Behind the Counselor’s Door: Teenagers’ True Confessions, Trials, and Triumphs
While he enjoyed certain aspects of the field, Kevin Kuczynski eventually realized that his work in private practice counseling was “reactionary” to the damage that that had already been done to his clients. His sessions with teenage clients were intense and lengthy, and he wanted to do more to help them before such problems arose. Behind the Counselor’s Door is Kuczynski’s account of his work as a school counselor and the stories of some of the teenagers he helped.
Behind the Counselor’s Door is separated into sixteen chapters that focus on specific topics Kuczynski addressed with some of his clients. While the obvious areas a school counselor might focus on are certainly present—college planning, community service, homework—Kuczynski also helped teenagers with issues relating to social media, friendships, sex, grief, family, work ethic, and substance abuse. After each chapter, the “Points to Ponder” checklist features important ideas and questions to further the reader’s involvement with the issues discussed.
Many of the stories Kuczynski shares are about issues that readers may have experienced or heard of before. For example, there’s Brian, who neglected homework and was not on track to graduate, or Allana, a strong student who lacked the motivation to push herself to really excel. Other stories are much less common, like that of Rachel, whose divorced parents lived together, or Demetrius, who only attended school for a brief time in his native Lebanon for fear of bombs and shootings.
The exceptional appeal of Behind the Counselor’s Door is that it doesn’t just speak to one population. The book is written for teenagers, who can attain all kinds of information to help them through high school as well as through hard times in their lives. However, parents of teenagers can also gain insight from Kuczynski’s experiences and the ways that problems at school can be attributed to other factors such as home life and friendships. Additionally, counselors who work with teenagers can benefit from Kuczynski’s knowledge and experience in counseling and dealing with everything from dating problems to academic success.
Behind the Counselor’s Door is an extraordinary look into the inner lives of teenagers and what they face every day. Kuczynski captures the spirit of teenage and high school life and is able to extract valuable life lessons and advice that many different readers will benefit from.
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