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Meet Mariah and the Teen Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Group

Tillamook Family Counseling Center is proud to offer a Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) group for local teens led by behavioral health clinician, Mariah Myton. The DBT group aims to destigmatize emotions, teaching teens to recognize the underlying complexities beneath their reactions, particularly focusing on misunderstood emotions like anger, grief, and shame. Strategies for emotional regulation, distress tolerance, mindfulness, and interpersonal effectiveness are explored.

Mariah brings both personal insight and professional expertise. “I understand what it feels like to live with big emotions,” shares Mariah. “I see teenagers making a lot of noise, needing someone to help articulate what they’re going through.” For teens struggling to understand and express intense emotions, this group provides a judgment-free space to process feelings and experiences. 

DBT Approach and Curriculum

Drawing from evidence-based modalities, DBT integrates Eastern and Western philosophies, ensuring a holistic approach to emotional wellness. The program leverages resources like SAMHSA’s anger management workbook and incorporates mindfulness practices such as breathing exercises. The group environment helps teens realize they are not alone in their struggles.

One activity Mariah described is where members anonymously share their biggest fear, and recognize many of them are shared. As Mariah explains, “Peer support gives validation, allowing teens to feel seen, heard, and understood.” Gradually, those tough exteriors fade away in a group setting. “I love watching the group bond, how they open up and become more vulnerable. There is so much power in vulnerability, it is a strength.” 

Mariah’s Inspiration and Personal Journey

Mariah’s inspiration to serve teens comes from a childhood upbringing with family addiction and adversity. Witnessing her parents’ resilience in overcoming addiction inspired her to bring greater awareness and education to the field. “Because of my experience with addiction in my family, I always felt like addiction was misunderstood. Many people think it is a choice, but it’s not. Overcoming addiction means also overcoming painful experiences, including intergenerational traumas.” 

As a teen mother, Mariah shifted her focus to family and wellness, eventually embarking on a career path in mental health. Living on the reservation in Montana, along with her diverse wellness background; training in psychology, clinical rehabilitation and mental health counseling, as well as hands-on therapy and years of community mental health experience feed into her current role as a DBT facilitator, driven by a desire to empower teens to find their voices while coping with life’s challenges.

DBT Group Referrals

The Teen DBT group welcomes referrals from those receiving TFCC’s mental health services, ensuring active client engagement and collaboration with behavioral health clinicians and families. Mariah emphasizes the importance of understanding each teen’s unique needs and struggles, fostering a tailored approach to therapy. Co-facilitators including Kiera Doerr and Maria Bateman contribute to the group’s success, enhancing the quality of care provided to Tillamook’s youth. To learn more about the group, speak to your counselor at TFCC.