Outpatient Therapy Services

Therapy for Children

Children can benefit from therapy for a variety of reasons. Perhaps your child needs support after experiencing something difficult, maybe they are having trouble with a major life transition, or maybe you’ve noticed mental health symptoms in your child.

What to expect at your child’s first appointment

This can vary depending on your child’s age, developmental stage, and comfort level, but for the first appointment you can expect your child’s therapist to involve you in some way. This will be decided in collaboration with your child’s therapist during your consultation call or in the first 15 minutes of your 1st appointment. It may be appropriate, particularly if your child is young, for you to be present for the entire appointment. It might work best for you to be present for a few minutes at the beginning and end. Your therapist will want to get a history of your child and some of this information will be collected in the session, some will be collected in advance of the session, and some will be completed via intake documents that you complete on behalf of your child.

Some things to know:

  • Your child’s therapists’ first order of business will be to develop rapport with your child. This is the most important, foundational element for therapy and it’s particularly essential for children. Your child will need to feel safe and supported in the therapeutic relationship in order to progress towards therapy goals.
  • Therapy for children can look a lot different than therapy for adults. Some of the activities might appear to be play. For example, your child’s therapist may play games or create art with your child during sessions. It is normal for children to process experiences through play. With the expertise of a skilled therapist, this play can become a therapeutic intervention that feels safe and natural for your child.
  • In some cases, particularly if your child is older, you may be less involved in sessions as it may become appropriate for your child to begin to feel a sense of autonomy or even confidentiality in their therapy sessions. You can check in with your child’s therapist about this at any time and you can expect for your child’s therapist to be clear and direct if this is an appropriate approach for your child. Please see our section on individual therapy for teens to get a sense of what this looks like as children get older.

Chelsea Wesbrook, LMFT, is our staff therapist providing services for children. She utilizes a variety of modalities that involve parents in therapy as well so that therapy goals can be supported in the home environment between sessions. Chelsea is skilled at engaging children in virtual therapeutic work; however, if your child struggles to engage virtually, our services may not be the best fit for your family at this time. Chelsea is happy to provide a consultation to help you determine if her services are a good fit for you and your child.

Meet our therapists who specialize in Individual Therapy for Adults

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