Child and Adolescents Therapy is similar to therapy for adults as children and adolescents can participate in and benefit from counseling. Counseling can help children and adolescents learn how to identify causes of their distress, develop their skills in asking for help and expressing emotions, and improve their problem-solving abilities.
Our approach to child/adolescent therapy is holistic and strength-based. We seek to identify and develop strength and growth areas, while reducing distress and increasing coping skills.
Children, just like adults, experience stress. Common stressors for children include school and family issues. School stressors may include excessive or difficult homework, test anxiety, peer pressure, bullying, and learning difficulties. Family issues may include parental arguing, divorce, moving homes, new sibling, major illness, death, loss, and transitions.
If you notice a change in your child’s behavior (e.g., inattention, arguing, withdrawing) or emotions (e.g. depressed, angry, worried, stress) and think they may need help, child/adolescent therapy may be a good resource.
Specific therapy goals are customized to meet the needs of the child and their family. The overall goal of our child and adolescent therapy program is to alleviate symptoms of distress; improve the child’s social and emotional resources; increase their use of effective communication skills; and strengthen family, community, and peer relationships.
We strive to create an environment where a child/adolescent feels safe and protected from real or perceived threats to their sense of control. We then work collaboratively with the child/adolescent to identify their areas of distress, examine and express their feelings by expanding their emotional vocabulary, and develop positive ways to cope and thrive in their environments.
Balance is a structural family therapy environment. This means that we always include families into sessions with children. Family members that we may include (e.g., parents, grandparents, siblings), teachers, and caregivers. The amount of time and frequency of involvement of others is unique to the child/adolescent and family’s situation. We understand that many parents have questions about their child/adolescent’s therapeutic process and progress. Therefore, we often reserve part of every session to touch base with parents/caregivers to answer questions and provide updates, as appropriate.