Choosing to adopt can be a challenge for parents because it requires a new type of relationship with the adopted child. Parenting is a lifelong job, and the right guidance and support are imperative. New environments might be challenging for an adopted child, and it is the responsibility of the parents to notice any form of behavioral change. In the event a child has some troubling behavior, therapy is one of the best directions a parent can take.
Finding an Adoption-Competent Therapist
Finding a child therapist who is adoption-competent will assist in tackling issues such as attachment, grief, anxiety, and trauma. When considering adopted children, past experiences might influence their behavior; therefore, a therapist with expertise in adoption can help to determine the source of trauma. The therapist can assist the child with past experiences and also guide parents on helpful ways to live together. If the child experiences anxiety issues, therapists can often offer anxiety therapy.
The Right Approach to Therapy
Child therapists should be dedicated to working with the family to ensure the adopted child receives the right care in the best possible environment and feels secure. An adopted child may have attachment issues that could bar them from creating a relationship with the adoptive family. Child therapists who have a history with adopted children understand the intricacies and challenges adopted children face and are in a better position to offer counseling sessions that will help them to adapt to their new environment. Thus, choosing an experienced therapist is essential in the treatment process.
Weighing Therapy Options
There are many different choices when it comes to deciding on the therapy style that works best for a family. Parents can opt to utilize child therapists with experience in behavioral challenges to help with any specific issues that the child might have. Family therapy is another avenue that allows a therapist to balance the needs of the adoptive family and the child. Group therapy brings together individuals with similar problems to helps them navigate through. A child therapist who understands adoption needs will help make the coping process more manageable, so parents should not shy away from seeking help after adoption. At Cross The Bridge Counseling, we offer therapy and counseling to kids and teens struggling with anxiety, ADHD, Asperger’s, and social skills. We are dedicated to the emotional well-being of our clients and their families, also providing adult therapy and couples counseling. To find the adoption-friendly therapist for your family, get in touch with us at (845) 342-5789.
Before attending their first counseling session, most children will have lots of questions, even if they don’t quite know how to ask them. They will probably be dealing with a range of emotions, including anxiety, uncertainty, and even the fear that they’ve done something wrong. Parents who discuss counseling with their children before it begins can help them feel more comfortable. This may lead to more meaningful and productive counseling sessions.
Be Straightforward and Honest
The most important component in any therapy setting is trust. What a parent chooses to talk about will largely depend on the age of their child, but being honest is critical because recovering from deception at the beginning of the process will be very difficult.
Make certain that children understand they are not going to counseling because they need to be “fixed” or as a form of punishment. Parents, this is a good time to take responsibility for some of the changes that may need to be made in the family—explain that the entire family is facing these challenges together so that everyone can get the help they need.
Let Them Make Decisions and Ask Questions
Children who feel like they are being forced to participate are unlikely to open up. Before counseling begins, parents should explain that their child only has to give the sessions a try and that if they don’t like them or the counselor, then they don’t have to continue. Also, parents can encourage their children to ask them about counseling and admit when they don’t know the answer to a question. For children, feeling that they have a say in the process and aren’t in this alone makes a big difference.
Early childhood counseling can help kids with a variety of issues, from developing social skills to anger management. Since 1998, Cross The Bridge Counseling has provided these therapeutic services as well as a range of evaluations and assessments to children and adults in Middleton and Rock Hill. If you’re interested in speaking with one of our therapists, get in touch with us at (845) 342-5789 to learn more.