Note by the author: The following article contains spoilers movies. The films described are therapeutic discussion platforms.
As I was sitting with a new client in the late 20s, I asked if she had consulted before. It did not, but he noticed that it was now "cool" for people to go to healing. I said I was biased and of course agree with her. Many young adults consider that treatment is an acceptable method for treating the uncertainty and desire they experience.
ONE New York Times the article since 2007 talks about creating a new life stage for young adults, "chronic odyssey," where life is improvised, relationships are fluid and there are more working classes to choose than ever.
To serve this population of customers who are pushing social scientists to redefine maturity indicators, therapists need to be aware of these three things that young adult clients want treatment to.
1. They want an ally.
The movie of 2013 The road back shows how powerful a ally may be in a young person's life. The film opens with a teenager, Duncan, who is intimidated by his mother's friend, Trent. While he was forced to live with Trent in the summer, Duncan secretly takes a job at the local water park where he writes with other quirky employees and is led by the manager of the Owen Water Park. Soon he is accepted by this evil and begins to gain confidence in himself.
The big turning point at the end of the movie is when Trent, the bully, meets Owen, the ally. Owen's natural steps between Trent and Duncan, blocking Trent's access to Duncan and forever changing the dynamics in the family. It took only one person to get up once, so Trent, the policeman, lost the power he held over Duncan and his mother. At the end of the film, Duncan has more room to enter his identity and choose his own course of life.
Young adult clients can come to treatment for many reasons. They could fight an inner critical voice and need help to stay with themselves through difficult emotions. Or the fight may appear abroad when there is a conflict with a partner, a friend, a partner or a member of his family. They need an ally who can stand with them and be a buffer between them and the struggle.
The process of treating itself is an ally because it provides room to name the fight, to get out of the race and to discover an identity that is more powerful than the fight. Young adult clients often feel frustrated with good-looking reality checks, and they may wonder why they are not where they thought they would be of such and such ages. For these customers, what may have worked for their elderly can no longer be sustainable. They can hold a belief that something is happening to those who cause them to have such a tough time. This belief can be painful.
Young adults are looking for an ally who can see them as they are and to smooth out the challenges they face. They are looking for an ally who can give them space to express their original thoughts and feel their way forward. They want to know that they are not damaged or broken because they have challenges, but that life has ups and downs and it's important to learn to move them.
Young adults want to find their place in the world and be themselves while they are doing it. This craving to have the delegation and see who they are, albeit inexorably unbearable, can be a catalyst for growth.
2. They want to have a voice in the world.
In Beyond the lights (2014), the main character, Noni, is a world-renowned superstar. Through her childhood and with the help of her mother, she worked hard to do her best to become a famous singer. Her efforts have led her to a household name, but she is not recognizable to herself and deeply unhappy.
At the beginning of the film, it keeps the attention of the world and people either want or wish to be the same. But Noni feels so lost that she is trying to get her own life. A new police officer, Kas, saves her from jumping off a hotel balcony and forms a friendship. Kaz is not impressed by the reputation traps and Noni is beginning to feel safe enough to take off the masks she wore all her life. It begins with the take-off of external masks, such as sexy clothes, fake hair and makeup, and begins to reveal its inner beauty by laughing, linking and listening to its needs. Noni discovers a deep love for singing and performing. The film ends with Noni on stage, comfortable with herself as she is, singing with her authentic voice.
Like Noni, young adult customers may need the ability to make their masks and discover how to use their original voice. They may wear a mask for as long as they do not realize it. They can fight under the weight of negative beliefs and the expectations of other people from them. They may have grown up in a family or culture that silences their voice and their emotional life. Or they may know their inner truth and want a place where they can express sadness, fear and hope.
Treatment can be a safe place for young adults to be with their inner experience. Some may need a place to identify their needs as people. According to Krista Tippett, founder and CEO of "On the Being Project," young adults "have this urgent need for what is possible … This urgent character is tough but also fragile." This urgency urges to cultivate.
Young adults want to find their place in the world and be themselves while they are doing it. This craving to have the delegation and see who they are, albeit inexorably unbearable, can be a catalyst for growth. Young adults want treatment that can help them to keep and understand this tension. They want treatment that appreciates their inner life and their expression, even if it contrasts with cultural conditions.
3. They want an opening process.
In the movie of 2013 The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, regular and quiet summer nights of Walter often for the salvation of the day, the impression of a female colleague and the conflict with an associate of intimidation with superhuman power. There is a craving inside Walter for his lifeless life because at a young age, he had to take responsibility for providing for his family when his father died.
Walter's versatility and character are put to the test when the negative of a valuable photo is lost while in his possession. He chooses to start a trip around the world to find the experienced adventure photographer who took the photo. His journey leads him to dangerous and remote areas, allows him to meet interesting personalities and requires him to test his spirit and courage in a unique way only to come to where he started. When he returns from this changing search, he is able to trust himself and his abilities and is ultimately able to do what he always wanted to do. It corresponds to the whip, impresses its horror, finds the valuable photo negative and reveals the sense of self.
Likewise, many young adults want to learn to trust their skills and character and feel the call of their life to live. They want to experience their dreams in the fires of reality and seek support and guidance. Young adults facing difficult challenges may be able to use these challenges as part of a start-up process. Whether they are withdrawing from old beliefs that no longer work, injure or determine what resembles a successful, essential life, they begin an unknown journey. They want to see how their story will be solved.
The treatment process can help young adults to redefine these challenges as an opportunity for experience, trust, connection and wisdom to flourish from the fertilizer of the conflict. If they want an archetypal work as a transition ceremony, treatment can help them determine how they will see this journey.
Young adults have an advantage as they relate to their therapist and proceed to treatment. The range of their choices of how to live is greater than what will ever be and greater than what has ever been (Arnett, 2018). However, they struggle with the task of leaning themselves into the world as adults and coming to healing to understand what is going on.
Awareness of the world and the forces that play for customers at this stage of life can help therapists to provide the deep nutritional experience that young adults want from the cure.
- Allain, S., Blythewood, R. R., Kavanaugh, R., & Prince-Blythewood, G. (2014). Beyond the lights. [Motion picture]. USA: Family Images.
- Arnett, J.J. (2018). Adolescence and emerging adulthood. Hoboken, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc.
- Brooks, D. (2007, 9 October). The years of odyssey. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/09/opinion/09brooks.html
- Goldwyn, S., Goldwyn, J., Cornfield, S., & Stiller, B. (2013). The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. [Motion picture]. USA: Samuel Goldwyn Films.
- Rice, T., Walsh, J., Faxon, N. & Rash, J. (2013). The way back. [Motion picture]. United States: Sycamore Pictures.
- Tippett, K. (2018, July 23). Living Questions # 2 Retrieved from https://onbeing.org/programs/living-the-questions-2
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