What is the biggest problem facing teens today? Gang violence? Drugs? Teen pregnancy? Academic failure? The teen prison pipeline? All of those issues are critical and difficult to solve. But the answer to the biggest problem is far simpler than you probably expect.
Self esteem is linked to every one of the above issues. Trauma, lack of self image and overall negative feelings about themselves can lead to acting out and joining in on activities that attempt to fill the void. Self medication through drug abuse, sexual relationships, joining with a dangerous crowd…all of these can be attempts by a teenager to find some sense of belonging or peace.
Even the most terrifying teen problem, suicide, can be caused by low self esteem. Considering suicide is now the second leading cause of death among people under age 21, that is a worrying thought.
Developing Self Esteem Through Peer Interaction
Just having one on one interactions with teens who are facing the same issues can be very healing for your troubled child. Of course, this has to be done within a structured framework, in a safe and secure environment.
By taking part is set activities with other teens, your own will begin to develop confidence which can help them overcome some of what is holding them back.
Developing Self Esteem Through Therapy
Unfortunately, it isn’t as easy as joining a sport or art class. More is needed to help your teen find their voice and improve their self image. Therapy can be a great way to uncover and explore emotions in a safe space, with a trained professional who can help them contextualize those feelings.
Both individual and group therapy can be incredibly helpful for this task.
Schools For Troubled Teens
Believe it or not, both of these treatment options are available through a therapeutic boarding school. These are institutions that aim to assist troubled teens in finding the core of their behavior, learning life skills as well as coping mechanisms to deal with the intense emotions leading to their acting out.
At the same time, these schools are accredited and offer one on one tutoring, small classes with plenty of individualized attention and custom made plans to help your child improve their academic performance. They are fantastic if your teen has been struggling in school and has work to catch up on.
Find out more at Sundance Canyon Academy.