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  • Sam DiFranco

Tips For Raising Troubled Teens

The Star Point Counseling Center provides counseling in Brandon as well as counseling in Tampa and surrounding areas to parents of children of all ages. The Clinical Director, Clarissa Crystal-Belle, LMHC provides Mental Health Services while the Executive Director, Sam DiFranco provides Life Coaching services to families seeking tools, skills, and strategies for improving the quality of family life in the home.

Clarissa wants to direct the content of this blog to parents of preteens and teens. Confrontation and incrimination often cause a barrier between parent and teen, she said. Her suggestion for modifying a teen’s attitude or behavior is this;  “Whenever you feel the urge to push, pull instead!” When you are tempted to say, “get out!,” instead say, “come here!” while patting the seat beside you, or turning your stance slightly to the side, as if to make room for your son or daughter to safely enter your personal space. Repeat the invitation, “Come on. Come over here for a minute.”

Of course, depending on how forceful you, the parent, have been in the past, the (pre)teenager might be intimadated at first. He or she might tell you, in no uncertain terms, that approaching you is the last thing that is going to happen. This is not the response they want to give, but it is one they have learned to give, because approaching you, looking into your eyes, hearing the words coming out of your mouth, or standing within arms reach of you, has hurt them, in the past, and ultimately made them mad. It is likely that the parent-child relationship has become so automatic in the way you hurt each other, that it will take many invitations before you are to be believed.

Clarissa speaks to parents and teachers of pre-teens and teenagers, explaining how to avoid the escalation of negativity and anger in parent/child and teacher/student communication. She works with young people and their families in Brandon, Tampa, and surrounding areas. At the Star Point Counseling Center, she helps parents learn how to de-escalate conflict in the family home while dissolving communication barriers and improving family relationships. She teaches parents how to turn willfulness into willingness, defiance into compliance, and resistance to authority into acceptance of, respect for, and adherence to reasonable rules, laws, and limits at home and at school.

Check out our website at StarpointCounselingTampa to learn more about Clarissa Crystal-Belle, LMHC and the services offered at the Star Point Counseling Center located in between Brandon, Florida and Tampa, Florida. Stay tuned for more tips from Clarissa and if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, email to

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