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Reflective Dawn Counselling Counselling in Colliers Wood and South West London

Bookings are being taken now.

The group will be run as weekly 2 hour sessions over 10 weeks.

Evening - Thursdays - time to suit committed participants - approx. 6:30-8:30pm.

An initial deposit needs to be made to secure your space.

Please get in touch if instalment arrangements are required - to be paid prior to start date.

No training session during school holidays.

What is Child Parent Relationship Therapy?

Child Parent Relationship Therapy is a structured, supportive group training programme for parents, stepparents and carers.

It is a special training to help strengthen the relationship between a parent and a child by using 30-minute play sessions once a week. Play is important to children because it is the most natural way they communicate. Toys are like words for children and play is their language. Adults talk about their experiences and express what they think and how they feel. Therefore, parents are taught to have special structured 30-minute play sessions with their child using a kit of carefully selected toys in their own home. Parents, you will learn how to respond emphatically to your child's feelings, build your child's self-esteem, help your child learn self-control and self-responsibility, and set therapeutic limits during these special play sessions.

For 30 minutes each week, the child is at the centre of the parent's universe. In this special play session, the parent creates an accepting relationship in which a child feel completely safe to express himself through his play - fears, likes, dislikes, wishes, anger, loneliness, joy, or feelings of failure. This is not a typical playtime. It is a special playtime in which the child leads and the parent follows.

In this special relationship there are no:
Put downs
Requirements (to draw pictures a certain way, etc)
Judgements (about the child or his play as being good or bad, right or wrong)

Training is provided to a small group of parents and carers (children do not attend), in 10 weekly sessions of 2 hours each.

The course is delivered through a mixture of presentations, video clips, group discussions, demonstration and skills practice, including discussion and debrief of the play sessions carried out at home.

If you have more than one child, you choose one child as the focus for the training, however, afterwards, of course, the skills you have learnt and indeed the play sessions themselves can then be applied with the other children in your family.

CPRT is an evidence based filial therapy model developed by Sue C. Bratton, Garry L. Landreth, Theresa Kellam and Sandra R. Blanchard in the United States.

What will parents be taught?

You will be taught how to:

• identify and respond effectively to your children’s feelings
• use reflective listening skills
• set effective limits, and
• enhance your children’s self esteem.

CPRT is equally suited to enhancing already positive parent-child relationships, enabling parents to support their children through particularly difficult experiences, and helping to build relationships which are new or have been damaged by ill health or life events. The system has proved effective in many different situations.

How is this different from other parenting courses?

I see many children in my practice and in schools and often have parents come to me desperately wanting help and support.
I believe parents are ideally placed to manage their own children's emotions and behaviours - indeed most parents would prefer this than trying to access therapeutic services which can be hard to access. When children are angry or anxious, parents can find it hard to know what to do especially when issues have been escalating for months or years. Therapeutic play skills can easily be learned and applied at home.

Unlike many parenting courses, which ask carers to apply the new skills they are learning consistently throughout their parenting, CPRT trains parents to deliver one half-hour play session per week. This makes the programme very manageable for the majority of parents, while the effects of the play and communication in the weekly sessions between parent and child can have extremely positive effects on all aspects of the parent-child relationship.

How can CPRT help my child?

In the special play sessions, you will build a different kind of relationship with your child and your child will discover that she/he is capable, important, understood and accepted as she is. When children experience a play relationship in which they feel accepted, understood, and cared for, they play out many of their problems and, in the process, release tensions, feelings, and burdens. Your child will then feel better about herself/himself and will be able to discover her own strengths and assume greater self-responsibility as she/he takes charge of play situations.

How your child feels about herself/himself will make a significant difference in her/his behaviour. In the special play sessions where you learn to focus on your child rather than your child's problem, your child will begin to react differently because how your child behaves, how she/he thinks, and how she/he performs in school are directly related to how she/he feels about herself/himself. When your child feels better about herself/himself, she/he will behave in more self-enhancing ways rather than self-defeating ways.

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