We see parents and carers as the primary people who can help their child to heal, and much of our work is dedicated to sharing our therapeutic skills with adults supporting the child so that the therapeutic approach can be used at home, not just in the therapy sessions. Parenting a traumatised child who is distrustful, rejecting of love and care, and reluctant to allow adults to be in charge can be an exhausting, overwhelming and bewildering experience for parents and carers who, without support and understanding, can be at risk of becoming traumatised themselves.
Each week parents and carers have time alone with the therapist prior to the session with the child. This time can be used flexibly for coaching parents in therapeutic skills, reviewing video footage of previous sessions, understanding the meaning of particular problematic behaviours, problem-solving how to manage particular issues at home, and exploring how parents can look after their own emotional wellbeing. Parents and carers then, guided by the therapist, play an active role in the child’s therapy session, comforting the child as they explore difficult emotions and memories, and sharing moments of joy, fun and success.