- Ask me what options I think there are
- Talk with me about what options you think I have. This may include deciding to do nothing
- Explore what each option entails
- Explore what I have already tried, what has and hasn’t worked, and whether I want to revisit these again
- Remember to be open to discussing all options, even if you may not be able to support me with these – I need to explore them all to understand what will and won’t work for me and why
Ensure I understand the options that are available to me
- Talk with me about the decision and how much say I have
- Ensure I understand the options that are available to me
- Talk with me about the pros and cons of the options available
- Discuss my views, values and preferences
- Explain your views
- Discuss if I feel able to do this
- Discuss what are we going to do and how we are going to do it
To help young people understand and think through the different options, we often sit and draw out a mind map on the whiteboard or on paper. It just helps them (and me) to hold everything in mind and weigh things up. There can be so much for them to take in. We can then add on pros and cons, to see which option might feel best.
I always make sure we list all of the options at first, even the ones I may not be able to support the young person with. It's important that we can think together about why I can't support that option so it doesn't just seem like I'm saying no. We talk about why they think that's an option, what they hoped it would give them and then use this to think of something else that we could do together.
Mental health nurse
It's important to be explicit with young people that choosing not to do something is also an option and to think through what the implications of doing nothing would be. This shows they have real choice and influence and gives them space to really think about what they do or don't want to do.
A lot of young people aren’t used to being involved in decision-making, so it is important that you support us with this. If we haven’t had any practice, being given choice can be scary and overwhelming. Make sure you talk about the pros/cons and what each option involves. It is helpful for us to hear everyone’s views- ours, yours, and our parents.
Making a decision can feel very final. The finality can make the situations harder for us. Make sure we know that we can revisit our choices and change our minds.
I might see something as an option that the professional doesn’t think is an option. If we disagree, it would be helpful to know why the doctor doesn’t think something is an option.
When I worry about thingsWhen I Worry About Things is a collection of animated films that use...
Team of LifeThe Team of Life is a narrative methodology which uses sporting metaphors to...
I’ve got this letter…This film from Oxleas CAMHS is for children and young people who have...
Option gridsOption Grids have a range of decision aids for all sorts of health conditions,...
CAMHS – What’s it all about?Great video about what coming to CAMHS is like, makes the...
Jargon BusterIreland Mental health Commission created this jargon buster for young people using mental...
Headspace Toolkit – A guide for Mental Health inpatientsIreland Mental Health Commission created this guide to the rights of mental health...
Antipsychotic Medication Option GridThe Dartmouth Institute’s Option Grids are a great resource to help with understanding the...
ADHD Treatment CardsCincinnati Hospital’s ‘parent cards’ can help to thing through the options for ADHD treatment....
Bright IdeasThe young people from Bristol and South Gloucestershire CAMHS forum created this poster to...
Next Step CardsDesigned with both young people and mental health practitioners, the resource is made up...
HeadMedsHeadMeds gives young people in the United Kingdom general information about medication. HeadMeds does not give you medical advice....
Ottawa Personal Decision GuidesDeveloped by the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, the Ottawa Personal Decision Guide (OPDG) and...
CAMHS ReadyDeveloped by North Staffordshire CAMHS, CAMHS Ready is a tool for young people and...
Autism Decision Aid for MedicationMany families of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are faced with the option...
Goals and Goal Based Outcomes (GBO’s) Booklet: 3rd EdA booklet by Duncan Law and Jenna Jacob (Child Outcome Research Consortium) outlining useful...
My CAMHS ChoicesHave you been referred to CAMHS or are you interested in finding out about...