Child-Parent Psychotherapy (CPP) is a therapeutic approach designed specifically to support children and their parents or caregivers who have experienced significant stress, a series of changes, or trauma. Changes might include but are not limited to: parental separation, geographical relocation, or introduction of a new sibling. CPP works with children from birth through age 6, and it's intended to heal, restore, and strengthen the parent-child relationship following such challenging experiences.
We understand that significant changes or traumatic experiences can be deeply unsettling for a young child. Such events can affect their sense of safety and security, disrupt their emotional well-being, and potentially impact their development. Similarly, these experiences can be distressing for parents and may affect their parenting.
In CPP, the child and parent or caregiver are seen as a pair, and therapy involves working with this pair together. The goal is to support both in establishing or restoring a secure and nurturing relationship, which is crucial for a child's healing and development. This approach acknowledges that a strong, healthy relationship with a caregiver is a child's best resource for recovery.
During therapy, you and your child will be guided in creating a shared narrative about the stressful event or trauma. This process helps both of you make sense of what happened, express and understand your feelings, and develop strategies for coping.
CPP also helps parents understand their child's behavior and emotional needs better. You'll learn how trauma or stress might be influencing your child's behavior and how you can respond in ways that support their recovery.
One unique aspect of CPP is its use of play as a medium for communication. Young children often express their thoughts and feelings best through play, so play becomes a critical tool in therapy, helping your child express themselves and helping you understand your child more deeply.
Child-Parent Psychotherapy is not just about resolving the immediate impact of stress or trauma. It's also about equipping you and your child with the understanding and skills to navigate future challenges and build a resilient and healthy parent-child relationship. It's an approach that affirms your crucial role as your child's source of comfort, security, and strength, and helps you fulfill this role effectively, even in the face of adversity.
Learn more about CPP here.