When Evan came to WYS he was having suicidal thoughts, auditory hallucinations and social anxiety. He was also struggling with failure to communicate feelings, and problems eating and sleeping regularly — all of which were greatly impacting his grades at school.
Evan was demonstrating a high degree of hopelessness, non-compliance with his medication, and resistance to therapeutic services.
Engaging Family for Critical Support
As he was contending with multiple issues, his WYS therapist knew that Evan needed the support of his family. Evan and his family used their family sessions to strengthen the parent- child relationship, and the therapist provided psychoeducation about mental illness while encouraging his mother’s active support. Also, Evan had individual therapy and a TBS coach — someone to help him at home with using the skills he was learning in therapy.
The coach also encouraged Evan to take responsibility for his mental health by taking his medication daily, and supported him in taking risks outside his comfort zone by engaging in some social activities.
Using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) techniques, the therapist assisted Evan in challenging negative self-talk, accepting acknowledgements, and setting and achieving goals. Evan also participated in group therapy to practice managing social anxiety, improving the social skills he’d learned, and eventually improving his socialization outside of the group.
Reaching His Full Potential
At graduation, Evan was participating in an alternative education setting and was on track to graduate early, had applied for college, and was working in a part-time job as well as volunteering at a pet store.
He was feeling more hopeful about his future, had eliminated suicidal thoughts, and was practicing better time management, self-care and becoming independent. Although his auditory hallucinations were still present, they were more effectively managed and interfering less in his day-to-day life.