Our Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist is departing in March 2022. We are not able to offer new appointments with a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist at this time. 

We do offer telehealth appointments with a Specialist Child and Adolescent Psychologist James. Please see our 'about us" website page for more information. 

Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy Service Information  

- For ages 7 years and above

- Initial Needs Assessment with the Caregiver, then another session with the child.

What is Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy?

Child and Adolescent psychotherapists are a group of people who are psychodynamically trained and have knowledge and skills in working with children and families who are experiencing difficulties in everyday life.  Child and Adolescent psychotherapists use a variety of approaches in working with families, groups or individuals of any age.

Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist is able to engage in talking therapy with children and young people but has specific training in observing and responding to what children might be communicating through their behaviour, play and way of relating to others.

A Child Psychotherapist will have an in-depth understanding of child development, attachment and the impact of experience on the developing brain. With these understandings Child and Adolescent Psychotherapists are able to support parents, families and carers to understand the meaning behind their child’s behaviour and increase their understanding of the child’s perspective.

The aim of child psychotherapy is to develop the child’s capacity for growth and development by establishing more appropriate ways of coping within their environment and flourishing within their family and peers.

The work of child psychotherapy occurs within the context of the family and the wider environment.


Who do Child Psychotherapists Work With?

A Child and Adolescent psychotherapist work with a variety of presentations and ages from an infant to early adulthood.  They are able to help with concerns regarding a child’s social relationships, their behaviour, their self-esteem and emotional wellbeing or struggles within the parent/child relationship or other concerns around mental health including oppositional behaviours, anxiety, depression, self-harm and developmental delay and much more.


How do Child Psychotherapists work?

A Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist will employ an intervention best suited to the child or young person’s age and stage of development,

Children will be seen in a playroom to facilitate their expression through play, adolescents will be more likely to talk about what is happening for them but may also appreciate other forms of expression such as art or the sand tray. This type of therapy helps children to find ways of verbalising their feelings rather than act them out. Feelings of anger, fear, confusion or shame, for example can be safely explored. The aim is to offer a safe therapeutic space for children and their parents/whanau and caregivers.



What will a session be like?

 A therapy session usually lasts 50 Minutes and happens once a week.

A Child Psychotherapist will decide what might suit the particular family after a brief phone conversation in the referral process. In the first session, the therapist will usually see all family/ whanau members who live with the young person, to explore their concerns and explain the therapy process.

Toys and art materials are provided for children to communicate their concerns through the use of symbolic play and activities. This could include dramatic play, painting, drawing and talking. The next sessions will vary depending on the issues being addressed.

Parents may meet with the therapist alone, and the whole family may be involved several times.

Commonly, the child will spend time on their own with the therapist. Some children find it difficult to talk about what is worrying them.

Child psychotherapists are trained to understand a child’s emotional and relational world through observing their play and art work. This is then discussed with parents and caregivers to help the child overcome issues they may be experiencing.


To enquire about psychotherapy services please call: 09 846 9776

or email: