School age children work individually with me with a focus on stress reducing games and play to allow them the opportunity to develop trust so that they can share concerns and develop behavioral strategies to address problems identified by parents and teachers.
Parents meet with me regularly to identify and resolve parenting patterns and techniques that may be linked to their child's problematic behaviors. In addition, contact with parents becomes invaluable to work with children who have difficulty putting the challenges they face into words.
I believe that the successful treatment of children requires a healthy and supportive working relationship with their parents. In cases where the child is not ready to accept their own need for care, I work directly and solely with parents and other family members so that they can create a therapeutic home environment for the child so that the child is assisted to mature and eventually enter treatment of their own free will.
Adolescence is the time of the greatest change in a child's life. The push towards maturity and independence away from parents is mixed with the regressive pull of safety and dependency back into the arms of the family. This challenge is often complicated by challenges related to executive functioning related to the adolescent's not yet mature brain.
Symptoms of anxiety and depression abound for many teens and are often dealt with through risk-taking, substance abuse, school refusal, and hyper sexuality.
My treatment with adolescents is based on forming a trusting relationship where they can speak openly about these behaviors so that we can work together to understand and resolve their need for them. Whenever possible, parents are also seen to reduce impediments in their relationship with their teens where their best efforts to improve the situation often makes matters worse.