Why having your son go to therapy is a good idea for his future:
Here are some reasons I believe having your son go to therapy is extremely beneficial to help with whatever is going on in his life and he can learn some more important lessons he will need as he gets older and becomes a man.
- Many boys don’t understand how they are feeling:
You heard me correctly; many boys are not sure how they are feeling a lot of the time. In Western society, in general, we aren’t raised this way. Girls are taught to nurture one another at a young age and talk about their feelings, which helps them better understand them. Boys are more likely to keep their feelings inside, not processing them which could lead to confusion, anger, anxiety, or depression now or later in life. Understanding your feelings is a skill that must be learned.
- Developing a language for feelings and mood:
When a boy comes to therapy, I work to teach him to develop and become comfortable with the language for how he feels and understanding his moods. It is important to normalize that everyone has bad days, becomes anxious about the stress in their lives, becomes angry, and feels sad sometimes. This happens to everyone. I often find that boys want to be tough, they don’t want to admit that they are feeling a certain way, until they find an environment where it’s normalized and praised. In therapy, this new language becomes a normal part of discussions and boys tend to become more open authentically share how they are feeling.
3. Learning the skill of self reflection in an attempt to gain more self awareness.
A big part of therapy at any age is taking the time to learn to think critically via self reflection. I spend a lot of time processing situations that have already happened or that will be happening in the future that are important to the boys I’m working with. It’s important that they take the time to self reflect and process how they felt when they scored in their soccer game or when they got back their science test with a D. This processing time is so important because it’s essential to understand how kids think about themselves and how they fit into the world. How your son thinks about himself and his life has a direct impact on how he feels about himself and his life. A big part of therapy is learning this lesson and learning that we have a lot of power over our feelings because we have a lot of power over our thoughts. My goal is for kids to be able to understand this relationship, ultimately gaining a deeper sense of self awareness.
- These skills are generalizable to current and future relationships:
Learning about and having your feelings normalized, developing a language to put your feelings into words, understanding the relationship between your thoughts and feelings, and having support in processing important situations in your life are all hugely beneficial skills for your son to develop. Therapy can be so helpful and sometimes life changing in so many ways. Gaining deeper self awareness via enhanced understanding your inner world will eventually help you better understand and be empathetic toward other’s feelings. In summary, learning these skills in therapy will help your son navigate the world with more confidence and grace which will help him be a better friend, brother, and maybe someday, husband.