From about fifteen years of age, through young adulthood (about twenty-five) is a time in our lives that invites much change for all of us. Being a teenager or young adult is an exciting and wonderful time and should be filled with joy and exploration. Unfortunately, we sometimes find ourselves struggling between feeling like we know exactly who we are and what we want, feeling like we are lost and alone and have no direction in our lives. It is a time where we are spreading our wings and claiming ownership of our lives from our parents and family on the one hand, while simultaneously being aware that we are scared and unsure of ourselves. Sometimes we feel our friends are our best support and at other times feel like we can't really say what we are feeling to them or anyone. This is a time when we are supposed to be defining our futures yet frequently have no idea what we would like to do. This makes it difficult to decide on what path we want to take whether, be it career, college, major or job. Then there are our 'first loves' and maybe one or two more relationship that seem like the love of our life. When one of these loves come to an end, feelings of great confusion, devastation, loneliness and mistrust of oneself may occur. You may find yourself wondering "how am I suppose to survive this loss?" Or make sense out of relationships. These are times when having your own place to go to sort yourself out may be useful.

If these struggles aren't enough, as a teenager and young adult we are also faced with making decisions that frequently challenge family values, our own moral values and our own beliefs about how we view ourselves. Making decisions about whether to drink with friends or try a drug with friends or to be sexual with someone you are dating are unique and usually experienced for the first time as a teenager or young adult. As a teenager or young adult we are faced with truly having to make these decisions relying solely on ourselves. On one hand, we tend to be excited to have this power to make our own decisions and on the other hand we can experience a good deal of fear, anxiety, insecurity about ourselves, uncomfortability and embarrassment and shame related to these decisions.

So while our teenage and young adult years are filled with excitement and a sense of self-empowerment, there is a great deal of expectations placed on us by ourselves, our parents and our peers. This collision of all the dimensions of our lives is exciting and sometimes disturbing. Instead of trying to manage the distress that occurs during this time of our lives by yourself, it is a time where having someone like a psychotherapist or counselor who is safe to talk with that is not a parent or a peer can be beneficial, even for a short period of time.

Call me at 303-860-9448 for a free 30 minute phone or in person consultation. I would be delighted to talk with you and discover how to help you with the struggles you may be experiencing.

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