How to Tell Your Parents You Want to See A Teen Therapist {DBT’s GIVE skills}

How to Tell Your Parents You Want to See A Teen Therapist {DBT’s GIVE skills}

If you think that you may have depression and you’re not sure how to tell your parents about it, this video is created just for you. (upbeat music) Hey I’m Mallory I’m a teen therapist and I love making mental
health videos like this, just for teens. Most of the teens that I work with who do have depression, have
known it for a long time. But they don’t always know
how to tell their parents. And the thing is, that
when you’re under 18, you can’t just make an appointment with a therapist on your own. You need your parent’s permission. Now, of course, therapy is great for helping you have these conversations with your parents. But how do you even tell your parents that you think you need
some professional help? Well this is a question
that popped up recently after I posted one of my videos about four signs that you need
to see a teen therapist. And I thought, you know what? This is a great question,
because you need to know how to talk to your parents before you can get into that appointment. So I highly recommend
using the acronym GIVE from DBT’s interpersonal
effectiveness module, to help guide you through
this conversation. Now, interpersonal
effectiveness, as part of dialectical behavior therapy is all about how to communicate better. And the acronym GIVE reminds us of the four skills that we wanna use when we’re looking to keep and maintain our relationships. Which is especially helpful when you’re a teenager
talking to your parents. So let’s jump into it. The first skill is to be gentle. So this is not the time to get aggravated and start blaming and
yelling at your parents. While you may have known
and recognized this feeling a long time ago, this may be totally new
information to your parents. It may surprise them, they
may be caught off-guard. So making sure that you
are gentle in your tone, words, and approach in talking with them and coming from a loving, kind heart is really gonna help them
hear what you have to say. So one of the strategies
that I like to use in this area is called
the positivity sandwich. And that’s where you start and end on something positive and pleasant. Because most of us tend to remember and react to the first and last things that we heard. These are called the primacy
and the recency effects. So if you start and end on
a pleasant, gentle note, your parents are more
likely to respond in kind. I is to act interested. Even if you know what
your parents are saying is not true, or doesn’t apply, be curious and stay interested what their suggestions are. It may have been things
that you already tried, by letting them speak and
process this information is really important if you want them to do the same for you. So make sure that you are maintaining good eye contact, asking
follow-up questions. Don’t accuse or assume anything. If you don’t understand
what they’re saying or you’re having an angry reaction, ask them about it. Just like you, your parents want to be heard and understood. V is for validating. We all just wanna know
that we’re not crazy. That what we see, feel,
and experience makes sense. And this is where validation comes in. Letting the other person
know their experience is true and real, even
if you disagree with it, is really important. Again, this may be new,
surprising information to your parents. And as parents they obviously
want the best for you. They really want you to
feel well and do well. They may not understand how therapy can help with that. Letting them know like, hey, I totally get that this may seem confusing because sometimes I laugh with my friends, but this is how I’m feeling on the inside. Hugely, hugely, important, letting them know up-front
what their experience is make sense and that you understand that before telling them your response, is gonna go a long way here. And E is to be easy-going. So try your best to keep
the intense emotions out of the conversation. Making sure before you go in to have that talk with your parents that you’ve taken some deep breaths, that you’ve used any of
the coping strategies that we’ve talked about
on this channel before. Anything to help regulate your mood before you go in and have that hardy conversation is gonna be really important. Because if you start to
get angry, irritable, explosive, your parents
are gonna latch onto that and think that
you’re just being a brat, and not wanna hear what
you actually have to say. When you are too emotional,
it actually takes away from the message you’re
trying to give them. So I can’t stress this enough, please don’t ever self-diagnose yourself without getting a professional assessment. Because sometimes we think
we may have depression but then we meet with a therapist and we find out it’s something else. Whatever it’s called,
you just wanna make sure that you’re getting the
right care and support that you need. For example, anxiety and depression can go hand in hand and flip-flop at times. Group counseling can help with both. If you’re interested in learning how, watch the video on your screen right now. And please, please, please, please, please share this video because you never know who it could help. Thanks for watching.



  • Mallory Grimste, LCSW - Teen Therapist

    How do you get through difficult conversations?

  • alyssa montalbano

    love this i was in therapy when i was a teenager and it helped thank you for this

  • from dazz

    Great tips! Saving this for future use!

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