Being a young male in today’s society comes with unique challenges and pressures. Research indicates that boys aged five-twelve are twice as likely to be regarded as hyperactive or aggressive compared with same-age female peers. Boys and young men, therefore, are more frequently labeled “problem kids.” Such messages can become internalized and compromise boys’ self-worth as they work to find their voice in an increasingly complicated world.
Boys, and to a greater extent, young men, have two personas, a public and private one, and therapy is most effective when both aspects are welcomed. The public persona can sometimes frustrate parents, as he “just won’t talk” about problems and concerns. The ‘private self’ secretly harbors a rich and complex emotional life that has traditionally been the focus of psychotherapy. At Wellspring, we understand that it takes patience and spaciousness to invite the whole boy into the treatment space, and we do so without placing expectations on him. In this way, we can reach a young man’s rich, internal life and help him to develop a full identity, one in which both his public and private selves can be valued and celebrated.
Honoring the active, playful, and at times painful process of male identity formation gives young men the space and support they need to define masculinity for themselves. When boys are seen and heard for all that they are, that’s when they talk, and that’s when therapists are able to listen.
At Wellspring, our clinicians provide treatment that is geared toward the individual, developing a plan that supports his specific needs and challenges. We identify a young man’s goals and then build upon existing skills, knowledge, and strengths in the service of these goals. This therapeutic style supports self-efficacy and can be an adjunct to family therapy or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).
Services are available for:
- Behavior management and dysregulation
- Developmental concerns including identify formation
- Improving emotional awareness
- Low self-esteem
- Loss and Grief
- Bipolar Disorder
- Social/communication skills
- High-Functioning (Level 1) Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Strengths-based family therapy
- Gender and sexual identity issues