Play is a tool of childhood for learning, growth, and fun. It is the medium which children use to imitate adult roles, discover socially acceptable behaviors, experiment with language and ideas, and work through emotional and traumatic experiences. Play has been called the language of childhood. By watching children play, we learn more about their thoughts and feelings than by talking with them.
Play Therapy allows children a safe psychological distance from their problems and allows them to express their true thoughts and feelings in ways best suited to their developmental level. Children naturally engage in play to create meaning and organize their experiences. This allows children to distance themselves from difficult feelings and memories through symbolic expression, using the toys as the medium to disclose these feelings.
The Association for Play Therapy defines play therapy as “The systematic use…of the therapeutic powers of play to help clients prevent or resolve psycho-social difficulties and achieve optimal growth and development”.
Play therapy is the outlet through which children are able to work through difficult experiences understand emotions, and learn. The therapist provides the child with the appropriate outlet and facilitates the child’s growth around and through the cause of therapy. The child wants to work through the event, but doesn’t always know how or have the opportunity to do so on his/her own. Play therapy starts where the child is developmentally and emotionally.
Psychotherapy is a collaborative process in which we work together to understand the problems that have brought you or your child in, and work towards mutually established goals. The experience of psychotherapy involves verbalizing your thoughts and feelings, exploring relational and behavioral patterns, and learning how past experiences may impact you now. Through this process we strive to gain greater awareness of how both conscious and unconscious processes play out in your emotional and relational life. Ultimately, psychotherapy can help individuals come to better understand themselves and enjoy greater choice in their lives.
For all children up through 12 years of age, I will meet with the parents/guardians for approximately the first 10 minutes of the 45-minute session. I can also offer sessions which are entirely focused on parenting issues. All adolescents receive full confidentiality, within the limitations of the law. However, in most cases, family members end up being involved in sessions to some degree.
Copyright © 2021 Danielle L Sciarrino LCSW, RPT - All Rights Reserved.