Goodbye ACA community, I’m really going to miss you all. After 4 years at AUHSD, I will be taking a break from school and joining a group therapy practice where I can deepen my work with individual teens, adults, and families.
I want to pass along a successful problem-solving framework I’ve practiced as a therapist/ adult-peer interacting with teens for 8 hours/day and as a parent of a vivacious and opinionated 10 year old:
- Allow your kid to re-regulate and find their calm when they are experiencing intense emotions. The techniques are countless (e.g., private space, box-breathing, fidgeting, going outside, music, venting/talking, hugs) and each individual needs to find what works for them.
- Listen hard and acknowledge the truth in what your kid is saying. Even if you do not agree, there is always a kernel of truth in what they are saying. By identifying their truth, they will feel heard and will allow you to support them.
- Help connect your kid to a core strength that they identify with and use that to problem-solve. Each person has their own “thing” that they are proud of and motivates them. Accessing this spark serves as an inner compass that they will heed more than any advice we give them.
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to develop a space at school where our kids can find community, self-advocate for their mental health, and just be the unique individuals they are. If you would like to keep in touch, you can reach me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
All the Best,
Allen Choi, MSW, PPS, JD