Growing Pains:
Trauma in Adolescents

Group therapy is the number one choice for treating adolescents in general. But this approach is very effective for adolescents who’ve experienced trauma. Most adolescents spend majority of their time in groups, being with peers, and are more comfortable with peers than with adults. The group, which provides a holding and support, comes to be felt as the “mother group” (Scheidlinger, 1974), and becomes a transitional object for the adolescent, allowing the adolescent to proceed along the normal developmental pathways.

This is a 20-week group that focuses on trauma. There is limited space in that 8 individuals are screened and selected. Cost: $45 per member, per session. Groups are forming for the Spring. Register here to save your space. Additional intake sheets will be sent to you via email or regular mail prior to the start of Group.

Next Group begins


Who should attend:

  • This group is for ages 14-18

  • This group is for individuals who have experienced trauma

    • According to van der Kolk (1997), a noted expert in the field of trauma, trauma “by definition, is the result of exposure to an inescapably stressful event that overwhelms the person’s coping mechanisms.”

Goals for treatment:

  • To create a safe environment for exploration which is extremely important with traumatized adolescents.  

  • To reduce problematic feelings and behaviors

  • To reduce the feelings of isolation and reestablish the connections with peers for support and feedback inside and outside the group.

  • To address the changes in the assumptive world that occurred as the result of the trauma.

    • By reaching into the core beliefs and assumptions about the world

    • Addressing areas of: interpersonal relations, sense of mastery, and empowerment.


Additional Resources

Scheidlinger, S. (1974). On the concept of the “mother group.” International Journal of Group Psychotherapy, 24, 417-428.

van der Kolk, B. (1997). Post-traumatic stress disorder and memory. Psychiatric Times (online serial), 14 (3).

Group interventions for treatment of trauma in adolescents (PDF)