Adolescents and their Families

Happy family1 In this project we see adolescence as a life cycle transition that affects the family as a whole. We help parents and adolescents work collaboratively and simultaneously on maintaining a supportive relationship through all the changes that this transition demands. For parents this means understanding the needs of their adolescent child, adjusting beliefs and expectations for their adolescent, and finding new ways to manage their anxiety and anger, around their adolescent’s provocative and often dangerous behavior. For adolescents this means taking more responsibility both in their relationship with their parents, and for the trajectory of their own lives. Our emphasis is on improving interactive patterns and opening channels of communication. In this way we marshal the resources of the family so that parents and children can work together to resolve their problems.

Among the issues that we address are:

High conflict arguments among family members
Truancy and school failure
Substance abuse
The aftermath of separation and divorce
Eating disorders
Self-injurious behavior
Anger management issues
Depression
Suicidality
Criminality

In addition to clinical work, members of the project offer frequent trainings in the community on using systemic, family based treatment in work with at risk youth.

Director: Peggy Papp, LCSW
Assistant Director: Michael Davidovits, PhD
Project Associate: Courtney Zazzali, LCSW