If your child is having some difficulties in life that are emotional or psychological in nature, then there are some very effective therapies that can be used to help children.
You will probably find relatively few EMDR therapists, counsellors or hypnotherapists who have the specialist training, and are experienced in, and enjoy working with children. I am a former teacher, have more than 18 years' experience in working with young people, in both primary and secondary education. I am one of a few EMDR practitioners who are accredited and trained to work with children from nursery school age.I hold a Diploma in Clinical and Advanced Hypnotherapy, and I was trained by Lynda Hudson who is renowned for her work with children.
Children are great to work with because they are imaginative and they enjoy the experience. The doorway between the conscious and the unconscious mind is the imagination. For children, it's relatively easy - Stories, adventures, visualization, imaginative games, role-playing, work most effectively with children.
When we first meet I will chat with your child to find out what they think about the problem situation and to find out how they would prefer to be thinking, feeling and behaving.
It is important that this stage is focused on talking to them… rather than just asking you questions about them… to reassure them that they are the important person in the room and their opinion count. When I need extra information I usually ask the child's permission if it is alright if I ask mum or dad a question. It's important to remember that a child's problems are as important as an adult's. Children need to be treated with as much respect as we treat adults.
The second part is light relaxation with gentle yet powerful positive suggestions. Parents are very welcome to be in the treatment room if your child is more comfortable with you there. In the case of young children I always encourage parents to stay, especially for the first session, so your child will feel more at ease. It also puts your mind (as the parent) at ease to see that the process is safe and positive.
Sometimes older children prefer to be on their own so they don’t have a sense of ‘being watched’. I recommend you to have a chat with your child and go along with their preferences as even some younger children are quite happy on their own after a first or second session. Also remember that children mature quite differently and can often seem considerably older or younger than their chronological age.
Issues, for which EMDR and hypnotic methods are helpful, include:
- Addictive Behaviours including dependence on alcohol, solvents, drug use
- Adjustment difficulties
- Anxiety and Worries
- Attachment Difficulties
- Complex Trauma (after witnessing or being involved in difficult life events, such as emergency medical procedures, or witnessing a violent home life).
- Depression and Mood Disorders
- Dissociative Difficulties
- Eating Difficulties
- OCD & Phobias
- PTSD & Psychological Trauma (Including Acute Stress Disorder)
- Systemic issues affecting children (such as divorce or bereavement)
In reality this could mean performing better in the classroom, getting to school and liking it, behavioural problems at home or at school; test and exam nerves, friendlessness, Nail biting, thumb sucking, bedwetting, nightmares and fear of the dark, sleeping difficulties, anxiety; panic; stealing, low self-esteem, lack of confidence; fear of the dentist; other fears and phobias; coping with bullying, dealing with divorce or death in a family, illness - their own or someone in the family, and a myriad of other problems.