Over the course of our many years serving adolescent girls and their families, New Haven's commitment to a highly relational approach to treatment has evolved into the Family Works© model. The Family Works© approach to treatment is based on our core therapeutic philosophy and is family focused, values based, and multi-systemic; these three foundational elements make for a clinically sophisticated program that puts relationship at the center of the healing process. The Family Works© approach requires that our team members operate in a manner that is highly accessible, well-coordinated, and deeply connected.
All of our departments, from dietary to treatment to academics, function as a single team to support your daughter's healing and growth.
Family Systems Approach
The family systems approach is a supportive, non-judgmental style of therapy that engages the entire family in a cooperative process of growth. Troubled teenage girls respond well to family-based treatment because they know that the treatment focus is not solely on them; they no longer feel the shame of being "the problem" in the family. We often hear parents wonder out loud why New Haven is working when other treatment centers have not. Our research-based, heart-driven approach to family work creates a safe emotional environment in which families can make lasting changes.
A family-systems approach is fundamentally relational. Treatment centers for years were based on a behavior-modification model which can be abusive and doesn't work. Research shows that one of the most effective sources of hope and change is the relationship a troubled teenage girl has with her therapist. New Haven focuses its entire program around nurturing healthy, healing relationships. Struggling adolescent girls are much more likely to change in a nurturing atmosphere, where they encounter kind, competent, virtuous people. This allows girls to practice new skills and positive behaviors in a context of health, so that they are prepared to return home to the relationships that matter most – family relationships.
We know from experience and from research that lasting change occurs when the whole family is engaged in a coordinated process of growth and change. New Haven applies all of its resources to helping families heal from the past, thrive in the present, and move toward a hopeful future, hand-in-hand with their daughters.
Your daughter's world is comprised of numerous systems – family, school, friends, treatment team, etc. – all of which are connected and each of which can either support or impede her healing. In clinical language, that means we're all part of a network of interdependent systems that must be coordinated for healing to occur; in simpler language, it means that we're all in this together. Our application of multi-systemic clinical research allows us to provide one of the most robust treatment approaches available. A team member from every system – academic, therapeutic, student life, and medical – meets every week to discuss every girl in depth. We also regularly engage the most important system – your family – through weekly calls, weekly family therapy, and on-campus events.
Young women need a framework for positive decision making based on universal values such as compassion, service, creativity, and integrity. Without such a framework, navigating the storms of adolescence can seem impossible. Our Values Program creates an opportunity for you and your daughter to connect deeply with each other as you discover, clarify, and live out your own and your family's deepest values – the things that unite you and give you purpose as a family. Just as the New Haven team has built success on a strong foundation of shared values, so each family we work with has the opportunity to create, repair, or strengthen its own unique foundation.
New Haven has a long history of embracing families and nurturing change. Since its founding in 1996, this work has been guided by six core values: Love, Locus of Control, Family, Selflessness, Values, and Spirituality. These values are the basis for every programmatic, therapeutic, and organizational decision we make; they're also the strong connective tissue that has held our team together for so many successful years.
Your daughter can change and heal more easily in a loving environment. By modeling it ourselves we effectively teach her how to give and receive love and respect. We encourage our students to express care to their family, divine source, teachers, therapists, peers, community, and all living creatures.
Locus of Control
Where your daughter perceives her locus, or center point, of control to be is central to her ability to manage her own life. If she believes that she is being controlled externally (i.e. by family, luck, a perpetrator or society) she will lack a sense of personal control in her life. New Haven can help your daughter change her perceived locus of control from an external place to an internal one. An internal locus of control empowers her to actively make positive changes in her life and abandon the passive stance of victimhood. This change fosters responsibility, accountability and empowerment.
Family involvement is central to New Haven's treatment philosophy. We realize that lasting change in your daughter only occurs if your family changes in unison with her. Through family events, family therapy, and parent coaching, we invite families to join their daughters in a process of grieving, growing, forgiving, and healing.
Selfish and destructive decisions can, over time, deeply erode self-esteem. As feelings of self-worth disappear, young women frequently fall into a defeating pattern of justification, rationalization, and other defense mechanisms that, in turn, lead to depression, anxiety, and other emotional problems. This self-reinforcing pattern can be broken by a shift to an outward, service-oriented focus. Our girls, their families, and our staff are proof positive of the healing power of service. The more your daughter reaches out to others, the more she will discover her own worth and sense of purpose.
True happiness and peace are only available to the extent that your daughter's behavior aligns with a clear set of positive personal values. At New Haven, we encourage your daughter to uncover, articulate, and cherish her own value system and to align her life with those values.
We believe that every human life is sacred. A person's spirituality – or sense of connectedness to something divine – can provide the deepest sense of meaning, purpose, and direction.