As a parent, you always want what's best for your child. You want them to grow up happy, healthy, and loved. But there's no age restriction on mental health struggles. Sometimes counseling for children is the key to preserving your child's health and happiness.
Your child doesn't need to have "major problems" to benefit from counseling. Like with adults, professional help can assist children in normal day-to-day life. But there will be times when you're not sure how to help your child, and a professional's assistance is needed.
Counseling for children doesn't just help the child now. It also gives them the skills necessary to manage stress and conflict far into the future. Studies indicate that counseling for children can improve self-confidence, self-esteem, and overall social skills.
Another place that counseling helps is in transitions. Are you going through a big move? Is your child changing schools? Have you recently lost someone in the family? Is your child naturally transitioning through the confusion of adolescence?
All of these processes can be smoothed through effective counseling for children.
Benefits for Children
It's easy to forget how difficult it is to be a child. Children are learning how to process their emotions and experience the world in real time. They rely on the adults in their life to teach them how to navigate complicated situations. Emotions tend to be strong and difficult to control. What seems insignificant to you might seriously affect your child's mental state.
With counseling for children, a child learns to work through stress and transitions. They gain a measure of independence that they will carry into adulthood. The skills they learn will continue helping with difficult feelings throughout their lives.
Another note is that childhood has a major formative impact on adulthood. If you struggle to develop emotionally or socially, it can stunt your psychological growth. Counseling for children helps make sure that your child hits those developmental milestones. That way, they're primed for a healthy future.
The world is full of stressors both big and small. It's important for your child to learn coping mechanisms to deal with this. The counseling sessions are a safe place for them to express their worries and frustration without judgment.
Benefits for Families
Oftentimes, children's counseling will be accompanied by family counseling. But even without family therapy sessions, counseling for children can improve a family's functioning.
It can be difficult to deal with mental health problems in children and adolescents. Parents often feel frustrated and helpless. There may be a struggle for the parent and child to communicate about their needs.
In family counseling, family members work together to address conflicts and support each other. In individual counseling, your child will learn coping mechanisms to deal with their feelings. If you're accidentally contributing to their struggles, their counselor may ask permission to share with you. You can sit down with your child and arrive at a solution that promotes healing.
Another big component of counseling for children is communication. Even without their counselor in the room, your child will learn to communicate better. They may be better equipped to explain their feelings or needs, which reduces overall conflict.
This is especially helpful if you're going through any kind of turbulent situation. Counseling can help children adjust to a divorce, new marriage, death in the family, or other changes. The better you communicate, the easier it is to move forward.
When Does a Child Need Counseling?
All children are unique. All children respond differently to stressors and changes. What's troubling for one child might not be troubling for another.
Some parents might consider counseling through any kind of upheaval. These are some of the most common reasons that people consider counseling for their child:
- The child is being bullied or picked on at school.
- The child's parents are divorcing. Sometimes counseling can give the child an avenue to open up when their parents are too close to the situation.
- The child is struggling with mental health problems like depression, anxiety, or uncontrolled anger.
- The child has recently gone through a traumatic event of some kind.
- The child has begun acting strange and troubled for no apparent reason.
Here at Greene Psychology Group, we offer counseling for children and adults alike. In addition to individual therapy, we encourage family therapy as well. Call us today to talk about your child's needs. We can schedule an evaluation and begin outlining a plan of action.