Does your teen have trouble controlling anger of aggression? Are you worried about harmful behavior like cutting, substance abuse, or hanging with the wrong crowd? Are mood swings becoming too much to handle?
Every teen deserves opportunity to succeed in life. When things start to spiral out of control, getting help from a professional may make a big difference for your child’s future.
Uninsured, under-insured, and insured families can access a variety of free mental health and counseling services at The Bridge for Youth. Located just a block off of Hennepin Avenue in Uptown, The Bridge has been helping teens and families for over 40 years.
Trained counselors staff the Bridge’s 24-hour crisis hotline. Teens and parents phone when they need to blow off steam about a family crisis or when they need help for a more serious family crisis.
If you suspect your child has mental health issues stemming from trauma, physical or sexual abuse, depression, or peer issues, you may want to get a diagnostic assessment for your teen. Assessments provide new information on how to address difficult behavioral issues.
15-year-old Antoine was a frequent runaway. His Mom was angry and frustrated that Antoine wouldn’t follow rules. After Antoine was charged with a petty theft, she was ready to give up.
Antoine’s Mom dropped him off at The Bridge for Youth’s Emergency Shelter. She needed to cool down. After spending a few days getting to know Antoine, a counselor at The Bridge suggested Antoine undergo a diagnostic assessment. The results of the assessment have dramatically altered Antoine’s relationship with his Mom.
“I had overlooked some issues that Antoine was dealing with. He had experienced a lot of trauma at a young age. And, he had some physical limitations. The assessment indicated that Antoine’s decision-making skills and cognitive abilities were like those of a 10-year-old.”
This information felt right to Antoine’s Mom. But, now what?
Working with new information, Antoine’s Mom and her counselor identified ways to modify parenting expectations and techniques. “I couldn’t expect Antoine to act like other kids his age. I needed to be more patient, give him easier instructions, and write things down.”
The parenting tips helped. Antoine sensed a difference in his Mom and he too worked to change his behavior.
Each month, the family meets with a counselor at The Bridge to stay on track. Insurance pays their cab fare to their therapy appointment.
Walk-in and appointment-based counseling services are available Monday through Saturday at The Bridge. Teens are also encouraged to drop in, particularly during after school hours from 3-5 p.m.
Call 612-377-8800 for information or to schedule an appointment. Additional information can be found at www.bridgeforyouth.org