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The content of the therapy sessions and family meetings will be kept as confidential as possible unless a child/young person discloses that they, or someone else, are put at risk of significant harm. This is discussed during the first parent meeting and then with the child or young person when they begin therapy.
Consistency is important so therapy sessions usually take place at the same time on a weekly basis and each session usually lasts for about 45-50 minutes.
Usually, sessions are led by the child or young person. The therapy room is equipped with art materials, musical instruments, puppets, a sand tray and other creative materials. At North West Child Therapy we use various creative resources as this enables a child or young person to not have to rely solely upon words to express themselves. The reason a variety of creative resources are available is so that the young person can find the art medium and the 'vocabulary' that best suits them. Using art materials in addition to words in therapy just gives the young person more options of how they want to communicate.
Brain science and neurobiological studies have demonstrated the importance of using creativity in therapy, particularly as a way to help access experiences that may not be encoded in verbal memory located in the left brain. Using creativity may help access these right-brain experiences and emotions and then enable them to verbalised by the left brain. This can help a child to process difficult emotional experiences.
It is important that a therapist gains as much information as possible about the child's history and experiences and so the first initial meeting will be with parents/carers on their own.
After this initial meeting, the decision may be for just us to meet again without your child, to consider things further, or it may be decided to meet with the young person on their own. During this assessment process up to 10 therapy sessions can be offered to the child/young person in order to assess whether therapy might be helpful for them, or if it is needed.
Sometimes just meeting with parents can be enough to feel like things are resolved and sometimes just some brief work with the child or young person is needed. Other times a longer period of therapy might be needed. Each situation is different but at all stages, everything is thought about, discussed and agreed together. Therapy can only be successful if your child knows that you are in support of them attending.
Once therapy begins regular reviews are planned with parents/carers. This is to support you in supporting your child.
An estimate can be provided but we can discuss this in further detail when we first meet.