Sage Education Group

Therapeutic Resources

“…brevity can never, in the nature of things, do justice to all the facts of a complex situation….
But life is short and information endless: nobody has time for everything.”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World Revisited.


  • Faber, Adele and Mazlish, Elaine (2005). How to Talk So Teens Will Listen and Listen So Teens Will Talk. New York: Harper Collins. For explanation and demonstration of active empathic listening and responding, this is excellent. It offers the essential content of the authors’ original book, How to Talk so Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk, adapted for communication with adolescents. And it has pictures.
  • Ferguson, Gary (1999). Shouting at the Sky: Troubled Teens and the Promise of the Wild. New York: St. Martin's. An older, but still relevant and useful description of what happens in a therapeutic wilderness program.
  • McKinnon, John A. (2010). To Change a Mind: Parenting to Promote Maturity in Teenagers. New York: Lantern Books. From a psychiatrist with decades of experience working with adolescents, this is a thoughtful and straightforward description of the two most basic needs of children and how to meet them.
  • Pozatek, Krissy (2011). The Parallel Process; Growing Alongside Your Adolescent or Young Adult Child in Treatment. New York: Lantern Books. This is practical and wise guidance for any parent who truly wants to be a part of a son’s or daughter’s treatment. A former wilderness therapist, Pozatek writes with experience and empathy about the work needed from both parent and child if families are to heal and grow.
  • Proschaska, J.O., Norcross, J.C. and Dilemente, C.C. (1994). Changing for Good: The Revolutionary Program that Explains the Six Stages of Change and Teaches You How to Free Yourself from Bad Habits. Treatment—whether 45 minutes a week in a therapist’s office, 8 weeks in wilderness, 10 months in an RTC—is about change. These researchers know as much as anyone about the process of change, and they describe it well. Changing for Good is another good volume by the same authors.
  • Walsh, David (2004). Why Do They Act That Way? A Survival Guide to the Adolescent Brain for You and Your Teen. New York: Free Press. This is a cogent, readable, sometimes humorous description of the many physiological changes that affect adolescent development. It may help to normalize some of what you’re seeing in your son or daughter.



For parents interested in influences that can make it difficult to implement the best practices, the following are illuminating:

  • Levine, Madeline. The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids. (2006).
  • Mogul, Wendy. The Blessing of a Skinned Knee. (2001).
  • Pipher, Mary. The Shelter of Each Other: Rebuilding Our Families. (2008).

Regarding therapeutic options, the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP) offers useful information for parents and professionals, including a directory of member programs. NATSAP also publishes a journal that includes research on therapeutic programs. Please see