How you can help your young person


Young people seek help from Youth Talk for many reasons. They may have problems at school, at home, with friends or have mental health issues such as depression, self- harming or eating disorders. These issues affect 13-25 year olds from all backgrounds. Research shows that early intervention is important in helping them deal with the situation.

It may be very frightening and confusing as a parent/carer to find that your young person is in distress and is considering counselling. Supporting them in their choice to seek help through a counselling service such as Youth Talk in St Albans can be one way of helping them. You may want to talk to your GP too. Call Youth Talk on: 01727 868684.

If your young person does not want to see a professional, this can be frustrating. All you can do at this stage is give them the information, be ready to listen when they want to talk (but without asking for specific feedback on how the counselling is going)and find out more about how counselling works. Useful websites include: www.youngminds.org.uk and www.familylives.org.uk. Or talk to Youth Talk. 01727 868684

What happens next?

The young person needs to make contact directly with Youth Talk to start the counselling process. It is important that this is their choice as motivation is crucial to the success of the psychological work. The service is confidential. They make an appointment with the counsellor at our premises in St Albans and come once a week.

Why is Youth Talk counselling confidential?

This is part of ethical practice in counselling. The counsellor will have agreed to a confidential relationship with the young person and has a duty to stick to this. The only rare exception to this would be if the counsellor thought the young person was at serious risk of harming themselves or others. The counsellor is not there to judge you or anyone else in your family, their sole purpose is to help your young person manage their mental health.

My child wants the whole family to be involved. Is this possible?

If you or your child want the family to be involved, you may want to seek family therapy through your GP or privately through, for example, the British Association for Counselling Psychotherapy (bacp) www.itsgoodtotalk.org.uk

Is there any support out there to help me deal with this?

You may feel helpless, scared or angry if your young person is displaying distressed or disturbed behaviour. This is normal, but it may be useful to talk to a counsellor about these feelings. It can have a powerful knock on effect if parents/carers begin to get help for their own feelings of distress and anxiety about the situation and help lower tensions or other blocks to positive communication. You can find a counsellor through the British Association for Counselling Psychotherapy (bacp) www.itsgoodtotalk.org.uk

My young person came to Youth Talk and is now doing much better. Is there anything I can do to give back?

Familes or friends whose young people have benefited from our counselling can help us by making a regular donation if you are able. If you cannot give a regular donation, please consider giving a one-off donation. We urgently need funds. Although we do not charge a fee, it costs us money to provide the counselling. More than half our income is from individual and company donations and without this funding we could not continue to provide our service to young people. On average, we see around 50 young people each week.

If you feel you can donate please click here.


Our counselling services are available to young people aged between 13 and 25 who live, work or attend school/college in the District of St Albans (Harpenden, London Colney, Redbourn, St Albans, Sandridge and Wheathampstead).

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