There comes a point in raising a teenager when you hit a wall in communication. Its natural and inevitable, but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating for parent and child. Our family was there! We spent most evenings trying to pull out of our child what he was thinking, feeling and what made him so anxious. He seemed lost in his own thoughts and anxiety and regardless of how much concern and love we expressed, he just couldn’t share those innermost challenges with us. We felt like we were failing him daily.
It was then that we decided to reach out to Marcy at Olive Orchard Lab for help. She was a parent of teens so she knew how we felt dealing with this moment in our child’s development of self, but most importantly she knew how to provide a safe space for him to work through this on his own terms and timing.
Marcy met with our son and quickly assessed his strengths and began building upon those. She knew his intellect was such an integral part of what made him special but how it also could become his biggest hurdle in life if he didn’t know how to use it. She provided a time bi-weekly that our son could speak freely and without opinions about the things he was struggling with and she would help him find the pathway to resolution.
Goal setting and planning the steps to achievement of those goals was key to reducing his anxieties about the future that was shutting him down. School was easy for him but life was getting harder with his pending senior year and the prospect of college and all that entails. Therefore, he needed to learn the steps involved in setting and achieving the goals he felt were important for himself. Marcy provided the framework and asked him the tough questions and he did the rest.
It wasn’t long before we started to see him doing more things with purpose, keeping a personal schedule, and interacting with us with more ease. Marcy helped him see how much our love manifested through our desire to communicate more with him. She helped him find his voice and how he could use that to teach us how to better communicate with him.
Now in his Senior year, he is a different person. Setting goals and achieving them was the key to him overcoming his anxiety because he learned how to do it step by step and that he could do it without fear of failure.
Our son is now ready for the independence that is required for college and we have learned how to better parent a developing young adult.