FAQ

 

1) What brings a child into therapy?


In answer to this question you would probably say she is disturbed in some way; she is not getting along in school; she is aggressive or withdrawn; she has suffered trauma; she is reacting badly to the divorce of her parents, and so on. These are all symptoms and reactions? But what is it that is causing all these reactions and symptoms? What are the basic problems?

· Firstly, they have difficulty making good contact: contact with teachers, peers, books.
· Secondly, they generally have a poor sense of self.

When a child comes into therapy I know that she has lost what she once had, was entitled to have, as a tiny baby: the full and joyful use of her senses, her body, her intellect and the expression of her true emotions. During the therapeutic process it is my job to help her find and regain those missing parts of herself. To do this I use a variety of creative, expressive techniques. These techniques are powerful projections and provide a bridge to the inner life of the child. They can help the child express buried emotions where words are insufficient. They are techniques that have been used for thousands of years as modes of expression by early cultures. They can provide opportunities for new, healthy ways of being, and last, but not least to have fun!

 

2) What mediums do we use in therapy?


In the playroom we make use of a variety of mediums. These include:

clay,

paint,

sand,

glitter,

shaving cream,

water babies (squigies),

pictures,

puzzles,

games,

music and dance.

Or any medium that a child can use to express themselves. I try to keep as up to date with new and fun toys.

Through the use of the above mediums, play therapy aims to help children express feelings, thoughts, experiences and behaviours. Toys are used like words and become the child’s natural language. The child selects the toys and activities to play with. The therapist may join in the play on the child’s direction or invitation.

At a stage the child will act out, through their choice of toys, the issues in their own life. They may gain greater self awareness, greater responsibility and become more self empowered. Play therapy aims to help children develop self-responsibility and greater self awareness that may enable them to cope better in their world.

 

3) How long is the therapy?


The model I usually use with children involves 8 sessions of 45-60 minutes each. I will meet with you, the parent (in divorce cases both parents) before I start, after the 4th session and at termination. In some cases I may need up to 12-16 sessions.

 

4) What is an observation and why do you do it?


Before therapy begins I like to do an hour observation of the child. This gives me more information about the child, their environment and how they play. This helps me to choose a therapy plan to suit the child and his/her needs.

Effective observation is to refrain from interacting actively with the child, and instead I stand back and observe unobstrusively

 

5) What are the costs involved?


I am within medical aid rates. Please contact me directly and ask for an “Accounts Form” to give a more detailed layout of the costs involved.

 

6) How do I prepare my child for therapy?


It is extremely important to be aware of the fact that each parent is a co-therapist. It is also the role of the parent to let the child know why and when they are coming to see me. In my experience, honesty is usually the best way to go about this.

Give the child at least a week’s notice to prepare him/her. Answer all questions they may have truthfully, but age-appropriately.

 

7) What is confidentiality?


Confidentiality is very important in play therapy. As a skilled professional I am required to keep all activity in the playroom confidential and private.