I have completed a Master’s level training in integrative child psychotherapy at the Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education. This training included a two-year infant observation.
As an integrative child and adolescent psychotherapist I draw upon a range of theoretical frameworks to inform my work. These include psychodynamic, attachment-focussed, developmental and cognitive models. I support this work with the growing body of work within the field of neurobiology. My work is relationship-based and I make links with children and young people through the use of play, art and talking.
I work with very young children from the age of about four. I can work with younger children as part of a family unit.
For children, I meet first with parents/carers to get a better understanding of the difficulties currently being experienced and to gather some background information. It is also an opportunity to discuss how I might work with your child and for you to find out more about me. The most effective therapy requires parents and carers to be actively involved in treatment. This means I will often suggest that parents/carers attend sessions or part of sessions with their child or that they come to separate sessions. This type of whole family approach is more likely to result in a successful outcome.
WHAT HAPPENS IN A THERAPY SESSION?
Typically children struggle to put words to their feelings or to make sense of the issues that underlie them. Their communication often comes in the form of behaviour. It is often this behaviour that prompts parents or carers to seek help. These symptomatic behaviours are very varied but include such things as aggressive or destructive behaviours, withdrawing, bed-wetting and difficulty with separating. It is often very distressing for parents and carers to see their child struggling in these ways.
In therapy a child can express themselves through play and creative activities as well as talking. With the help of the parents and carers I can start to build a picture of what is troubling your child and, as a result, help them put words to their feelings and make sense of why they feel the way they do.
This helps children to feel happier and more confident in their everyday life.