"Art therapy utilizes the act of art making as part of the therapeutic process. For some, this might be as simple as providing an expressive outlet and providing a "distraction" in order to ease the awkwardness of talking about difficult emotions or situations. For others, the art becomes the language of the client, containing symbols and metaphors for their inner experiences. Either way, the act of art making also provides its own therapeutic benefits. There has been quite a bit of scientific research on the effectiveness of art therapyespecially in regards to trauma, anxiety, and depression. If you"re interested in learning more, I"m always happy to set up a consultation and share more about art therapy and the brain.
A lot of times when kids say they don"t want to go to therapy, it may be due to past negative experiences with therapy or simply the fear of not knowing what will happen in therapy. I often encourage teens to "give it a try" for at least 4-6 sessions, with the understanding that we want to hear their input about whether or not they are willing to continue services.
Will you please get my child to just behave/do their homework/stop fighting?
Even though sometimes it might feel like your child is acting out just to rebel or to spite you, it is very rare for behaviors to occur in isolation of emotional and/or relational struggles. Rather than merely addressing the symptoms (the acting out behaviors), I aim to focus on the root causes of those issues by supporting my clients as they work through their emotional/relational issues. I don"t have any sort of magic wand that makes bad behaviors immediately disappear, but I have seen behavioral improvements in my clients, along with increased self-esteem, better use of healthy coping skills, and stronger relationships with others."