Adolescent Counselling

Summary Content

Adolescence can be a tumultuous time for many individuals. The combination of trying to find your identity, combined with physical, mental, and emotional changes can leave many teens feeling overwhelmed and lost. As a parent, you might have expected sleepless nights in the newborn years but you were surprised at how much sleep you've been losing with worry these days. Yet, your worries simply underscore how you deeply care for your teen.

By taking a holistic approach, our adolescent therapists, Adam Sartore, and Danielle Lall help teens understand where their stress is coming from and learn practical skills to help them manage difficult emotions, improve their self-esteem, and build healthy relationships with others. Contact us today to book your free consultation with our team.

The Adolescent Journey

Adolescence is a time of exciting personal growth and self-discovery, but it also brings with it many social, emotional and physical changes for our teens. At a time when many teens crave greater independence, they also depend on the caring adults in their life to navigate the ever changing landscape of being a teenager. If you are struggling to support your teen or are concerned about their emotional, social or physical wellbeing, booking a session with a counsellor is a great place to start.

Healthy Coping Reduces Distress 

Our adolescent therapist, Adam Satore, uses Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) to support teens who are engaging in self-harm, experiencing suicidal ideation, using drugs or alcohol, or who have difficulty forming healthy relationships. DBT is based on the belief that every experience can hold opposite truths. Life can bring us both moments of joy and moments of deep emotional pain. By learning to accept and tolerate the painful moments of life, we can learn to fully appreciate the moments of joy. DBT is an evidence-based treatment approach which teaches clients four sets of coping skills:

  • Mindfulness skills which teach us to accept the current situation and stay grounded in the present moment.
  • Distress Tolerance skills which teach us healthy coping tools which help us tolerate painful emotions instead of numbing, avoiding or escaping our emotional pain. 
  • Emotional Regulation skills which teach us to manage and change our response to intense emotions.
  • Interpersonal Effectiveness skills which teach us to set healthy boundaries and reduce conflict in our relationships by communicating in a way that is effective and respects ourselves and others. 

Strength-based approach:

Our teen therapist works collaboratively with teens to incorporate each teen’s individual strengths, personal interests and existing support networks into their treatment plans. Helping teens re-engage in pleasurable activities and hobbies can help them reduce stress and find a sense of purpose. Building upon teens’ existing supports and strengths can also help teens feel included and empowered throughout the counselling process. 

How Our Online Adolescent Counselling Works

1. Book a free initial consultation: This 15 minute session allows both adolescents and parents to meet with Adam and explain what you would like to work on with him. During this brief initial introduction, your teen and Adam will see whether they are a good fit for one another and discuss what issues are causing your teen distress. You will also be able to ask Adam any questions you may have about the therapeutic process, or bring up any other concerns.

2. Book an initial assessment: This initial 50-minute session allows Adam to walk you through the counselling process and outline what you can expect from him. We ask all parents/guardians to attend for the 10-15 minutes of the appointment with their teens. This allows all parties to be on the same page about counselling. For the rest of the appointment, Adam will meet individually with your teen to discuss the current issues affecting them and discuss goals to work on together during their counselling journey.

3. Counselling sessions begin: Once the initial assessment takes place, we then move forward to counselling sessions. These sessions can occur on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis depending on your needs. During these sessions Adam will meet individually with your teen to explore what is going on for them and to help integrate coping skills to manage difficult emotions, improve their self-esteem, and build healthy relationships with others. 



Sometimes admitting you need help is the hardest part of the whole process. If you’re ready to take that first challenging step towards living a happier life, contact Holistic Healing today to set up a free initial consultation.


It’s important to have an open and collaborative conversation about why you think seeing a counsellor may help your teen manage their current stresses. Explain your concern and worry but also give them a chance to ask questions. If you see a counsellor yourself and feel comfortable sharing this can also help normalize the value of going to therapy for your teen. It’s also important that your teen feels included in the decision-making process. Looking at the website and the therapist’s bio together can be a helpful starting point.

There are many reasons situations where your teen may benefit from seeing a counsellor including if:

  • They feel anxious or depressed
  • They struggle to fit in and make friends
  • They are withdrawing from friends and hobbies
  • There is a change in their academic performance
  • There have been changes in their family life (e.g. divorce, loss, moving away)
  • There are changes in their sleep and eating patterns
  • They are self-harming or engaging in other risky behaviours
  • They have problems with drug or alcohol use
  • They are experiencing bullying or other peer conflicts
  • They have experienced physical, sexual or emotional abuse 
  • They ask to see a counsellor

During the initial assessment we ask all parents/guardians and the teen to attend. This is so we can discuss the limits of confidentiality and informed consent together.  It is also helpful for the parents/guardians to be present to answer questions about early life experiences that may still affect their teen. After the initial assessment, the preference is to move to working with the teen individually in order to build a strong therapeutic relationship and begin to focus on the issues the teen wants to focus on. 
In the Parent/Guardian consent forms there is a check box to opt in or opt out of being informed about what happens during counselling sessions with your teen. We encourage all parents/guardians to consider opting out of being informed of what happens during counselling sessions with your teen. The purpose of this is to respect the autonomy of your teen and allow them the privacy and space to build good rapport with their therapist. It’s also important for the teen to be an active participant in the counselling process and to be working on goals which are meaningful for them. Regardless of whether you choose to opt in or out, your teen’s therapist will inform you of immediate safety concerns such as suicidal ideation or self-harm risk which affect your teen’s wellbeing. Your teen may also ask you to attend another session or share additional information with you if they think it would be helpful.



Meet our certified therapists, Adam, Selena, Danielle, and Shaheen. No matter what you want to work on, we have a therapist to help. Our Counsellors focus on helping you feel at ease by allowing you to feel heard and understood. By using a holistic, or whole picture approach, our trained Counsellors can help their patients live a happier, more authentic life. Our therapists offer adult counselling, couples counselling, and adolescent/teen counselling. Interested in learning more? Need to book a session? Contact Us here.


Counselling doesn’t just have to be for those who have reached a crisis situation. If you want to live a happier life by discussing the issues that are causing you stress, anxiety, or fear, contact Holistic Healing today to book your free initial consultation.