A 16 y.o. recently began living with his mother again, this time with her new husband. His mother wants me to see him to help him adjust. The boy seems fairly normal and clearly is comfortable with his choice. I’d like to do step-family work with the family instead. You know, exploring and adjusting to new roles and rules, etc.
I often opt to see parents and adolescents in pairs.
In this particular family, Mother and son might use their private sessions to air their resentments from the past, their fears for the future and their appreciations of the present. Son and stepfather might begin the long conversation about whether or not “fathering” is what either of them wants.
Roles and rules seem better addressed with everyone present.