At Sydney Couple and Family Specialists, we have been counselling children for more than 25 years. We have the skills, expertise and experience to make a big difference if your child needs support. Sydney Couple and Family Specialists offer child counselling in Sydney at our two centrally-located practices in Paddington and Woolloomooloo. If you’re looking for child counselling, feel free to call us on 02 8968 9397 or complete the online contact form to book an appointment today.
It’s hardly surprising that there has been an increase in demand for child counselling.
The current generation of children live in amazing times. But their easy access to information and other people comes with risks. Earlier generations didn’t have to worry about cyber-bullying or online predators. Parents could more easily monitor what their children were exposed to and create appropriate boundaries.
The Child Therapists at Sydney Couple and Family Specialists are all parents. We understand the difficulties of modern-day childhood and the stresses of modern-day parenting. Specialist training, and the insight that comes from personal experience makes us uniquely equipped to help children who need child counselling.
Our child counselling services are appropriate for children between the ages of 7 and 12. We can also provide teen counselling for older children.
Specialist child counselling can help children overcome immediate challenges and become better equipped to grow up healthy and happy.
Why your child might need counselling
If you have a child who is being impacted by any of the following, they may benefit from counselling – and so might the entire family. It’s very typical for others to be affected when a child is struggling.
- Abuse, trauma or neglect
- Anger management
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Behavioural problems (such as aggression, defiance, oppositional and controlling behaviours)
- Bereavement and Loss
- Disabilities including Autism and Developmental Delays
- Divorce and separation
- Eating disorder
- Learning Difficulties
- Obsessive behaviours
- Self-harm and suicide ideation
- Separation anxiety
- Shyness and clinginess
- Sibling Rivalry
How does child counselling work?
Effective child counselling starts with creating safe environment for the child to explore and express the things they’re struggling with. Not every child can explain what’s going on for them in words. They might not have the language to do that yet, and there might be other barriers in the way.
Sydney Couple and Family Specialist counsellors are trained in techniques to help to diagnose and treat children’s issues. A cautious, sensitive and patient approach is also essential to ensure that children are not misdiagnosed, and that they get maximum benefit from their child therapy sessions.
We are highly skilled at getting children to:
- Express themselves openly
- Develop healthy coping strategies
- Learn problem-solving skills and
- Manage themselves and their environment moving forward.
Our counsellors have had successful results in helping children who struggle with anxiety issues, trauma, behavioural issues, ADHD, adoption/fostering difficulties and the challenges of being part of blended families.
What to expect during a child counselling session
With younger children, the first counselling session is between the child counsellor and the child’s parent or carer. More than one parent or carer can attend if they wish.
The purpose of the first session is for the counsellor to gain an understanding of the problem and asses the child. A child therapy plan is often agreed upon at this stage.
After that, the counsellor is likely to work with parents or carers and provide them with feedback on how to manage their child’s situation. Sometimes this is done with the child in the room and sometimes not. Our counsellors may work directly with the child – but this depends on the child’s age and is less common than working with parents.
The type of counselling used for each child varies, according to age, the issues at hand and personality type. Sometimes more than one type of therapy will be used. A child counselling session may include:
- Play therapy
- Art therapy
- Talking therapy
- Expressive therapies
Parents and carers are always kept informed and involved. This is done by in session feedback. Email, Zoom meetings and phone appointments can also be arranged.
What to expect after child counselling
Our trained and experienced counsellors have seen many children turn the corner with their struggles after participating in our therapy sessions.
We have helped children:
- Develop self-esteem, self-respect and self-acceptance.
- Develop respect and acceptance of others.
- Find new and creative solutions to the problems they face.
- Take more responsibility for their behaviours, actions and choices.
- Learn to experience and express their emotions in appropriate ways.
- Acquire new social skills.
- Become more empathetic.
- Gain confidence.
- Know how and when to ask for help.
Are there warning signs that parents should get counselling support for their child?
There are some warning signs that parents and teachers should look out for in children. These red flags indicate that the child is in distress and needs help. Signs that your child may need counselling include:
- Noticeable changes in emotional expression (either heightened or greatly subdued)
- A shift in sleeping patterns (including increased sleep and disturbed sleep)
- More frequent episodes of anger or anxiety
- Increased levels of anger or anxiety
- Changes in eating habits
- Withdrawal from friends, school and hobbies
If you notice any of these behaviours in your child, it’s best to be proactive and seek professional help as soon as possible. Early intervention gives a child the best chance of overcoming even the most serious challenges.
Contact us today
Our child counsellors are available to help your child cope better with life’s challenges. At Sydney Couple and Family Specialists, we provide some of the best child counselling in Sydney. Call today on 02 8968 9397 or complete our contact form.
Our clinic also provides teen counselling, youth counselling and relationship counselling.