vulnerability and Possibility

Lynn Lyons

By Lynn Lyons - Believe me, I like boundaries. My office is attached to the back of my house, and the rules surrounding that are made clear to my clients. But how can I teach my young worriers (and the older ones, too) to relish the uncertainty of human connection if I’m unwilling to connect genuinely with them?

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Getting "Ghosted" by Clients

Four Stories from Therapists, and What They Learned from Their Experience

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - We've all seen it happen. Maybe some of us are even guilty of it ourselves: Sometimes it's easier to simply ignore people than respond when they reach out. But this disappearing act, or "ghosting" as it's become commonly known, also happens to therapists quite often. Here, four clinicians share their stories.

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What Works with Teen Clients

Forget Everything You Know About the Therapeutic Alliance

Janet Sasson Edgette

By Janet Edgette - It’s probably fair to say that most teens loathe the very idea of therapy. Yet, with confused and troubled adolescents needing our help more than ever, the gap between our grad school training and what works in real-life practice continues to widen.

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VIDEO: When Our Clients Help Us Overcome Our Greatest Fears

A Therapist Shares Her Most Memorable Clinical Experience

Lynn Lyons

Not all professional growth experiences come from classes, workshops, and consultation groups. Sometimes our clients can expand our comfort zones and teach us more about ourselves than we ever thought possible. Here, Lynn Lyons shares a moving, often hilarious, story about how her young client helped her become a stronger person and a better therapist.

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Digital Division

Now, More Than Ever, Our Society Needs What Talk Therapy Has to Offer

Sherry Turkle

By Sherry Turkle - Digital connection is a way to keep my job simple and my life tidier. But we have to support each other in remembering that the kind of conversations that may seem old-fashioned are actually most necessary and essential. Right now, digital culture closes down the questions that talk therapy knows how to open up.

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The Art of Not Knowing the Answer

A Trauma Specialist Shares Her Most Therapeutic Moment

Mary Jo Barrett

By Mary Jo Barrett - My very first case was the Byford family. The father was serving a six-month sentence for domestic abuse. During a home visit several months into treatment, the daughter, Laura, announced, “Dad is getting out of jail today! And he’s coming here!” My mind went blank. Her mother looked at me. Suddenly, it was as though I passed whatever strength I had to her, and she then passed it back to me.

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December Quandary: I Accepted a Gift from My Client!

Five Clinicians Give Their Take on What to Do Now

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - Asha recently gave her therapist a homemade necklace, which he accepted, thinking it innocuous enough. Now, she brings it up almost every session, asking why he's not wearing it and if he still likes it. Asha has a history of attachment issues, and her therapist worries his response might offend her or cause her to quit therapy. Here's how five therapists say they'd respond.

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A New Year's Conundrum

A Stumped Therapist's Attempt to Help Two Parents Set Boundaries Has a Surprising Result

Ron Taffel

By Ron Taffel - At 15, Jenny regularly breaks her curfew, flirts with drugs, and is getting close to being suspended from her Manhattan public school. Today, she and her parents are in my office discussing the latest issue: New Year’s Eve is coming up, and Jenny and her posse have plans.

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