THERAPY AT UINTA ACADEMY
Each student is assigned to a licensed psychotherapist who manages their treatment. They meet with their therapist for a minimum of two sessions each week for private, individual psychotherapy. The therapist is also available to meet for “incidental” therapy when a student requests additional time to talk or if they are struggling.
Individual therapy provides an opportunity for the student and the therapist to focus on unique needs. The goals of individual therapy are to increase a student's awareness and capacity for self-observation and to develop insight into their cognition, emotions, and core beliefs. Their increased insight will help them understand how they can use their strengths to make healthy choices of thought, feeling, or action and to better manage discomfort or distress.
A very important aspect of successful therapy is the relationship a student has with her therapist. If they feel accepted, safe, and secure, they will be able to open up and look at themselves. Because the therapists’ offices are in the home, they have the unique opportunity to participate with the students in their daily activities. This gives the therapist first-hand observation of each student's behavior and presents opportunity for creating a knowledgeable, supportive alliance with the young women.
Our experience shows us that lasting change occurs when the whole family is engaged in a coordinated process of growth. Girls who are struggling are more likely to make necessary changes if they feel that the entire family system is cooperatively changing. Parents can walk hand-in-hand with their daughters through the treatment process through participation in family therapy. These weekly sessions are conducted by phone, Skype conferencing, or face-to-face sessions when parents are visiting. Family sessions are focused on helping families resolve conflict, improve family communication and problem solving, and restore trusting relationships. These sessions give parents and daughters the opportunity to work through difficult issues, align goals and efforts, provide support to each other, and develop strategies for a successful transition home.
At Uinta, lasting change takes place because we invite the entire family to work in a unified way to grow and make changes. Uinta has been a leader is involving parents in the treatment process by allowing immediate and frequent family contact, implementing a family systems approach, and encouraging family participation in on-campus training and family weekends.
As soon as a young adult arrives at Uinta, they are encouraged to have frequent phone and mail contact with their family. Families can visit the child every month. When families are visiting, they may participate in face-to-face family therapy or parent training sessions. As a young adult progresses through treatment, home visits provide an opportunity for the entire family to practice new skills, establish new patterns, and spend quality time together.
Twice a year, families can participate directly in the Uinta experience during our family weekends. During the family weekends, parents and their child participate in educational presentations, parent instruction, group therapy, and experiential therapy. These three-day weekends allow parents to connect with other parents and engage in the therapeutic process with their child at a deeper level. The connection and support fostered during the family weekend is a key element in maintaining momentum during the healthy struggle of treatment.
Because of the powerful influence that the peer group wields during adolescence, group therapy is a powerful tool for growth and change at Uinta Academy. Most of our young adults have struggled to form a healthy identity and find their place with their peers. The power of group therapy lies in the unique opportunity for individuals to receive perspectives, support, encouragement, and feedback from other young adults in a safe and accepting environment. Process groups also give individuals an opportunity to deepen their level of self-awareness and how they communicate and relate to others. Rather than focus on individual differences, the individuals are encouraged to support each other in a way that promotes growth. While processing issues in a group, the individuals learn how to identify and communicate their feelings in a manner that presents their “true self” and promotes healthy acceptance and relationships.
Uinta Academy offers the largest selection of groups in residential treatment. These groups were carefully selected to address issues that young women experience.
Psychoeducation and process group regarding client's adoption. Group members participate in discussion, art, and other learning activities to explore feelings and emotions around their adoptions. Clients can share their stories while offering support to others.
Psychoeducational and process group regarding grief and loss. Group members participate in discussion, arts, and learning activities to explore emotions, build skills, and work towards acceptance and integration of the death of loved ones.
Psychoeducational and process group regarding client's chemical dependency. Group members participate in discussion, art, and other learning activities to explore the reasons behind chemical dependency. Clients also work to create a personalized, comprehensive relapse prevention plan.
Psychoeducational and process group regarding the client's sexual trauma. Group members participate in discussion, art, and other learning activities to process their sexual trauma. Clients also can share their sexual trauma "story" while offering support to others.
The addictions group teaches clients about addictive and compulsive thinking patterns and behaviors (i.e., substances, cutting, compulsive stealing). The group discusses addiction identification, the addiction cycle, the harmful effects of addictive behavior, and thinking errors associated with addictive cognition.
Psychoeducational group focusing on appropriate relational, emotional, physical, and sexual boundaries. Clients learn how to establish healthy boundaries for themselves. The group also discusses co-dependent relationship patterns, emotional and sexual grooming, moral development, recognizing a sense of self, and being assertive and honest in relationships.
Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP) Group
A therapeutic group that can feel less threatening and more inviting than traditional talk therapy. EAP allows clients to work on assertiveness, confidence, developing and maintaining relationships, emotional awareness, empathy, impulse control, problem-solving skills, and more.
Psychoeducational group focused on healthy lifestyles by educating clients about nutrition and a healthy diet, exercise and physical fitness, appropriate weight, body image, and other health issues.
Psychoeducational group created to help clients develop self-respect, self confidence, and self-value. This group supports the clients learning about their strengths and gaining an appreciation for their individuality. Positive body image and character development are also topics discussed in the group. During the anger management section of the group, clients learn coping skills to help them manage depression and anger, especially anger that is self-focused and erodes self-image and confidence.
Psychoeducational and process group to help clients achieve healthy skills to cope with past and ongoing/present traumas, develop skills to prevent persistent disturbances associated with various traumas, and skills to avoid future violations/traumas.
This group is designed to allow the clients to provide both support and facilitate appropriate confrontation with each other.
The cognitive processes group helps the clients focus on their cognitive distortions and irrational belief systems.
The DBT Skills Group
Psychoeducational group designed to help clients understand balance in their lives via five core skills: mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotional regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and middle of path thinking.
Psychoeducational and process group helps clients identify behaviors in themselves and others that are intended to hurt someone by harming their relationships with others.
Psychoeducational group focused on interactions with social media. Clients will explore boundaries,relationships, time spent online, the loaded "likes," identity development, and other issues associated with social media use.
Psychoeducational and process group focused on thinking errors, irrational beliefs, limiting beliefs, self-awareness, and understanding how past messages (internal and external messages) affect how they feel and behave.
Transition Process Group
Psychoeducational and process group focused on fears, challenges, and feelings around their transition from Uinta Academy to their home, particularly around rejoining their peer group at home. Through the group process, they learn about thinking errors, irrational beliefs, limiting beliefs, self-awareness, understanding how past messages (internal and external messages) affect how they feel and behave. They also work to learn the skills necessary to transition from Uinta Academy into an appropriate peer group successfully.
Psychoeducational and process group focused on various issues related to contemporary culture and expectations. Clients discuss various relationship issues, particularly those related to feelings of acceptance and rejection. The clients also explore social media, cultural expectations, media literacy, body image, sexual identity, self-image, and identity-related issues.
"Young adults and teens who come to Uinta are pleasantly surprised that they live in a home in a residential neighborhood, that the mountains are right outside their door, and that they get to do all the normal things that teenagers and young adults like to do."