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YouthSTAR

A LifeStar program designed specifically for teens
with pornography or sexual addictions.

In the world we live in today, pornography is readily available and young people are exposed to it in record numbers. It is estimated that before age 18, 90% of boys and 60% of girls are exposed to pornography. As we learn more about how pornography affects the brain, it has become evident that pornography acts much like a drug and is highly addictive. Young people who excessively use pornography may experience deep feelings of shame, depression, and a negative self-image; they may find themselves unable to stop despite the consequences. 

If you have discovered that your teenager has been exposed to pornography or is making habitual unhealthy sexual choices, YouthSTAR offers help and hope. Our program is designed to help young people heal from addictions to pornography, compulsive masturbation, and other compulsive sexual behaviors. In YouthSTAR, trained therapists guide adolescents through classes, workbooks, and therapy experiences that are focused on healing sexually addictive behavior and dealing with the underlying causes. We also provide a parent education component, teaching parents how they can best support their teenager throughout the program and the rest of their life. 

 
 
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The Problem

“Never before in the history of telecommunications media in the United States has so much indecent material been so easily accessible by so many minors in so many American homes with so few restrictions.”

— U.S Department of Justice

 

The Treatment Process

The program is divided into the following phases:

Phase I: Getting Started
Phase II: Recovery Groups

PHASE I: GETTING STARTED

What is this? - Phase 1 is the educational piece of the recovery process. This workshop-style is in a classroom setting, to help both parents and teenagers (participants) understand the underlying causes of addiction. The basic structure is established for individuals for long-term, life-changing recovery.

When clients are well-informed about the underlying issues that influence unhealthy behaviors, they become empowered to take a more proactive approach to recovery and life. We find that involving both the teen and the parent/s in this process provides a collaborative approach toward healthy recovery.

Who attends? - Both the participant and parent/s. Both will engage in the learning process together and will be provided with program structure, basic tools to begin working toward recovery. *

For how long? - 1 hour, once a week for 4 weeks.

What should I expect? - There is minimal participation needed in this part of the process. Expect to tell the group your first name, and participate/ask questions as you feel comfortable.

We know that this is an already difficult decision to participate in a group like this, and emotions will be close to the surface for most, yet deep and closely guarded by others. This is a safe environment to share your experience to begin on the road to a long-lasting recovery!

Prerequisites - All participants are screened and assessed by a trained and licensed LifeStar Therapist before attending the program.


PHASE II: RECOVERY GROUPS

What is this? - Phase II shifts from an educational approach, to a “working recovery” approach. Participants will complete tasks and assignments, and hold one another accountable. These tools and principles lay the groundwork required for lasting recovery. The workbooks in Phase II focus on providing a deeper look at denial, the addiction cycle, fantasies and objectification, relapse prevention, and healthy living.

Who Attends? - Just the participant. *

For how long? - 1-hour group session, once per week for 6 months.

What’s the format? - Small group workshop and educational environment with group sizes of 3 to 10 people. The participants are combined in gender-specific addict groups. This is where participants build close connections and relationships to one another for long-term support and recovery.

What should I expect? - Deeper, and more personal work is done in this phase for all participants. By learning mindfulness tools, building coping skills, through completing exercises and workbooks, participants get to the root of their addiction, become accountable for their actions and sobriety, and form a close-knit support group with the other group members.

Prerequisites - Participants are required to attend and complete Phase I before participating in Phase II.

* Various LifeStar staff members and interns may participate from time to time for training purposes, but are held to strict confidentiality guidelines.