Unlike most adults, children typically do no show that they are hurting by talking about their distress. More likely, you will realize your child is being disrupted by ongoing physical complains, sleep or eating difficulties, extreme shyness, repeated worries and fears or she may become withdrawn, distracted, uncooperative or aggressive at home and/or school. For parents, sometimes it is hard to know if your child is just going through a normal childhood milestone or if you have reasons to seek professional help. Usually, when those issues became pervasive, it may be a sign that your child needs help. If you are unsure about what is going on with your child, consulting a professional may help you gain a different perspective and understand the situation better.
Parents usually wonder about what really happens inside the therapist's room. What about all the toys and games? How come when inquired kids who come to therapy say that they just 'played'?
Well, play is the primary language of childhood and one of our most important tools in child psychotherapy. During sessions with a therapist, your child will use the toys and games to express her concerns and also explore ways to deal with and manage them. In you child's view, she is only playing (and hopefully also enjoying that). From the therapist perspective, your child's play is extremely symbolic and reveals her emotional experience and how she is coping and dealing with stress. By engaging your child in a playful way, I can help her navigate those uncertainties and understand better her underlying conflicts and feelings that may be impacting her mood and behavior. During this process, your child will gain a deeper understanding of herself, which will diminish her symptoms and greatly improve her family and peer relationships as well as her learning and social ability.
As I work with your child, I will also help you to develop more tools to navigate the troubling moments of parenthood while strengthening your relationship with your child and improving your parenting skills.
I work with children who are dealing with:
- separation issues;
- grief and sadness;
- cultural struggles, and
- behavior and school problems.
First Step for Parents
Many parents feel they should be able to figure out what is bothering their toddler or child and help them with their problems without consulting with a professional. It may feel embarrassing, shameful or humiliating asking for help. These feelings are normal and very common - parenthood is infused with vulnerabilities, uncertainty and doubts.
Yet, all the parents I worked with found relieving and reassuring to have the opportunity to talk about their children and their parenting in way to gain further knowledge about their children's emotional life. I deeply respect and appreciate the complexities that parenting presents and aim to work as closely with you as with your child. Hopefully, during your child's psychotherapy you will also gain a better understanding of your interaction with her in order to feel more fulfilled as a parent. In our consultations, we will discuss any concerns you may have about your child and her treatment as well as explore in depth your relationship with her. You will be able to learn a lot about your child and also about yourself as a parent.
Beyond child therapy, I also offer infant-parent sessions, parenting consultations and parenting workshops. If you are uncertain about what kind of help you may need, please do not hesitate in contacting me. I will listen carefully to your worries and offer ideas on how to better approach with your situation.
No child is too young to be listened to
No parent is failing because needing help
Recommended Readings for Parents
Becoming the Parent You Want to Be - A Sourcebook of Strategies for the First Five Years
by Laura Davis and Janis Keyser
Between Parent and Child
by Dr. Haim G. Ginott
Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline
by Becky Bailey
Parenting from the Inside Out
by Daniel Siegel and Mary Hartzel
The Birth of an Adoptive, Foster, or Stepmother: Beyond Mothering and Attachments
by Dr. Barbara Waterman
Emotional Muscle: Strong Parents, Strong Children
by Kelly Kerry Novick and Jack Novick
by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka
by Adele Farber and Elaine Mazlish