Are You Worried Your Child May Be Depressed?

Child Depression Treatment - New York, NY - Tribeca Play Therapy

Does she no longer seem to take pleasure in activities she used to enjoy?

Does he become irritable and angry more often than he used to?

You may grow concerned as your child becomes increasingly tired or socially withdrawn.

Maybe she hasn’t seemed like her usual self lately, but you aren’t sure what has changed or how you can help.

Are you at your wits’ end as you struggle to know how to help your child?

Do you wish you could just have your happy child back? 

Many New York City Parents Struggle To Understand And Address Child Depression

Living with a child who feels depressed is not easy. Two percent of grade school children suffer from depression in the U.S., and parents often feel powerless to help their struggling child. Conflict with a co-parent can make things even more difficult and complicated. As a result, you may blame yourself for the challenges your child is facing or worry that he or she will never be happy.

However, psychotherapy with a skilled, empathetic clinician can make a huge difference in your child’s life. Child depression treatment that includes Child-Centered Play Therapy and Parenting Counseling can give you and your child the tools and techniques you need to feel happy and confident again.

Child Depression Treatment through Play Therapy in My Lower Manhattan Office Can Help Your Child Find Relief!

Depression is most often caused by a child being out of touch with his or her own emotional life. Your child’s feelings may be repressed, and he or she does not have conscious awareness of them. For example, your child may harbor angry feelings, hidden deep down, but the idea of expressing them seems scary. Depression is a common, natural mechanism that results from the mind’s attempt to repress frightening, angry feelings. Your child, however, is completely unaware of all this going on. Child depression treatment through Child-Centered Play Therapy, however, gives your child conscious awareness of his troubling emotions, allowing him to process and resolve them! 

Child Depression Treatment - New York, NY - Tribeca Play Therapy

Often, depression is related to a child’s reaction to marital conflict, such as family conflict, a separation or a divorce. Your child may be deeply affected by the tremendous loss that has happened in his life. He has experienced overwhelming emotions but has been unable to express those feelings or have them validated. As a result, your child may leave emotions covered up and unaddressed. I recognize how your child’s lack of attunement to his emotional life can cause depression, and I help him or her learn to recognize and process difficult thoughts and situations in a healthy, empowering way. 

How does Play Therapy help?

Child-Centered Play Therapy is a medical treatment that restores in your child a conscious awareness of his or her emotional life. Sessions take place in a specially designed playroom with carefully selected toys. Using a technique called tracking, I reflect back to your child every action or decision he makes and every feeling he is experiencing. As your child hears his experience echoed back, he gains a conscious awareness of what is going on and what is important to him. For example, if your child bangs with a toy hammer, I may say, “Oh you’re feeling angry, you smashed it,” allowing him to express his emotions, “Yes, I’m angry.” In this way, your child learns the priceless skill of recognizing and labeling his feelings. With his or her increased awareness, your child can more effectively manipulate, control and resolve difficult or distressing emotions. As your child’s awareness builds up with constant weekly sessions, his feelings become unblocked and begin to flow more naturally, lifting his depression and helping him feel happy and confident.

For a discussion of how Play Therapy improves a child's emotional health, click here.

Many New York City parents seek child depression treatment from a child psychologist or a play therapist!

Child Depression Treatment - New York, NY - Tribeca Play Therapy

 

During our sessions, we may identify that your child is not being given enough choice in his or her life and lacks self-determination. Blocked self-expression and impulses can result in depression. Therefore I do not direct your child in Play Therapy. He is in the driver’s seat and makes all his own decisions, and I show support and tremendous respect for the decisions he makes. This is incredibly empowering as your child thinks, “I can make my own decisions, I can control myself, I can control my life." This restoration of self-determination over the course of multiple sessions helps reduce depression and restore the enjoyment of everyday life!

For great tips on how to validate your child's feelings, click here.

Help your child through Parenting Counseling!

When considering child depression treatment, you may wish to participate in Parenting Counseling together with Play Therapy. We as parents have tremendous power to improve the emotional well-being of our children. It is amazing how "Tuning up" our parenting just a little can bring great improvement in our child’s emotional health. Learning to be more kind, gentle, flexible, tolerant, patient and humble with your child can make a huge difference in his or her depressive symptoms. With the implementation of specific, personally tailored advice, your child can find relief and experience joy and happiness again.

But, you may still have concerns about child depression treatment…

Isn’t depression caused by genetics and biology? Isn’t medication the only option for child depression treatment?

In my clinical experience, I have seen that depression is usually caused by a child born with a sensitive temperament who experiences significant environmental stressors. Changing your child’s environment through Play Therapy and Parenting techniques can be immensely healing. Medication, of you choose, can be very helpful when combined with psychotherapy, and I work closely with your child’s psychiatrist to manage the administration of meds.

Isn’t therapy expensive? I’m not sure it’s worth the money…

Investing in child depression treatment now can save you from years of challenges and costly treatment in the future. Play Therapy and Parenting Counseling address your child’s challenges when he or she is young, before the issue can develop into a more serious problem.

Nobody is going to tell me how to raise my kids!

My goal during child depression treatment is to offer you and your child the guidance, resources and support you need to find relief. I am not here to tell you how to parent or to instruct your child how he or she should behave. Instead, I work with your child to understand and validate his or her feelings. There is no one right way to parent, but Parenting Counseling can help you learn to recognize and avoid many of the pitfalls.

Your Child Can Feel Happy And Confident!

In my professional experience in New York City, I have seen many children find relief and recovery through Child-Centered Play Therapy and Parenting Counseling. 

Child Depression Treatment - New York, NY - Tribeca Play Therapy

I have been working with children for a few decades. I worked for my mother growing up at the Montessori school she owned, and that experience allowed me never to lose touch with how a child thinks and feels. I was a teacher for years before transitioning to a full-time career in mental health in N.Y.C. I have four energetic boys of my own and have faced many challenges raising them. I bring the triple vantage point of parent, teacher and psychotherapist to bear in my work, as it allows me to understand the many dimensions of children’s emotional health issues.

If you are ready to help your child find lasting recovery, or if you still have questions about child depression treatment and would like guidance from a child therapist in New York City, I invite you to call me for a free 15-minute consultation at 646-681-1707

Learn more about the challenges children and parents face by downloading one of my free reports and joining my email list.

I look forward to speaking with you!

To find out how Play Therapy helps for child ADHD, click here.