Are you worried about your child and not sure where to find the right help?
Are you considering child counseling?
Is your child having trouble adjusting in some way?
Is your child having challenges at school, home, or in the community?
Maybe he or she is having persistent fearfulness and overreacts to situations.
Maybe your child has had a sudden drop in grades, loss of interest in activities or is expressing thoughts of suicide.
Maybe your child has withdrawn, preferring to be alone or appears to be “going through something”.
Are you tired and out of ideas about how to help or where to turn?
Do you wish you could help your child experience more peace?
Do other parents feel this way?
It is common for parents to feel overwhelmed and lost when trying to find the right therapist for their child. Finding a great therapist match for your child can be a tiring process, especially in a city like Sacramento where you have many options.
A good place to start is making sure the therapist is licensed to practice in California and has experience dealing with childhood related mental health conditions. While finding a therapist with a license and education is important, making sure your child feels comfortable with the therapist is essential.
Can my child can overcome a mental health issue?
With the help of a trained therapist, your child can begin to express themselves in healthier ways. My hope is to build upon your child’s strengths as well as your strengths as a parent to discover creative and alternate ways to find solutions. Being a parent is tough no matter what your particular situation, there is nothing wrong with seeking help.
Everyone, including children, have the ability to overcome challenges and learn about themselves during the process. Taking time to address your child’s mental health needs with a profession can help your child become more resilient and able to bounce back from life’s inevitable obstacles.
If my child won’t talk, how will you know what’s going on?
As your child grows up, they are continuously learning language and vocabulary. Often times if a child is having a tough time they will express it through disruptive or confusing behaviors.
Many children find it scary or difficult to talk in a clinical setting or “talk therapy”. During art therapy, I will help your child communicate by utilizing art to speak their language.
Creating artwork is a non-threatening venue that allows children to tackle tough issues in a creative way. Talking to your child about their drawings or paintings and helping them interpret the art allows me to get to the heart of the problem affecting them.
How will art therapy help my child learn new coping skills?
I will work with your child to help identify unique coping skills that are effective for them. Some of the children I have worked with have found effective coping through art therapy treatment.
relaxation — art making as a calming or soothing agent
impulse control, motor control — pacing themselves through art making tasks
communication — expression of thoughts and feelings
practice, practice, practice — visualize and reinforce other coping skills acquired in therapy through art making process
Can you help LGBTQ youth?
Young LGBTQ people may experience discrimination, teasing, or bullying in schools as well as in the community which can lead to a higher risk of mental health conditions such as self-harm and thoughts of suicide (NAMI, 2018). Many LGBTQ youth who I work with either have experienced victimization at school or have previously experienced it.
It is important to support LGBTQ youth’s mental health as early intervention can be extremely supportive for a healthy sexual development. Increasing a LGBTQ youth’s amount of emotional support is key in the road to recovery.
What do I do next?
When you are ready, simply contact me. I offer a free 15-minute consultation. To connect, click here.
Martha Cowley, M.A., LMFT, ATR is a psychotherapist with a private practice in Sacramento, CA. Martha utilizes art therapy with children, families, adults, and couples. She is trained and specializes in EMDR, Art Therapy, depression treatment, LGBTQ counseling, as well as child and teen counseling.