Helping Parents and Young Kids Heal
This approach is for children birth to age 6 and their families to recover and heal from stressful and traumatic events. Child-Parent Psychotherapy:
- Supports family strengths and relationships
- Helps families heal and grow after stressful experiences
- Respects family and cultural values
Confidential Family Services That Reconnects Families
Early stressful events in young kids’ lives can impact families. Child-Parent Therapy helps families reconnect, heal, and grow in loving, caring ways after stressful events. We treat the child together with their caregiver with an emphasis on addressing trauma, building healthy attachment, and returning children to a healthy developmental trajectory. Child-Parent Therapy will help you and your child connect to resources, each other and begin to heal after stressful events.
What to Expect
We work together in three stages:
- Getting to Know the Child and Family
We spend time meeting alone with parents/caregivers to understand the family’s needs and challenges, strengths and values, and history and experiences. If needed, we connect families to additional resources and services. We make an individualized plan together for how we can help your family.
- Addressing Your Families’ Needs
We usually meet once a week with the parent/caregiver and child. If old enough, we first help children understand who we are, why they are coming, and what we will do together. We often use toys because young children show feelings and thoughts through play. We may meet alone as adults. We help parents/caregivers and children to: understand each other, talk and play about difficult experiences, respond to difficult feelings and behaviors, and create a family story that leads to healing.
- Wrapping Up and Planning for the Future
We celebrate changes families have made. We talk about how parents/caregivers made changes happen. We consider how endings and goodbyes may bring up different feelings. We talk about what will be needed in the future.
How do you know if you should participate in Child-Parent Therapy?
Our access clinician will determine whether Child-Parent Therapy is the right therapy approach for your family. Yet, Child-Parent Therapy may help when:
- Children have been through scary or painful events such as the loss of a loved person, separation, serious medical procedures, abuse, or violence at home or in the community.
- The child shows difficult behaviors
- Children have a change in placement or caregivers
- Family members have physical health or mental health difficulties
- Caregivers would like help with parenting and improving parent-child relationships
Does Child-Parent Therapy Make a Difference?
"In time we started to see…it’s ok we can trust people, to be honest in therapy, to talk about bad things that happen, to feel…our sparkle inside that we thought we lost; with help, we are finding out just how bright our sparkle really is."
– Anonymous Caregiver.
Yes, it shows improvements in children’s mood, problem behaviors, learning, trauma symptoms, and biological stress response. It also shows improvements in parents’/caregivers’ mood, parenting stress, trauma symptoms, and partner relationship. And finally, it shows improvements in parent-child relationship quality. It works!