Lizzie offers a safe, non-judgemental space, for you and your child to share your concerns, better understand the difficulties and think through what may help.
Nearly all children go through phases where their emotional needs can feel hard to meet, or their behaviour seems particularly difficult or worrying. Some of these phases are short lived, whilst others are harder to deal with and could benefit from specialised help. As a parent or carer, you might feel like you are failing by not being able to understand, communicate with or help your child as much as you would like. In addition, seeking professional support can be daunting: you may already have looked online for advice and information, only to find it confusing or hard to apply to your own circumstances; sometimes people aren’t sure if the problems are ‘bad enough’ to warrant therapy; if you decide to look for a therapist it can be hard to know where to start.
Recognising the wish for something to change, and taking the first step to get some support is an important, brave, first step. Lizzie has worked effectively with children and young people who have a wide range of difficulties, to varying levels of severity. Some examples are: depression, stress and anxiety, deliberate self harm, anger management issues, family and relationship problems, school-related difficulties, bereavement and low self-confidence. Lizzie works with children and young people who have learning and/or social communication difficulties.
An free, initial phone consultation will identify the main concerns and reasons for seeking help. It’s a chance for you to ask any questions, and decide whether or not to take work forward. If you decide that Lizzie’s services are not for you, that’s no problem! Equally, if it’s not clear that art therapy is the best way forward at this time, Lizzie will do her best to signpost you to a more suitable service. Sessions are usually on a weekly basis, at the same time each week. We start with a 6 session assessment, to think more about the problems and find out whether further art therapy is likely to be helpful.
Work with children, young people and family groups differs from individual treatment with adults. There are more complex dynamics at play, and there is very careful thinking during assessment, to become clear about what type of therapeutic approach to take. It is often helpful for other family members to join the first assessment session, so as to get everyone’s views on the problem and what they would like to improve. The next four sessions are usually individual sessions with your child, so that they can begin to share what is on their mind; we then meet together with parent(s)/carer(s) (and other family members) in the sixth session, to review how the sessions have been so far and decide whether or not to continue. In art therapy, a range of creative and play materials is available. However, there is no pressure to make art: what matters is finding an approach that works best to meet each individual’s needs… I’m skilled at using talking approaches to therapy too.
Therapeutic interventions can be as short as 6 weeks, but many people find the support so valuable that they choose to access it for much longer. It can seem like an expensive process; however the improvements in well-being and interpersonal relationships which can come about can make it a lifetime investment. Any ongoing intervention is devised in partnership with you and your child, according to need. Sessions can be individual, parent-child or family. We may agree that your child would benefit from individual therapy time, in which case regular parent/carer reviews are built in, so as to discuss progress. Separate sessions for you as parent(s)/carer(s) may be effective, in which we reflect on your parenting style, gain greater understanding about and explore new ways of responding to your child’s emotional state or behaviour. Family sessions—perhaps with the aim of improving family relationships or communication—might seem like the most helpful way forward.
We think carefully together to recognise the best time to end therapy, and prepare for this gradually so that both you and your child feel fully ready to end.
My current fee is £60 per session; I am sometimes able to offer reduced rates, for people in particular circumstances, so do ask if you think this may apply to you.
Our daughter has come out of her shell and made more progress in these 8 weeks than in her whole time at school so far… Now she is doing activities which she would never have done before!
Boundaries are now set and followed through. There are fewer tantrums, and my child is more respectful of us, her teachers and our decisions.
I think the therapy has helped my son to reflect more and is a starting point for more changes to take place.
It has been a great pleasure working with Lizzie. She shows genuine concern for the child. My son has also enjoyed the sessions.
The sessions helped my son build his confidence and self-esteem. He was at a very low point and now he is a much happier, more confident boy
Art therapy sessions have helped my son put a voice to what he thinks and feels
We now have better understanding of our daughter’s feelings; it has also helped give me more confidence in myself as a parent
Lizzie has helped me with understanding other ways to communicate with my child
The therapist is well liked and respected by the family, but most importantly our child, who now feels happy and calm
This was a very valuable process. My son has felt able to express anger, and then re-connect with his positive emotions. He has appreciated spending 1-1 time with a professional, the space to express himself, and help to find better ways to manage his feelings