What to Expect
The set up for our in-home sessions is simple. You will need a small space where you and your child can play. It could be on the floor, at the kitchen table, or at a coffee table. You will need a cell phone with earbuds for coaching and I will bring 2-3 toy options for play sessions. For practice between sessions, you will need 1-2 toys that are open-ended with no specific rules (i.e. Legos or blocks, crayons and paper, animals, dolls, trains, cars, food toys) for free play.
All of our sessions, except a few key sessions for parents to learn new information, involve joint parent-child playtime as the mechanism for change. I will coach you live through earbuds as you are using new skills as you play with your child. Treatment is divided into two parts. The first part is focused on the relationship and the second part is focused on effective discipline strategies. Children tend to enjoy and look forward to sessions, especially in the first phase, making progress easier.
Our goal will be to finish about 6 months, but it can take up to a year. How quickly we finish will really depend on how quickly you are able to consistently incorporate the new skills into everyday life and how your child responds to the strategies. Daily 5-10 minute practice between sessions is the single fastest way to get the behavior change you want as quickly as possible. We will continue to work together until you have met the goals you set for yourself and your child at the start of treatment. We will also use other tools to measure progress and success from session to session.
Sessions are centered around the child identified as needing services. However, I realize there are circumstances where there are siblings or other children in the home, some of whom you may also have behavior concerns about. We can make a plan together on if, when, and how to involve them in our sessions.
While parent-child therapy can address so many issues that show up in early childhood, it cannot address them all, and sometimes other services are more appropriate. A free initial consultation is required for both you and I to determine if my services are a good match for your needs. If I am not the right therapist for your family, I am happy to refer you to other professionals who would be.