Loneliness is a complex problem of epidemic proportions, affecting millions from all walks of life.
Verified by Psychology Today
Working with adolescents
Like adults, young people are trying to find meaning in their lives. And when they can't find it, they despair.
Young people never go to therapy because they want to change. They go hoping to stay the same but hoping - secretly - that someone will understand why they don't want to change.
To what extent do sex, death, and hatred end up as unmentionable anxieties hidden away inside a young person? How do we understand, and how do we respond?
Instead of always giving in or always trying to crush it, we have to understand aggression as essentially defensive, as a kind of anxiety, a kind of panic.
Fame or friendship? Fortune or family? When we look back on our lives, on all our youthful promise, what really matters?
If, realistically, we have little control over children watching porn, how do we help them understand what they're watching so that they're not damaged when it comes to real life?
We rush to diagnose rather than listen, panicking when things don't go according to plan. Anxiety is normal and needs to be understood.
Why make up stories, insisting that they're true? What do young people's lies mean and how should we respond?
How to make sense of the adult world without having the identity of a traditional profession? How to develop a sense of personal agency in a world where the rules keep changing?
We avoid having to acknowledge our own baby tendencies when someone else unwittingly expresses them for us.
Therapists listen all the time for anger and despair, for sadness and hatred. But when a young person appears to be feeling nothing? To be entirely empty of feelings? What then?
We pride ourselves on liking young people. So when we inevitably find ourselves disliking some young people, it disturbs our equilibrium. What's going on? How do we move forward?
Young people spend hours teasing each other and being teased. Why? Why do they do it? And how do they learn when to stop?
When young people spurn our best attempts to love and support them, why do they do this?
For young people, all problems provoke primitive anxieties of betrayal: reminders of an original betrayal they can't consciously remember but can't help feeling strongly about.
"I've been self-harming! I think I might be depressed! I'm having suicidal thoughts!" Sometimes these are simply ways of saying, "I'm not a child any more. Take me seriously!"
To what extent do schools present girls with a choice between working and mothering: one seen as laudable, the other as a consolation prize for academic also-rans?
Young people are more interested in our failures than in our successes. But do we dare to tell them about all the ways in which we've failed?
Like so many well-meaning behavioural interventions, the idea of self-esteem is simplistic. Without a secure sense of self, good experiences are likely to wash over us.
In relationships, we need to stop and wonder whether the things we feel belong to us or are unconsciously projected into us by other people.
Young people's appetite for destruction must be recognised if we are to forgive them.
If adults can't contain their own tendencies to split, then what hope is there for young people?
We must be seen by other people to know that we exist and are worth something. But what about the young people who can't bear to be seen?
Sometimes we simply have to bear witness to the effects of other people's cruelty and remember our own capacity to be cruel.
We may have a vested interest in getting teenagers through adolescence as quickly and as painlessly as possible. But often we're only delaying things until later in a person's life
Living with a perpetual sense of inadequacy, teachers get swallowed up by bitterness and despair unless they find opportunities to acknowledge what teaching actually feels like.
Looking for someone to blame.... Wanting to take revenge.... A world of anxieties reduced to a single word.
Our sexualities may not be as straightforward as we'd like to believe.
We become our autobiographies and sometimes they imprison us with their simplicities
Growing older, daughters need their fathers differently.
Nick Luxmoore is a counselor at King Alfred's College, in the U.K.