Through the relationship with the therapist in a consistent setting, the child or young person may begin to feel able to express their most troubling thoughts and feelings. Confused, frightened, hurt, angry or painful feelings can gradually be put into words rather than actions. The therapist can help the child make sense of their own experience and develop their own individuality and potential. The child or young person may begin to feel less anxious, more able to learn and better equipped to sustain friendships and other relationships.
Research has shown that improvements are long-term, with adults who were treated as children or young people still feelings its impact many years later.
Parents, carers and other family members can feel overwhelmed by a child or young person’s difficulties and their impact on the rest of the family. The input of a therapist can help them make sense of a child’s behaviour, explore how their own issues might interfere with their ability to parent well and look at different possibilities in parenting styles.
The space to explore the relationships within the family in a supportive environment can result in improvements in the quality of life within the family.
This section uses information available at the Association of Child Psychotherapists: http://www.childpsychotherapy.org.uk/