Children, adolescence and family psychology

Empowering families

They say it takes a village to raise a child … and they’re not wrong. From conception and pregnancy, right through to post-natal and parenting at all ages, we have the professional and personal experience to support you.

Support when starting a family

Creating a family is an exciting time for many, but it can also be the source of anxiety, depression, and other mental challenges. Unfortunately, the mental challenges can impact the body physically as well. At Clinical Psychology Australia, we provide antenatal and perinatal support to couples and individuals starting a family, from conception right through to postpartum (and beyond).

Where we can help

  • Infertility 
  • Mental health impacts on conception 
  • Miscarriage and loss
  • Same sex conception 
  • Single mother conception 
  • Unplanned pregnancy 
  • Preparing for parenthood
  • Adjusting to parenthood 
  • Birth trauma 
  • Premature birth 
  • Bonding to your baby 
  • Understanding your infant 
  • Fostering emotional development 
  • Adjusting to the new phase in your relationship as a couple

Development through the life stages

Parenting is one of the most rewarding roles you can have, but it doesn’t come without its challenges. At Clinical Psychology Australia, we encourage parents to be open and honest about their experiences in an effort to normalise the highs and lows of parenthood. 

From infancy to adolescence, our children are constantly evolving and exposed to different scenarios. It’s okay to feel unsure about how to parent these different behaviours as they grow up. In fact, childhood provides a unique opportunity to instil good self-beliefs, so the best thing you can do as a parent is seek support to give your child the best opportunity to live a healthy and happy life, both mentally and physically. 

Whether they are an infant or in their late teens, the experienced team at Clinical Psychology Australia are here to help. We draw on our experience as parents to provide a supportive and empathetic environment that allows parents and children to feel comfortable in expressing themselves freely, without judgement from any party. 

Although it may be the child’s behaviour that prompted the notion to seek help from a psychologist, we don’t work to “fix” the child. Rather, we examine the setting in which the child is present and work to adjust it to better support and suit their needs, regardless of their age.

Reasons to see a psychologist

As parents, we always want the best for our children, but some days that feels harder to provide than others … and that’s totally normal. There are many reasons that a parent may seek the support of a psychologist to help them better support their child. Below are some of the common characteristics to look for in your child to know if support from a psychologist is the right option:

Expand to see reasons

  • Challenging behaviours
  • Refusal to go to bed 
  • Refusal to go to school 
  • Feels like you and your child are always in conflict or yelling at each other 
  • They’re not engaging in activities 
  • Fussy eating 
  • Toileting issues, such as bed wetting, constipation and leakage 
  • Sleep difficulties 
  • Overreactive 
  • Difficulties with friends 
  • Anxious or nervous about sleepovers at friend’s homes or school camps 
  • Public tantrums 
  • Technology addiction

What to expect

Before you visit

We ask you to complete a range of screening assessments online prior to your first appointment. This is so we can get a better understanding of you and your reasons for visiting prior to meeting you.

First appointment

We’ll spend about an hour to an hour and a half chatting to the parents about who they are and what they would like to get out of their experience with Clinical Psychology Australia, explore their reasons for being here, discuss their attitudes towards parenting, understand any predisposing factors as well as any biological and medical conditions that may impact their mental wellbeing, and discuss what has kept them going to this point before seeking help. 

Second appointment

we’ll invite the child or adolescent to meet with the psychologist on the second appointment and discuss similar topics as we did with the parents. It is up to the child or adolescent if they would like their parent present.

Next steps

After the first two sessions, we diagnose and create a personalised treatment plan so both the child and parents know what to expect.

Between sessions

We can facilitate and guide the journey to improved mental wellbeing, but positive change depends on the client’s commitment outside of each session. We may ask you to complete thought diaries, practice relational skills, monitor emotional states, challenge unhelpful thinking patterns, practice sleep hygiene, monitor your diet, or implement relaxation and mindfulness strategies.

Supporting children through a divorce or separation

Sometimes romantic relationships break down, and that’s okay. Whether its infancy, childhood or adolescence, the examples witnessed by our children form the basis for their future relationships. When going through a separation or divorce, it’s important that both parents still fulfil their roles of creating a loving and support environment, while also demonstrating good relationship behaviours. At Clinical Psychology Australia, we support adults to successfully co-parent, ensuring the children are kept out of the ‘fight zone.’

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