As children, we learn from our parents how to cope with challenges in our lives with their model as our example. A child learns if they have value from the first interaction with parents, and as well as how to navigate obstacles along the way. If the family has an unhealthy approach to managing the ups and downs of life, if they do not acknowledge the bumps and bruises, if they pray it away, or ignore it, the child learns there is not any room for their big feelings. They think, “something must be wrong with me!”
If you work with children in a therapy setting, one of the best discoveries to make is that the parent of your client is your client too. Working as a play therapist for the last nineteen years, I have learned a few things about what parents of my clients want and need. I know for sure that they want to feel like they have a voice and can be seen. They matter. I want parents to understand how critical it is for them to be present for their child. If parents had any idea how much they matter, it would change everything. They have to be involved and be willing to allow for change, for the entire family unit.
Attachment Centered Play Therapy was written with you in mind – centering on the different types of traumas we see in our play therapy room and mental health clinics. It was written to help you, the therapist, understand the nature of trauma – from natural disasters to divorce to violence in the homes to prolonged separations between parent and child. How these experiences change the nature of the relationship and most importantly of all, what you can do to help repair, rebuild, and create lasting security and change. Parents are the only person who has the power to create lasting changes. If we do not involve them as we work with children in therapy, we are missing the kid. This book will give clinicians the tools to help parents recognize that if they feel powerless or scared, they do not have to have all the answers, they can know change is possible. This book not only dives into the attachment theory but also has practical application and interventions that empower parents to have awareness and tools to make permanent improvements with their relationship with their kids.