Tags: ami denver

Can My Teen Be Helped?

AMI provides adolescent psychotherapy to teens between the ages of 12 and 19. Dr. Wilson has a strong, long-time background in treating adolescent depression and anger, bipolar disorder, anxiety, OCD, and impulse disorders, borderline personality disorder, substance and alcohol abuse, and the effects of divorce, death, and/or emotional, sexual, and physical abuse.

Dr. Parker Wilson has been an adolescent psychotherapist for many years. Dr. Wilson approaches the psychotherapy process with teens by using only the most effective and scientifically verified methodologies and techniques. For teens suffering from anxiety, OCD, and impulse disorders, Dr. Wilson utilizes exposure therapy and cognitive therapy. For teens suffering from depression and bipolar disorder, Dr. Wilson utilizes mindfulness based cognitive therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy. For adolescents suffering from borderline personality disorder, Dr. Wilson utilizes dialectical behavior therapy and mindfulness based cognitive therapy.

Conducting adolescent psychotherapy requires specific training and experience.

The issues that modern adolescents contend with on a daily basis are multi-layered and complex, and thus they require a sophisticated and effective psychotherapy process. The dynamics of school, home, and peer groups are far different in the 21st century than they were even twenty years ago. Modern teens live in a world that is hyper-connected, fast-moving, extremely demanding, and vivid. The messages and images they receive about themselves (and what they should and should not be) are near constant and in living color. Even when their family lives are solid, modern adolescents deal with intense pressures about sex, alcohol, substance abuse, money, and achievement. These pressures are so powerful and subtle that most teens (and their parents) have tremendous trouble truly understanding their effects.

As an adolescent psychotherapist, Dr. Wilson understands that the teenage mind is keyed to define itself. This process goes on in all teenagers. They confront their parents and other authority figures in an attempt to discover, by contrast, who they are and what they believe. They challenge rules, boundaries, and existing social structures, and to some extent that is exactly what they are supposed to do. The adolescent situation becomes far more difficult, however, when you add to these already disorienting, natural dynamics any of the following: a divorce, the death of a parent or significant other, sexual or physical trauma, the use of drugs and alcohol, an abusive relationship with a peer or parent, a mood or anxiety disorder, or a personality disorder. Often adolescents are confronted with more than one of these conditions simultaneously, which only compounds the difficulty further.

Dr. Wilson is adept at building rapport and trust with his adolescent clients.

AMI's adolescent psychotherapy helps teenagers learn to slow down and cultivate psychological awareness and relaxation. Once teenagers begin to trust the therapeutic relationship and feel safe in the clinical space, they begin to become more aware of their own minds. This is where the psychotherapy process becomes truly dynamic. Teenagers now begin to see the differences between thinking and feeling; they begin to discriminate between different types of thought and emotion, and they begin to see more deeply the relationship between thinking and feeling, and the creation of words and actions. In short, once teens have learned to fundamentally relax and become more aware, they can begin to work with their own minds. This allows them to then more skillfully create relationships at home and in school. This also provides them a greater sense of clarity, insight, and psychological control. With these skills in place, they will make much healthier choices, and they will create richer and happier adult lives. Because this is true, AMI strongly views an adolescent "in crisis" as a tremendous opportunity for growth, enrichment, and development.

At the end of the day, what greater gift could you truly ever offer your child than the ability to work with their own mind?

Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (part 2)

The second phase of AMI's mindfulness based cognitive psychotherapy is the development of mental clarity and healthy behavior. Aristotle once said, "Men acquire a particular quality by constantly acting in a particular way… you become just by performing just actions, temperate by performing temperate actions, brave by performing brave actions."

This second stage is a deliberate and liberating process of examining the client's major behavioral patterns and then asking, "Will this behavior pattern produce happiness, neutrality, or sorrow in my life?" Since all human behavior begins as thought and/or emotion, if a behavior is unhealthy it undoubtedly has unhealthy thoughts and emotions underneath it. For all the behavioral patterns that produce sorrow, the thoughts and emotions underlying those behaviors is sought out and analyzed. AMI's psychology in Denver uses mindfulness meditation and a deep consideration of personal ethics to help the client cultivate healthier thoughts and emotions. At this point, mindfulness and psychotherapy again come together in that the client's new and healthier thoughts and emotions will now yield healthier behaviors. The effect of these healthier behaviors now begins to create a distinct mind state characterized by an increased sense of stability, calm, balance, peace, and happiness.

The final phase of AMI's mindfulness based cognitive psychotherapy is the cultivation of penetrative insight. As Caitriona Reed said, “It is by the patience you call forth by returning your awareness to this very moment that you enliven your life, not by your aspiration to gain or attain. By coming home to this still center of awareness the way is made clear.” Based on the foundation of mindful awareness and upon the psychological effects of increased positive behavior and decreased negative behavior, the client has now eliminated much of the confusion, emotional overwhelm, insecurity, and disorientation that had plagued him or her. Because these afflicted mental states have been lessened, the client has automatically increased their mental awareness, clarity, and insight. With these increases in awareness, clarity, and insight the client is now capable of making profound changes in his or her life. The client is now capable of working with their own mind.

Moreover, using AMI's techniques for cultivating equanimity, compassion, and kindness, the phase three client is now capable of nothing less than emotional alchemy; in essence, the client can now frequently and increasingly transform wrath into patience, depression into satisfaction, greed into generosity, grief into meaning, and pride into humility. These transformations simply add to the client's already increased sense of awareness, clarity, and insight. This is what creates such positive results from psychotherapy Denver, and this does not necessarily require long term psychotherapy. As the client continues to foster and reinforce these new and healthier mental patterns (which only lead to increasingly positive words and behaviors) their sense of mental stability, balance, peace, and happiness continues to grow ever stronger. The experience of psychotherapy Denver now grows even deeper. Often, at this point, couples or a family therapy process can be added to deepen the effect.