Frequently Asked Questions
What will happen if my young person sees someone at Sorted?
Your young person will be offered an appointment to see a Sorted worker where and when they feel comfortable. This could be at your home, at school or at their course for example. The initial meeting and everything that happens afterwards is very much led by your young person as they have rights in engaging with services. This is also important to give the best chance for your young person to engage well with our service and have the best opportunity to get something out of this engagement.
Initially the Sorted worker will look to complete an Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) assessment with your young person. This is an interactive process and most often takes place during 2-3 sessions. The purpose of the assessment is to then inform what goals might be agreed to with your young person for work to be done with their Sorted worker. After the assessment, goals will be agreed to between your young person and their Sorted worker and work done to try and achieve these goals.
These goals will be continually reviewed and length of time this work will take will be dependent on a number of things such as the motivation of your young person to engage with their Sorted worker and what the goals are that they are trying to achieve.
Will I know what work is being done with my young person when they see their Sorted worker?
It is always our goal to involve family as much as possible when working with a young person and for this to be throughout the process- from assessment, goal setting and through to transition out of service. However, confidentiality is very important to Sorted and for us to have any chance of working effectively with young people we have to take this seriously. This is explained very clearly with your young person at their first appointment with their Sorter worker. An information sharing plan is agreed at the start of working with your young person so depending on this, information will be shared with family and others accordingly. The limits to confidentiality are around issues of risk and if there is risk of serious harm (e.g. to your young person from themselves or others, or from your young person to others) then you will be informed immediately. Even if your young person does not want their Sorted worker to share information with others regarding what they discuss, you are still able to talk with their Sorted worker about the process they are working through, without getting into the content of what is discussed.
Can Sorted make my young person get off this stuff or send them somewhere so they can?
In Short- No. Sorted has no legislative power to make a young person go anywhere for treatment for their substance use. Everything we do is by negotiation and collaboration with your young person, making use of our skills and knowledge as Youth AOD workers and our hopefully positive engagement with your young person. Evidence tells us that we have to tailor the work we do with your young person according to where they are at in their thinking about their substance use. We call this the Cycle of Change and one of the first things your young person’s Sorted worker will be doing will be assessing where your young person is at in this cycle and pitching the work they do accordingly. Why? Because we know this is what has the best chance of bringing about positive change. See Cycle of Change Explained.
If your young person is motivated to make changes and thinks doing so in the community will be difficult we can support them to attend a Youth AOD Residential Service for a period of time. There are a couple of options for these services:
Why would Sorted be looking to stop work with my young person even though they are still using?
There can be lots of different reasons for this but deciding when to end work is normally a collaborative process between your young person and their Sorted worker. You will be involved in this collaborative decision depending on consent. Reasons work may stop can be due to the thinking of your young person about their substance use and their stage in the Cycle of Change (See Cycle of Change Explained). If there has been no shift in where they are in their thinking then it is important that continued engagement with Sorted does not continue unnecessarily. It is of the upmost importance that any engagement with Sorted is a positive experience for your young person so that even if they are not ready to make changes now, they will be more likely to seek support in the future when they start thinking about change. This will inform when your Sorted worker finishes with your young person as will other factors such as whether your young person has achieved goals they had set for their work with Sorted or whether they have further goals they want to achieve for example.
My young person says their use helps them with difficult thoughts and feelings, is this helpful?
In short- No. Your young person’s Sorted worker might call this Co-existing Problems (CEP) which is mental health problems alongside of AOD problems. The relationship between mental health and substance use is complex but put simply there are two ways to think of this:
- Substance use which has led to mental health problems. E.g. A drug induced psychosis or the negative cycle of withdrawal issues/cravings leading to mood problems (anger, mood swings). In this situation there were little or no symptoms of any mental health problems prior to substance use and so the young person’s substance use has greatly contributed to the mental health problems they are experiencing. NOT helpful.
- Mental Health problems that have led to substance use problems. E.g. feeling depressed or anxious and so smoking cannabis to relax and feel good. Young people will quite often use these kinds of reasons to justify their use- e.g. “it calms me down”, “it helps me sleep” or “it helps me feel happy”. Unfortunately using substances as a way of coping with these things does not solve the problem, it masks it for as long your young person is under the influence. This then increases the risk that they go back to the substance again and again to cope. This can lead to addiction. It also means that the substance your young person is suggesting is the solution to their problem actually becomes part of the problem, e.g. if they smoke cannabis to calm down, the more you smoke cannabis the more agitated and frustrated you get when you don’t have it. NOT helpful.
Call us direct on 07 557 5052 or 0800 BAYSORT (0800 229 7678)
Or email email@example.com
Call us on 07 308 8803 Monday - Friday, 8am - 5pm or 0800 486 947
(Crisis - After Hours) 0800 774 545
Or email firstname.lastname@example.org
March 23, 2017