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How Do I Talk to Parents about Needing Treatment?

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From a 16 year old in the U.S.: I have been taking tests over the past year and am certain that I have OCD. I would like to get treatment and get help because it is getting harder to go through it alone. I have not brought this up to my parents and I need help in figuring out how to bring it up. I would greatly appreciate any help or advice.

How Do I Talk to Parents about Needing Treatment?

Answered by on -


I suggest you ask your parents to take you for an evaluation, not for treatment. Although self-tests can provide some information, they are not a means for getting a diagnosis. You need a mental health counselor for that. If your concerns are verified, the therapist will make treatment recommendations to you and your parents.

As for talking with your parents: A diagnosis requires that the symptoms are interfering with your social, academic and daily functioning. If the symptoms are getting in your way, talk to your parents about that. For example, if you are engaging in checking and ordering behaviors so much that you can’t get your homework done, that’s a problem parents can understand and would want to help you solve.

Another option is to talk to your school guidance counselor and ask for support in talking to your parents.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

How Do I Talk to Parents about Needing Treatment?

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). How Do I Talk to Parents about Needing Treatment?. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 20, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.