Is Your Teenager’s Behavior Negative, Hostile, And Defiant?
Are they characterized by frequent outbursts and destructive behavior?
Do they have trouble making friends and cooperating with others?
Are they argumentative with teachers and other authority figures in their life?
Your child might be resentful, spiteful, or aggressive toward others. Perhaps they refuse to follow social norms or comply with rules and requests. This could lead to trouble in school, sports, and other areas of their life. As a result, you may be wondering if your teenager has oppositional defiant disorder (ODD).
Deep Down, You Just Want A Peaceful And Harmonious Relationship With Your Teen
You probably wish that they would listen to you, follow your rules, and realize that you’re trying to help them. You may feel like you’re going in circles trying to reason with them. What’s more, you might experience negative reactions from people in your community—as if you’re to blame for your child’s misbehavior.
You deserve to have someone in your corner. You deserve someone who understands how Oppositional Defiant Disorder affects a teen’s life. At Equity Associates, our compassionate approach to therapy can help teenagers with Oppositional Defiant Disorder improve their academic and social functioning and deepen their relationship with their parents.
ODD Is Widely Common, But Widely Underdiagnosed
Oppositional Defiant Disorder affects roughly 16 percent of adolescents.* Unfortunately, many disruptive behavior disorders like ODD are underdiagnosed and many kids with ODD are misdiagnosed with other mental health conditions. Disruptive behaviors are common to both ODD and ADHD, making it hard for parents and teachers to tell the conditions apart.
Teens with ODD often deal with social and academic problems and are generally at an increased risk for substance abuse and other risky behaviors. They’re also more likely to self-harm than other teens. Early intervention and treatment is the best way to improve outcomes for teens with ODD.
Traumatic Experiences Are Often At The Root Of ODD
There are many different factors that can lead to the onset of ODD. Teens who experience emotional, sexual, and physical abuse are generally at a higher risk of developing ODD. So are teens who suffer from bullying, rejection, and negative school experiences.
In many ways, it’s only natural for teens who live in stressful, conflict-heavy environments to become oppositional and defiant. The hostility that they receive from the outside world makes them become hostile in return. As a parent, you’ve probably tried all you can to show your child love, understanding, and compassion. But sometimes even the best parents need extra support.
Therapy Can Help Teens With Oppositional Defiant Disorder Learn New Ways Of Interacting With The World
What teens with ODD need most is someone who can empathize with their struggles and recognize that their misbehavior stems from deeper emotional pain. That’s what therapy provides. Instead of judging or correcting your teenager, our therapists will give your teen a safe, supportive space to explore their feelings and experiences. Your teen will be met with gentleness and kindness and will learn strategies for controlling their emotions and improving their social skills.
What To Expect In ODD Counseling Sessions
Equity Associates offers both individual and group therapy. In general, we find that group therapy is especially powerful for teens. Being able to talk to other kids with ODD can be so liberating and empowering for your teen, helping them see that they’re not alone and that other kids share their emotional challenges.
Additionally, our practice provides school-based mental health care for teens struggling with ODD. Integrating therapy into the school setting makes it easier for teens to receive timely and convenient care throughout their day. A school-based mental health care model also helps reduce the stigma around therapy, normalizing the need for students to get emotional support at school.
Creating Your Teen’s ODD Treatment Plan
We often take a narrative approach to therapy for teens with Oppositional Defiant Disorder. The goal of this approach is to help your teen create a narrative that acknowledges their challenges while highlighting their strengths and abilities. A narrative approach can also help your teenager develop a sense of agency and empowerment, which can facilitate positive change in every area of their life.
To give teens new skills for managing ODD, our therapists use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This approach offers various strategies for challenging distorted thought patterns, developing new problem-solving skills, and practicing relaxation and mindfulness. It can help teens with ODD overcome negative beliefs about themselves and improve their behavior as a result.
Ultimately, ODD is a very treatable condition. With the right interventions, your teenager can manage their emotions effectively, develop more positive coping strategies, and learn new ways of interacting with the world around them.
You May Have Some Questions And Concerns About Therapy For Oppositional Defiant Disorder…
I don’t want my teenager to be judged for their behavior.
Our narrative approach focuses not on labeling your child, but on exploring and understanding the factors that have contributed to their behavior. We will highlight their strengths and positive qualities, emphasizing that negative behaviors do not define them and that growth and change are possible.
If my teen has ODD, doesn’t that mean I’m not a good parent?
Your child’s struggles are not a reflection of your parenting. The fact that you’re reading this page shows that you genuinely care about your child and are willing to invest in their wellbeing. What’s more, therapy with us is not about judging your parenting, but about helping your teenager learn new ways of managing and externalizing their challenges with ODD.
Nothing that we’ve tried so far has worked. How will this be any different?
Finding the right treatment is hard. The good news is that we draw from a wide variety of approaches to help teens rewrite their stories, regulate their emotions, and reframe negative beliefs. The healing process may take time and effort, but we will work collaboratively with both you and your teen to implement strategies that are uniquely tailored to their situation.
Your Teenager Doesn’t Have To Keep Struggling
With the right support, they can overcome defiant behaviors and improve their relationship with you. To get connected to a therapist who treats ODD, use the contact form or call us at 866-633-4288 to schedule a free 30-minute phone consultation.