Counselling is therapy that helps you deal with your personal problems. It involves talking and discussing your problems with a professional counsellor and together finding ways to control or solve them. Child counselling is necessary when children cannot understand or control their emotions or behaviour. Certain issues with children that would help with counselling include relationships with family and step-family, bullying, bereavement/loss of a loved one, emotional or behavioural problems, literacy, and numeracy problems.
Your child’s therapist uses various techniques such as play, art, storytelling, drawing or talk therapy to encourage your child to speak openly about his/her feelings and experiences that may be disturbing them. A relationship of trust is built and goals are formulated after carefully and thoughtfully listening to your child. Goals are based on your child’s fundamental needs and your needs as parents.
During the course of the counselling, your child is encouraged to discuss their experiences and find solutions or methods of coping with them. What is said remains confidential, and is not judged or criticised. Children are encouraged to make positive decisions to manage their emotions and behaviour and to recognise the negative consequences of bad behaviour. It helps them develop a positive attitude, recognise their strengths, accept their weaknesses, express themselves better and deal with painful or disturbing experiences.
Counselling sessions may be one-on-one or involve the family. It usually takes six to twelve weeks or longer depending on the needs of your child.