Counseling For Children
Counseling For Children
We are ready to serve you
Emotional difficulties in children are very common. Some moodiness, anxiety and social/school difficulties are expected as kids grow and develop. These challenges may require a change in perspective or learning a new skill. Often you can offer sensitive support and patience and they can work through it. Phrases like, “I can see you are having a really hard time with that.” Or, “I notice you’ve been struggling lately,” go a long way to validating your child’s experience and helping them feel heard. They’ll likely be more willing and able to talk about solutions at that point.
About one in five, or 20 percent, of children struggle with mental health challenges that often manifest through outbursts, withdrawal, or worrisome changes in behavior. In fact, about half of the mental health concerns a person experiences over his or her lifetime manifest by the age of 14. If your child is having a hard time now, counseling can lead to less struggle not only in the present, but also for the rest of his or her life.
The following are some indicators that it is time to seek help.
- Worries most of the time about many things
- Struggles in multiple parts of his or her life – home, school, friends, play
- Feels hopeless or easily overwhelmed
- Challenged by transitions from one activity to another or poor impulse control
- Feels badly about him- or herself or having a poor self-image – is less effective or lacks confidence
- Withdraws from family or friends or doesn’t seem to like activities that were enjoyable previously
- Repetitive self-destructive behaviors such as skin-picking or hair-pulling
- Significant changes in sleeping or eating habits
- Talks about or engages in any type of self-destructive behaviors
- Makes comments, such as, “I wish I weren’t here.” Or “No one would care if I ran away.”
You know your child best. Trust your instincts. You can ask your child, “Do you think this is something we need some help with?”
At Family Essentials you are an important part of your child’s counseling process. The first appointment for children up to age 13 is with just you, the parent(s). We want to hear from the expert on your child – and that’s you! Once we have the opportunity for an unfiltered conversation with you, the counselor will begin meeting with your child. Your child’s counselor will continue to involve you throughout the process. We have a dedicated art room and a sand tray room to support and facilitate your child’s therapeutic process since children are more likely to use right-brained creative means to process and integrate difficult experiences and new information rather than left-brained logical and linear means such as talking.
The Sand Tray
Counseling and parenting help is available for parents too
Just as your child can benefit from the therapeutic process, it is helpful for you to seek your own support both as a person and as a parent. This also models that therapy is something that is useful and acceptable at all ages and that parents need help too.