In this video I'll try to explain how can we get a teenager or a group of teenagers in the management of a critical incident they're passing through. During the previous week, we saw how to apply psychological first aid to kids and in this stage which lasts until 12 years old, the adult has the main role. But now we're talking on boys and girls in this transition stage between childhood and adulthood. And as you have seen in the previous video, in which we talked on the stress teenagers suffer daily, this is a stage full of changes and complications. To remind it I insist on the fact that these changes are based on three fundamental axis. The teenager develops in a totally adaptive way a confrontation towards the adult world, in front of all the important adults in his life, because with this opposition he becomes different and tries to find his own models, his own lifestyle. Also, reference figures for teenagers aren't adults, but their equals group, boys and girls of his same age. So we must understand that now he or she will look other teenagers, not adults. And in third place, due to all these changes and due to the difficulty of this stage, impulsiveness and insecurity are strong in the teenager. So that boy or girl we are going to invite to participate on the critical incident management is carrying, as if he was wearing a bag, all these extra difficulties. Despite all the difficulties we've enumerated, it is possible to get teenagers involved in their own critical incident's management. And it's not just possible, it's also recommendable because they don't' have an age in which we can do everything for them. This autonomy they want, they demand and they need means that we should collaborate with them in this moment and that we can get involved in the teenage world. The difficulties of this stage I just talked on, don't make impossible the involvement of teenagers in the management of their own critical incidents. What actually happens is that they modulate it so we must get collaboration between teenagers and adults, usually parents, but also other adults such as the school teachers or other reference people. And this collaboration, which would usually be very complicated in this stage, won't become easier because there has been a critical incident, that's a feeling we usually have. We think that every day, to see what time the teenager comes back home, it's good to have confrontations, but now we have a serious situation, we hope that the teenager becomes the obedient, calm and almost submissive kid he was when he was five or six years old. But of course, he's not five nor six years old, he's a teenager and he will also compete against us. So how can we get this collaboration? Being aware of two undeniable facts. Teenagers need adults to pass through a critical incident management and if this incident has been really serious, they will need us even more, even if they don't like it. But they will need our support. And secondly, adults must be able to admit that in this moment it is hard for them, in front of a critical incident, practice what they would practice in a daily situation which is offering them autonomy and accepting both isolation and the social group's support. When our teenager children are having a bad time, adults and especially parents have a completely healthy protection instinct, which makes us wish we could tuck them just like when they were babies. If we are a psychological first aid provider external to the family, it's good to be able to tell both teenagers and parents that this difficult exists, that it's logic, normal, adaptive and that they will surely find a way to, despite the tense feelings, cooperate and help each other in the moment of the critical incident and, of course, later. How can we achieve this? There isn't a magic formula for it, but we do know that there are four elements which ease us the treatment with teenagers in front of a critical incident so that they feel respected and ready to involve themselves. The first of this formula elements consists on treating the teenager as if he was already an adult. They feel almost adults and deeply appreciate that we don't treat them as kids, which is an attitude to which they are allergic. So we will try to us a language, an attitude and even gestures which will make them understand we have realized they are grown up, they aren't kids and so, they need our support but they don't need to be guarded. The second element is related to information. At these ages it is very important offering information instead of indoctrinating, what does this mean? We will explain what happened and we will omit as much as we can, in this moment in which we are explaining the critical incident, what we think the teenager should and shouldn't do. To begin he will want to know what happened, he will want to have more information, if he needs our advice he'll ask for it. The third element is being available without bothering. Once and another time adults insist on knowing what the teenager needs and so imposing our presence and company. This isn't good, the teenager needs to know we're there, that if he needs us we will be available and he will surely come to us. And the fourth element is respecting the teenager's spaces as much as we can, both when he wants to be alone and when he wants to be with his equals group. As I said before, as adults we are worried and this gives us the feeling that we should do a lot of things to help, to support. If the critical incident is serious we want to comfort, to calm down but we must be able to let the teenager resorts to his friends, to his equals because probably in this moment his friends, his group of equals will comfort him more, will calm him down more than we can as adults. And despite it might be hard we should not only accept it, but even incentive it. Following this formula, what can we do when we are in front of a teenager or a teenagers group and we are going to apply them psychological first aid? The first thing we will do is asking them if it is a good moment to talk. If we want to communicate something, if we want to speak with them, we must ask for permission. And of course, if the teenager tells us he doesn't want to talk, if he prefers doing something else, or simply not talking, if he prefers leaving, if he prefers going out with his friends, we must accept it. Coming back later to offer or pose what we were going to tell him. We will try to encourage the teenager to tell us what he needs, but he won't probably know. So when we encourage him to do it, what we can do is giving him options. Ask him, for example, if he wants to be alone or with his friends, if he is interested on doing the extracurricular activity he usually does, or if he prefers staying home. If he prefers going to the school the next day, if he prefers having a free day, that is, giving many options so that the teenager, who probably feels overflown, can choose the option he thinks might help him. We must always invite him to the activities the family will do, either rituals, being together, taking care of each other but inviting means we won't force him to come. We will tell him which advantages he would have by participating with us from our point of view, but without pressure and we must be very honest on this, because as I've already said many times, for the teenager in that moment the reference is his equals group and he might prefer doing activities with his friends, with his schoolmates and not with us. And although it might be hard, there's a last thing that is important, which is offering the teenage to take part and help in the critical incident management. Usually teenagers don't do anything because no one told them to, but if we ask them if they would like to take care of the younger kids in the family, if they would like to give supper to their small cousins, if they see there is something they'd like to do to help, we will be surprised because they will want to help. Teenagers are very pro-social and although usually this pro-sociality is dedicated to their friends, in a crisis situation, in a family problem they usually like the fact that we ask them if they can do something. Well, and after the list of what we can do, of how we can help the teenager getting involved, we also have the list of what we mustn't do, which is more or less the opposite of what I just said. So we won't force the teenager to talk if he doesn't want to. It is also very important that we don't make expectations on what the teenager should do and what would be good. And either if we are acting as relatives or as psychological first aid providers, it is important that we take a moment to talk about this with the adults that are with the teenagers. It is quite usual that in a crisis situation in a family, a well-intentioned neighbor or even a relative expresses some phrases more or less belonging to common places such as, well, now you must behave properly because it's a difficult moment. Now you're the family man, it depends on you that your mother doesn't suffer that much. Those lines, which are told to a teenager in a high vulnerability moment in which the teenager which is passing through this critical incident has enough problems with trying to understand how will he face this reality, hurt a lot. And it is important that especially you as a psychological first aid provider, warn about this and warn about the fact that this kind of advices shouldn't be given or if they are given they should be ignored.