Parent / Child Psychologist

Taking your child to see a psychologist may make you feel worried and anxious, and maybe even guilty. This is perfectly normal – you as a parent are programmed to worry about them and to want the best for them. Meet with the psychologist, discuss your concerns, and work in partnership to reduce the problems your child is experiencing. Remember, helping your child be the best they can be is what good parenting is all about.

Many parents bring their children to psychologists like us for a number of reasons. They may be:

  • Acting out, rude or aggressive
  • Shy and anxious or clingy and tearful
  • Have experienced a difficult event such as an accident or a death
  • Had difficulty adjusting to a new situation such as starting or moving schools
  • Had difficulty adjusting to or accepting a new family member (such as a sibling, step parent or step siblings)
  • Have toileting issues
  • Or in fact any issues that you as a parent or caregiver are concerned about

In order to effectively treat children, your psychologist will need to conduct a thorough assessment. Below is the process we usually take when giving children psychological treatment:

  1. In the first session we need to meet with the parents/caregivers, preferably without the child. This enables us to learn about the child’s current problems, their history, their development and early years (some of which is not appropriate to discuss in front of the child).
  2. The second session involves the child, with the psychologist learning about the current problems from the child’s perspective, and assessing their developmental level and thinking processes. Depending on the age of the child, this is often done through drawings, play and creative questions.
  3. In the third session and any necessary further assessments, the psychologist will formulate a preliminary and contextual understanding of the issue – that is, the problem for this child within their family and environment, and will discuss this with you, the parent or caregiver. Your child’s issues will differ from another child with similar problems because your child’s family and environment are unique and the formulation helps the psychologist tailor the treatment to your child specifically. This formulation is also not fixed – it will develop as the psychologist works with your child and learns more about him or her.

Therapy with children often takes longer than therapy with adults. Children learn through play, stories and actions, rather than traditional talking therapy. The most important part of therapy is that your child learns to trust the psychologist, and again, this takes time.

For therapy to be most effective, parents should be part of the process. The psychologist will have one hour with your child every week or fortnight, but you have your child for the other 167 hours of the week. Therefore, part of therapy with your child is helping you learn new ways to help your child at home and at school.

We have extensive experience working with parents and children. As Clinical Psychologists, our counselling methods and treatments are highly effective, rooted in years of research and testing.

Book an appointment

We treat patients from all over Perth at our Clinical Psychology clinics in Dianella and Warwick. To make an appointment simply give us a call or fill out the contact form on our contact page with your details and we’ll call you to confirm.

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