Navigating Difficult Problems – Understanding the Benefits of Family Counseling
When children are born, parents aren’t immediately equipped with the skills and experience they’ll need to help their kids with all of life’s problems. It‘s a learning process and while parenting classes and advice from friends and family can help some, problems can be so challenging that parents need the support of trained professionals to guide them to what is best for the health, wellbeing, and treatment of their child.
Therapists can help your child through hard times, such as family conflicts, school issues, bullying, mental health problems, and substance abuse. Through counseling sessions, children can learn how to deal with negative feelings including stress, anger, sadness, anxiety, grief, and low self-esteem. Therapists can also help kids struggling with trauma, depression, eating disorders, self-injury, and other disruptive disorders.
As the child’s parent, you play a crucial role in your kid’s treatment and recovery and finding the right resources for your family is vitally important.
Additionally, as kids get older and become more involved in school and other activities, they tend to spend less time with their parents when compared to early developing years. And too often, parents become less aware of the interactions and other factors that impact their child’s physical, emotional, and mental health. When parents are involved in counseling and support services, they better understand the root of their child’s problems. By increasing awareness of the source or cause of your child’s behavioral, psychological, and emotional issues, you can make efforts to protect them from these triggers in the future.
Family counseling provides many benefits, including improving communication, developing healthy boundaries, and providing support. During family counseling, your family can address dysfunctional interactions and strengthen family relationships and dynamics. With family therapy, you can learn how to better solve problems.
Family counseling can be approached in various ways and will be tailored to the specific issues that your family needs to address. There may be situations that require the counselor to meet with only the parents first before including the child in a session, or the therapist may speak with the child first.
In addition to counseling, let’s explore some of our programs to help children and families in need:
One of Communicare’s programs, H.Y.P.E.D. (Helping Youth Promote Empowered Decisions) 4 CHANGE is a system of care (SOC) or a coordinated network of community-based services and supports that is designed to meet the challenges of children and youth (ages 0-21) with serious mental health needs.
Another program we provide is The L.E.E.P. Project. This project provides self-help and mutual support for families of children and youth with serious emotional disturbances or mental health challenges. This service increases the knowledge, skills, and confidence of parents and family members in parenting their children.
The MAP Team is another service for families to explore. MAP is short for “Making A Plan”. The MAP team is made up of individuals from local community agencies and parent representatives that work with and represent children and youth. The first priority of MAP team is to review cases concerning children and youth, (ages 0 to 21), who have serious emotional/behavioral disorders or serious mental illness and are at risk for out-of-home placement due to the lack of access or availability of needed services and supports in the home and community.
We also have an Outpatient School-Based Program providing multifaceted services in our offices and throughout multiple school districts. These services are designed to serve children and youth with emotional or behavioral problems along with their families and can include screening, assessment, counseling, and/or crisis intervention. Our therapists can quickly intervene so children receive the help they need to maintain their highest possible level of wellness, life satisfaction, and independence as appropriate in the school setting.
Communicare’s Therapeutic Day Treatment Program provides intensive therapeutic services to school-age children/adolescents with serious emotional disturbances enabling them to remain in the least restrictive learning environment. Day Treatment Services are based on behavior management principles and include positive feedback, self-esteem building, and social skills training. Based on the needs of the child/adolescent, other services may include skills training in the areas of impulse control, anger management, problem-solving, and conflict resolution.
The MYPAC program is an intensive home and community-based program that utilizes the Wraparound Model to promote family-driven, youth-voiced care. Children and youth with an SED are eligible to participate in the MYPAC Program if they are at immediate risk of requiring treatment in a psychiatric residential treatment facility (PRTF) or if they are currently in a PRTF and ready to transition back into their home and community.
The wraparound process is a coordination of services provided to youth and families in a collaborative team-based approach to service and support planning. Families will identify their own needs and create methods and a plan to meet those needs. The wraparound team is comprised of formal and informal supports including the family, the youth, extended family, neighbors, friends, mentors, MYPAC staff, other agencies involved with the family (schools, churches, and/or CPS), and other community support services the family identifies who will work together in partnership to move through the four phases of wraparound: Engagement and Team preparation, Initial Plan Development, Plan Implementation, and Transition.
Getting the right level of support for your child and family starts with the right resources. Reach out to our team to see how we can best serve you for the brightest and healthiest of futures.