Just Sleep and Eat!

Dear Anita Nanswer,

This is a question that requires us to assess what is truly happening. Most teenagers like to sleep and eat – and tend to be unproductive.  Does my teen fall within the realm of normal development? If so, we can set daily goals for our teen and calmly prod them to achieve some level of productivity.

Trauma-impacted teens, however, have a few more layers we have to examine. Is my teen depressed? Depression can result in the desire to sleep more and it hinders productivity. If this is the case, we need to have our teen seen by a professional to evaluate the need for medication or therapy to help get him/her “unstuck” and moving forward again. Addiction to pornography, video games, or other substances can also cause lethargy and resistance to doing anything productive. Again, if this is the case, it is important to seek professional help to determine the source of the addiction and the course of treatment.

Parents can put structure in place, but if the teen is consistently resistant, it is prudent to begin looking for the underlying issues so forward movement can be achieved.

For children and families,