Therapy with Tweens: What to Expect
free initial phone consultation
Therapy always starts with an initial 15-30 minute phone consultation. I’ll ask you about what is going on for your child and your family. You can also ask me questions. From there, we decide if I am a good fit for you and your child.
first appointment WITH PARENTS
If we are a good fit, I schedule a meeting with you in person. I prefer to meet all of the child’s parents, either together or separately, depending on your preference and situation. In this meeting, we talk in depth about your child’s strengths and challenges as well as your expectations for therapy. I will have important forms for you to both sign and take home to fill out. In some cases I may recommend more than one initial parent meeting.
From there we schedule a time for me to meet your child. I will also send you an invitation to my secure client portal and messaging app, Spruce, both HIPAA-compliant.
First appointment with your tween
We identify a regular date and time for your child’s weekly appointments. When you bring your tween to the first appointment, you are welcome to come back to the therapy room with her or him. I talk with the child in e about what we do in therapy, show him or her the games and art supplies we can use, and we get to work!
the first 4-6 weeks of therapy
I spend the first month or so of therapy getting to know your child and getting a deeper understanding of what is going on and how best to approach it. I do this while your tween and I talk, play games, and make artwork. As we do these things, I pay attention to themes and behaviors, which give me a clue to their inner and outer world. At the end of this assessment period, with your and your child’s input, I create a treatment plan. This plan is a blueprint for the course of therapy.
with tweens, often talk therapy alone is not Enough
Therapy with tweens is a mix of play, talk, and games, with plenty of parent support sprinkled into the mix. For many tweens, doing helps talking, which is why board and card games are often part of the background of treatment. For artistically minded tweens, creating artwork smooths the way to deeper discussion. Mindfulness exercises are also useful.
Because we are partners working together in support of your child, it is very important we check in regularly either in person or on the phone. Therapy is most effective with your involvement. I see your child for just an hour or two each week. You know them best and see her or him in a variety of different places and times.
I schedule parent check-ins, either in person or on the phone on average every 4-6 weeks.
when is therapy over?
Depending on the issues, therapy can take a few months to a year or longer. I discuss my treatment time estimates with you. And sometimes it is helpful to come back on occasion for a tune-up, particularly during stressful or transitional times.