Therapy for Children and Young People
As well as providing therapy for adults, I also offer therapy for children and young people (from age 5 / Primary School Year 1).
Does my child need therapy?
The reasons for wanting to access therapy for a child or young person can be a wide and varied as for adults.
Significant life events — such as the death of a family member, friend, or pet; divorce or a move; abuse; trauma; a parent leaving on military deployment; or a major illness in the family — can cause stress that might lead to problems with behavior, mood, sleep, appetite, and academic or social functioning.
In some cases, it’s not as clear what’s caused a child to suddenly seem withdrawn, worried, stressed, sulky, or tearful. But if you feel your child might have an emotional or behavioral problem or needs help coping with a difficult life event, get in touch and discuss your concerns.
Examples of the issues for children and young people include:
- developmental delay in speech, language, or toilet training
- learning or attention problems (such as ADHD)
- behavioral problems
- excessive anger
- acting out
- eating disorders
- a significant drop in grades or school perfomance
- episodes of sadness, tearfulness, or depression
- social withdrawal or isolation
- being the victim of bullying or bullying other children
- decreased interest in previously enjoyed activities
- overly aggressive behavior (such as biting, kicking, or hitting)
- insomnia or increased sleepiness
- excessive school absenteeism or tardiness
- mood swings (e.g. happy one minute, upset the next)
- development of or an increase in physical complaints (such as headache, stomachache, or not feeling well) which are not explained by physical illness or injury
- management of a serious, acute, or chronic illness
- signs of alcohol, drug, or other substance use (such as solvents or prescription drug abuse)
- problems with transitions
- following separation or divorce
- moving house
- changing schools
- bereavement issues
- therapy following sexual, physical, or emotional abuse or other traumatic events
How does it work?
- Contact me to discuss your concerns
- If it seems that therapy might be useful, we will arrange an initial assessment session
- For children under 13, the initial assessment will include the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the child
- For children and young people over 13, the initial assessment could be with the child or young person on their own
- Therapy with children and young people is a confidential process, as with adults
- It is natural that parents may be concerned about their child, and want to know what is happening in therapy sessions
- Regular updates will allow parents and guardians to understand the themes of the work
- Detailed accounts of what has been discussed or explored in sessions will not usually be shared, unless either the child has requested this, or there is a safeguarding or wellbeing imperative to do so
- In general, therapy with younger children tends to be more expressive, creative, and imaginative, using play to explore feelings
- As children get older, this tends to move towards more talking based therapy
- Therapy with children and young people is an individual process, and so as with adults, their experience of therapy will be unique