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Growing up takes time and practice and the process is not always a smooth road. Many times our children and teenagers become worried and struggle with demands at home and at school. Often, the bumps in the road are transitory and families find a way to help their kids negotiate the challenges of getting older.
Sometimes, however, children and families need extra help to turn obstacles into opportunities
for growth. When a child has a challenging temperament or learning differences, or when there is a
significant stress in the family such as a death or divorce, psychotherapy can be an important intervention to help the child get back on developmental track. Click here for a list of signs that can be a good first step in deciding whether your child needs professional help.
Therapy can go well beyond addressing topical challenges. It can provide an opportunity for children to develop emotional and relational skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives. For parents it is a chance to expand their parenting capacity and rework patterns from their own childhood.
If you are concerned about your child or adolescent we will meet to discuss the situation. This gives you the chance to meet me in person to assess whether you believe I will be a good fit for your child. It also allows us to begin to develop a sense of trust, mutual cooperation and hopefulness. We will determine the approach that makes most sense for your child and for your family. Sometimes we will decide that I can be of most help by talking with you, the parents (and sometimes caregivers) about how to help your child. Other times we will conclude that a period of play therapy and developmentally appropriate talk therapy makes the most sense to help your child feel better about him or herself and to resume a healthy maturational process.
“Play is the exultation of the possible.” ~ Martin Buber
Children and adolescents seldom march into therapy wanting to discuss their problems. With young children, play offers a language with which to express their worries and conflicts. For adolescents, a combination of play and talk therapy can provide the safe space from which to work through their concerns. The treatment of children often moves very quickly compared to adult treatment. Children, especially young children, often make quick use of treatment to get their worries out on the table and to begin to tackle them. We will all work together to help your child dissolve the roadblocks that are hindering ordinary development so that he or she can get on with the jobs and joys of childhood.
Child and Adolescent Areas of Treatment
I have successfully worked with children and teenagers on a range of issues including:
- Depression, isolation and loneliness
- Anxiety, worries and stress
- Trauma, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Gender and sexuality struggles and questions
- Parental divorce, dissolution or separation
- Blended family adjustment
- Illness, death and bereavement
- ADHD and ADD
- Conduct difficulties, impulse control and anger issues
- Asperger’s Disorder
If you would like to learn more about my approach to child and adolescent therapy or to schedule an introductory session please call me at (510) 686-3773 or email at email@example.com.