Drivers Ed for my Childs Emotions, Thoughts, and Behaviors?

When your teen turned 15 discussions of them using the car and getting their drivers license became a real thing. You may have accompanied them to the DMV to take their permit test and you may have even begun letting them practice their driving skills with you in the car. Eventually they earned their drivers license after dozens of practice hours behind the wheel and passing a standardized test.

Most parents know that scary feeling of seeing their teen grow up, get their license and eventually back out of the driveway on their own. Our minds race with thoughts of all the dangers they may encounter while our hearts thump with a burst of pride and sadness that they are really growing up. Mostly, we hope that they remember what they learned in Drivers Ed class, that drivers around them will obey the laws and that our kids will come home safely at the end of the day.

In things like driving, a graduated experience through permits and instructors makes sense. The responsibility of operating a heavy vehicle on a busy street can be a dangerous thing. A young adult should have specific guidelines to follow as they ease into the responsibility of driving after they have gained the necessary skills.

The same thing is true with operating ones life. And while our culture doesnt require a permit to grow up, the burden and responsibilities of becoming an adult are no less severe than with driving a car. In most cases, it is much more difficult to navigate relationships, deal with our emotions and gain the necessary skills to stay safe on the road of life.

DBT Skills group is your childs Drivers Ed for themselves; it is the handbook and driving lessons that they will need in order to stay safe on the road. This particular handbook is divided into 6 Modules that are learned and practiced over 6 months:

  • Mindfulness (how to learn to be in the moment and control what you focus on).
  • Distress Tolerance (how to survive a crisis without making it worse and how to tolerate distress).
  • Emotion Regulation (how to regulate manage and/or change your emotion).
  • Interpersonal Effectiveness (how to be effective in relationships and improve your communication).
  • Dialectics (how to gain perspective, see the bigger picture and move away from extreme thinking).
  • Self-Management (how to change your own behavior including how to get yourself to do what you dont feel like doing).

Skills Training Group is like formal drive time with an instructor. This groups meets for 2 hours a week. In this class skills are both taught and practiced alongside other students and with facilitators providing coaching and feedback similar to a Drivers Ed instructor. Additionally, group members are invited to attend the pre-group Homework Hour to complete any remaining DBT Skills homework for group or just get some more practice in.

DBT Skills Coaching is like practice time with an older driver. In a one-on-one or very small group, DBT skills coaching insures that your child gets the behind the wheel drive time they need to develop mastery through lots and lots of practice!

Can you imagine taking a piano lesson once a week and not practicing again until your next lesson Frustration and failure are inevitable without the mastery that comes with scheduled practices. Alongside a tutor who can observe and give coaching and feedback, students who attend Skills Coaching master the life skills of DBT more quickly. At Compass, all skills coaching is provided for free.

Ready for your teenager to get on the roads of life with relationships, emotions and other drivers Need some assistance with coaching them to stay safe while theyre in traffic At Compass Behavioral Health we have three DBT Skills Training Groups: Teen Group, Young Adult Group, and Advanced DBT (for graduates of DBT that are 18 years or older).