WHY DO CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE NEED COUNSELLING/THERAPY?
Growing up can raise all sorts of difficulties, especially in a world that is adapting and changing. Research shows that the mental health of children and young people can be affected by a number of factors including congenital, environmental and family.
As a result of this children, young people and their families can be faced with a wide range of difficulties which, if unresolved, can lead to serious, long term emotional, behavioural and developmental problems. Early intervention has been proven to prevent long term mental health problems.
We all experience occasions when we do not want to worry those we love, and find it hard to speak to those closest to us. For this reason, sometimes children and young people want help talking things through with someone neutral. The therapist will not judge them, or you, and will be looking to help them find their way with whatever it is that is troubling them.
IS COUNSELLING FOR CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE DIFFERENT THAN COUNSELLING FOR ADULTS?
As children and young people do not always respond to the traditional method of talking therapy we, at Zest For Life Counselling Service offer the opportunity for the client to engage in working creatively. Creative therapy uses images – in art, clay, sound, sand, or just the images inside your own head to help the therapist understand your inner world and experience. Some sessions may be spent talking and listening and whether to use the art media is always a free choice.
WHAT TYPE OF ISSUE/PROBLEMS DO CHILDREN/YOUNG PEOPLE COME TO COUNSELLING WITH?
Children and young people attend counselling for a wide range of reasons such as; Anxiety, depression, relationship difficulties, self harm, low self esteem, trauma, family difficulties, parental separation, bullying and many more
ARE PARENTS OR CARE GIVERS INVOLVED IN THEIR CHILD OR YOUNG PERSON’S COUNSELLING?
As most children and young people are brought to counselling by their parents or caregivers, we at Zest for Life Counselling Service provide a friendly, welcoming, and non-judgemental atmosphere in which we encourage the support and involvement of the parents/caregivers. Research shows that this significantly increases the effectiveness of therapy.
You will be offered an opportunity to meet with the therapist to enable you to ask any questions that you may have.
Whilst it is natural for you as a parent to feel anxious about your child accessing therapy, showing an acceptance of the need for it, can be invaluable in helping your child to participate in the work. Allowing your child space to discuss the therapy if they wish to do so, without them feeling pressed into it, can also be very helpful.
WHAT IF MY CHILD REFUSES TO HAVE COUNSELLING/THERAPY?
Counselling and Therapy can only take place when a child or young person is willing to engage with a therapist as sessions are attended on a voluntary basis. Children and young people are involved in the setting goals for the work, deciding what they would like from their sessions and the evaluation process.
WHAT IF MY CHILD/YOUNG ADULT TELLS THE THERAPIST THINGS ABOUT MY FAMILY?
It is important that your child feels free to talk about experiences in the family that may be troubling or confusing. It matters that you give approval to your child to talk to the counsellor. It is understandable you might feel worried about what your child may wish to talk about. however, you should bear in mind that the code of ethics counsellors follow, includes clauses about confidentiality. To improve communication, we encourage and facilitate children to share the content of their therapy sessions with parents and caregivers. The counsellor is not there to judge you or anyone else in your family, their sole purpose is to help your child manage their problems and try to resolve them in a positive way.
CAN I ASK HOW MY CHILD/YOUNG PERSONS SESSIONS ARE GOING?
It is natural that you will want to know how your child is getting on in counselling. The counsellor will arrange to meet with you to review progress. It is important to remember the therapist has agreed to a confidential relationship with your child, but will encourage sharing with your child’s consent, and knowledge of what is to be discussed. The only exception to this would be if the counsellor thought your child was at serious risk of harm to themselves or other children at risk.
HOW LONG WILL MY CHILD/YOUNG PERSON NEED TO SEE THE COUNSELLOR FOR?
From years of experience, we work in an open-ended way, continuing to provide sessions until the issues are resolved and the client feels ready to leave.