Many young women leave residential treatment feeling prepared to transition into independence, but the fear of failure to launch stays in the back of their mind. Some continue to struggle with visualizing a life beyond their history of depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem. Regardless of progress made in therapy, failure to launch is common after leaving residential treatment without a multidimensional aftercare plan.
Challenges After Residential Treatment
While some girls may have been role models at a previous treatment program, it is harder to continue to apply the same skills in a less restrictive environment, especially if they are exposed to the same stressors when they return home. The first few months after leaving residential treatment, many young adults struggle with not knowing what to do next and feeling unmotivated or unprepared when the unexpected arises. Additionally, if they experience recurring feelings of depression or anxiety, they may feel ashamed that they are still struggling and feel reluctant to reach out for help until they experience an emotional crisis.
Some of the challenges clients may face include:
- Lack of meaningful relationships
- Poor self-care habits
- Limited motivation and purpose in life
- Inability to live independently
- Unhealthy dependence on others
- Difficulty setting and achieving goals
- Failure to complete education
- Problems finding and maintaining employment
- Uncertainty about continuing therapy
Risk Factors for Failure to Launch
Failure to launch syndrome may occur when the mental health issues a young adult struggles with is not accurately diagnosed or fully treated. Many young adults focus on discovering new coping mechanisms to replace addictive behaviors in residential treatment, but may not address the underlying issues that contributed to them turning to those behaviors in the first place. Incomplete treatment that fails to holistically provide young adults with the insight and skills to move forward also puts them at increased risk of falling back into old patterns.
Because each person is unique, it is vital that one’s treatment plan allows them to process their experiences and emotions in ways that are meaningful and relevant to them. While one particular therapeutic modality may be standard for a particular type of disorder, students may need a modified, individualized approach to fully engage in the therapeutic process and make lasting progress towards stability and wellness.
The ultimate goal of transitional living programs is to help young adults feel prepared to successfully live on their own. This may involve:
- Developing healthier coping skills and self-care practices
- Practicing independent living skills, like meal planning and cooking, cleaning, money management
- Educational and Vocational Support to help young adults begin to work towards their academic and career goals
- Parent Coaching to help families learn how to effectively support their child both during and after treatment while allowing room for independence
Launching into independence takes time, especially after residential treatment. Rushing into adult responsibilities without the skills to support oneself increases one’s risk of failure to launch. If you are concerned that your daughter may need additional support after residential treatment, Journey East can help.
Journey Home East Can Help
Journey Home East is a transitional living program for young women ages 16-21. This program focuses on helping women transition from long-term treatment to the real world. While they are at our program, we help build confidence in young adults. The idea is to ween them off support systems of being in programs for many years and hone in on functional living skills they need to be independent. Journey Home East helps with scheduling for school, classes, work, internships. This program also provides health coaching, relationship building, dating safety and personal safety tips. Students have the opportunity to equip themselves with the skills they need to lead healthy and successful lives post-treatment. We can help your family today!
Contact us at 855-290-9684 to learn more about our transitional living program.