Is Your Child Experiencing Emotional Challenges Or Setbacks?
Do you have a child ages 3 to 12 who could benefit from the help of a therapist? Have you noticed a recent change in your child’s mood or behavior? Or are you concerned that your child is experiencing social or academic setbacks at school?
You may worry that your child is exhibiting symptoms of anxiety and/or depression. Perhaps they are easily agitated or emotionally withdrawn. It could be that an inability to focus or pay attention has created problems at home or school. Or maybe your child has become more defiant than usual.
In instances of unresolved trauma, children have trouble forming healthy attachments with parents and caregivers. You may be aware of neglect or abuse in your child’s life, or an instance of medical trauma or separation at birth may have complicated their ability to form strong connections. It could be that your child has been diagnosed with an attachment disorder, a mental health condition, or ADHD.
Alternatively, there may be changes taking place in your world as a parent that have adversely impacted your child. Maybe you’re in the midst of a divorce, separation, or blending of families, and you feel that your child needs the consistent support of a therapist to help them adjust. Or you may be looking for guidance as you parent your child through a difficult situation.
When children struggle emotionally, it can create tension in your relationship and cause you to doubt your abilities as a parent. But in counseling, you and your child both will be given an opportunity to explore, process, and learn to cope with life’s challenges.
Despite Their Young Age, Children Are Vulnerable To Life’s Trials And Tribulations
Though we typically feel the need to shield our children from pain, the truth is that children face many of the same challenges that adults do. Not only are symptoms of anxiety, bullying, and the ramifications of divorce/separation common obstacles that children encounter, but they’re also subjected to the impacts of grief and loss, perfectionism, and unresolved trauma.
Moreover, as parents, we may have unintentionally contributed to our children’s anguish. For example, if we struggle to manage our anxieties or self-criticism, it’s possible that our children have learned (or will learn) maladaptive behaviors and damaging patterns from us.
Unfortunately, many of us don’t know where to look when it comes to finding mental health resources for our children. And it can be difficult to acknowledge that we may be contributing to our child’s struggles, despite having the best of intentions for their healthy growth and development.
The therapists here at Insight Counseling Center are trained in the complicated aspects of child development and can help your family reach renewed understanding and harmony.
Counseling Gives Your Child The Space To Explore, Process, And Tackle Life’s Challenges
As you begin to consider therapy for your child, it’s important to keep in mind that though they may be emotionally aware and highly verbal, it takes a long time for children’s brains to get to a place where they can attach words to their emotions. For this reason, child-centered play therapy is especially useful in helping children to process their thoughts and feelings in a nonverbal way.
Play therapy certainly looks different depending on the age and presenting issues of each child, which is why we seek to tailor the counseling process to meet the needs of your family. Beginning with a first session that will only involve the parent, caregiver, or guardian (and not the child), your therapist will complete an intake and address any concerns you have about therapy.
Using elements of child-centered play, sand tray, and expressive arts therapies, your child’s clinician will encourage your child to explore, navigate, and process their experiences through imagination and play. And because such approaches are often engineered for children specifically, they allow your child to feel seen, better understood, and safe to open up about their emotions.
As your child gradually develops the skills to communicate their feelings, their counselor will encourage and support them in facing their challenges through play as strategies for problem-solving, coping, and emotional regulation are developed. When children are given the option to play out or express different solutions to problems, they’ll be better prepared to translate these skills outside of the therapeutic context.
At Insight Counseling Center, we have seen the value of play therapy, expressive arts, and sand tray therapy in helping children to develop essential life skills. With the guidance of their counselor, your child can learn to calm themselves and build the confidence to effectively communicate their needs, ultimately improving their connection to you and the world around them.
By committing to child counseling, you are preparing your child to face the future with a sense of empowerment and self-assurance so that they can feel capable to navigate all of life’s challenges.
Maybe you’re contemplating having your child see a counselor, but you still have questions…
Between the demands of my life as a parent and my child’s demands at school, we don’t have time for counseling.
If your child is struggling at home or at school, it’s important that they receive the support they need. Because counseling allows children to develop coping skills, emotional regulation techniques, and interpersonal communication, we encourage you to consider this as a long-term investment that will benefit your child for life. If time remains a concern, please note that we offer online therapy sessions to make counseling as easy and accessible as possible.
My child is too young/nonverbal—can counseling still help?
Child-centered play therapy (and other forms of therapy used for children) have been proven to be highly effective for kids as young as three. Even if your child is nonverbal or has a limited vocabulary, counseling can help them to explore and understand their emotions in a nonverbal way.
I’d like to be included in all of my child’s therapy sessions.
At Insight Counseling Center, we are invested in providing the best care possible to your child and your family. Therefore, we will work closely with you as the parent to establish an effective treatment plan. That being said, we may determine based on your child’s intake that one-on-one counseling sessions are the best course of action. If, together, we decide that your child will be seen independently, we promise to keep you updated on your child’s progress and resources that may be helpful to you as a parent. All parent participation in counseling is determined on a case-by-case basis, and we will work to ensure that you feel confident in the process.
Prepare Your Child To Face Life With Joy And Confidence
If your child is exhibiting symptoms of depression, anxiety, or emotional distress, therapy at Insight Counseling Center can help them to process their experiences and solve problems. To learn more about how we can help or to schedule an appointment, please visit our contact page