Family therapy is a reasonable option when a child or children, no matter what their age, are experiencing excessive
or prolonged difficulties in any of the following areas: regulating their emotions, parent and/or sibling relationships,
daycare or school difficulties, substance abuse, depression, anxiety and any other context where the child's troubles are
negatively impacting either them or those that care about them. At times I am asked, "Why does the whole family need to attend
therapy if only one child is having difficulties"? The simple answer is that, healing is a relational process and there are no
more important relationships in a child's life than either their parents or siblings.
However, depending on the circumstances I may suggest a specific number of sessions for one child followed by more
inclusive family/parental involvement. For example; I may use individual play therapy with a child who is experiencing
difficulties in day care or elementary school, followed by a number of sessions where the caregivers, parents and/or siblings
are included. The rational for such decisions are discussed with the client, caregivers and/or parents and a mutual decision
directs the manner in which therapy is conducted.