View Full Version : Working with teens

11-08-07, 06:23 PM
I've started hanging out here because I'm seriously thinking of a career change that would allow me to work more closely with teens -- say, as a school [guidance] counselor or something.

I'm just curious what teens on here think would go into being good at this job? Or if anyone has any ideas how they'd go about finding out whether this is the right step?

11-08-07, 11:50 PM
*attempts not to make this long*

1. ACCTUALLY CARE - You must show interest, weither you are interested or not. If you don't show you care (its better that you DO care and not just pretend), you'll offend them and they'll resent you for it, or you could really hurt someone's feelings .

2. DON'T TAKE YOUR PROBLEMS OUT ON THE KIDS - If your ****ed, the worst thing to do is take it out on the students. They will resent you for it big time.

3. BE THEIR "TRUSTED ADULT" NOT THEIR SUPERIOR - You're gonna want to make the kids feel like you're their "trusted adult" and they can come to you with various problems and have your trust. Don't act all pompous and play the "im the teacher and you're the slowly student maggot" card and make the student feel small and insignificant. I really don't know how to explains this more then don't have a god complex and have a "holier then thou" attitude when working with the students.

Well theres my 2 cents of experience. I've dealed with shrinks, guidance counselors, and teachers that really make me wonder why they took those jobs when they could care about their students/clients. Alot of em. I've only had one councelor and my current psychatrist and medicine doctor that acctually gave a crap.

Really if you do decide to go into this feel, be true and really care. Alot of these teens are scared, depressed, alone and are really desperate to find something they can reach to that understands and really wants to help them. Its a terrible shock to the system of a depressed person when the person they go to for help ends up hurting them even more. I always looked up to teachers as being those who cared and wanted to help, but many of them could care less and I don't understand why'd they even bother with this job if they don't care. I've been in tears many times when I was shot down by the people I really thought could help me out. I have a strong distrust for many teachers now because of my bad experiences, I'm too scared to be hurt again.

So if you choose to be a counselor, be the kind of counselor that can give kids in simular situations; whos trusts were betrayed, hope, kind words, good advice, a ear to listen, and a hand to help give them the ability to trust again and overcome obstacles without falling apart. Sometimes all it takes is some kind words and your time to listen and talk to someone to really make their day and to give them confidence and hope.

11-09-07, 12:14 PM
Thanks for a very helpful reply.

*attempts not to make this long*Heh, no worries -- I was trying not to make my OP long. If you have more to say, I'm definitely interested.

I've dealed with shrinks, guidance counselors, and teachers that really make me wonder why they took those jobs when they could care about their students/clients.Yeah, that's what confuses me. With the exception of shrinks, none of these are what I would consider high-paying jobs, careers that someone would pursue just for the money. So I would think that the motivation to pursue those jobs would be similar to mine, a desire to really make a difference in someone's life.

Maybe they mean well but aren't skilled enough to show it?

I'm glad to hear that your current psychiatrist and doctor are better though.

Also, regarding point 3, about the "God complex" -- that's actually what worries me about being in a structured setting like this. Not that I want to have authority and lord it over the kids I'm working with. To the contrary -- that I would see myself in a cooperative relationship with the people I work with, and be accused of over-identification or somehow not acting as an authority figure by my employer.

That's why I'm thinking through these issues now. I don't want to take a step like this unless I can really be excellent at it -- not for my own ego, but because teens really don't need someone who's mediocre at this role just so I can feel better about myself!

Thanks again.

11-27-07, 02:12 AM
My school has this really cool guidance program where we actually have it as a class and its what i look foward to every week. it gives kids a chance to really get to know their guidance counselor so they will actually trust them to go to if they need help.

This sounds perfect for the kind of thing you want to do so maybe if you found a school with a similar program in your area!

hope that helps you maybe =]

12-07-07, 10:33 PM
That is really cool We are assigned counclers but I do not know nor do I care for mine I know that their are a lot of kids that each is assigned but they did not even bothered to see me for sceduling.They know I am here lol .I hate some teachers in the special ed and guidance.The first thing they say to you when you want to go to a higher class college prep honors ap ect. they say are you sure it will be very hard you should stay in what you are in now.It is like yes i am sure i want to challange myself i want to be with other people with intellagance I want to be with other people who understand what is going on in the class and have a real disscussion on it instead of talking about how the teacher has to waste an entire period trying to reteach things that the other students did not get or waste it trying to make them shut up.I am so tired of teachers espishally special ed teachers thinking that i am mentally disabled because i have a learning disibility I might not be able to spell it correctly but spelling is not my life.Ugh lol sorry didnt mean to rant my classes are and in class soppourt teacher is annoying me :p