Rachel Thomas – Child and Adolescent psychodynamic psychotherapist ( BPC registered) – Children and young people aged 4 yrs – 25 yrs, and their parents.
WHO IS IT FOR?
My psychotherapy work involves children and young people with a range of different issues and needs, including anxiety, depression, and trauma such as abuse, bereavement or separation/divorce. I also work with children who have had a diagnosis of being on the autistic spectrum (ASC) or ADHD.
WHAT IS PSYCHODYNAMIC THERAPY?
This is a broad term for psychotherapy that explores the dynamic between people and the internal and external worlds experienced by all of us, consciously and unconsciously.
Children will often express their inner struggles in confusing and distressing ways: either by withdrawing into themselves, or by acting out in angry or aggressive ways. The child might experience overwhelming feelings or destructive thoughts that they are not able to understand or communicate. This can be challenging for those around the child, as well as for the child themselves.
The source of these difficult feelings might be a life event such as loss, a developmental challenge such as separation, or a difficulty with making sense of the world around them. Psychodynamic psychotherapy, which gives the child a space in which to explore how they see the world with a skilled observer and listener, has been shown to help the child and those around them make sense of what is going on. Through this greater understanding everyone involved is able to better meet the needs of the child, and the child becomes, in time, equipped with the resources they need to meet the challenges.
I work with children from the age of 4 years with a wide range of issues in an age-appropriate way. The room has a selection of toys and creative materials for the child to engage with, and it is often through the child’s play that I and the child begin to understand what is preoccupying them. Through our therapeutic relationship we can begin to find the language to help the child make sense of what is going on in their inner world.
My work with adolescents and young adults tends to be more talking-based, although I use a range of creative approaches, including art materials. I am offering a thinking space where I hope to be alongside young people helping them to make sense of themselves and the world around them.
Sessions usually last 50 minutes, although they may be shorter for younger children.
IN PARTNERSHIP WITH PARENTS
As children and young people change, those around them most often also need to make adjustments. I work in partnership with parents and carers, and will have regular review sessions with them to explore how they can best support their child and each other. Sometimes it may be appropriate to see the child with one or both parents or carers. When my client is over 16, review sessions with parents are less frequent, and are negotiated with my client.
I am also happy to work with the schools attended by my clients, if requested.
MA Psychological Therapies (Tavistock and Portman)
PGCert Systemic Psychotherapy
As a British Psychoanalytic Council (BPC) registered psychodynamic psychotherapist I am committed to my own on-going Career and Professional Development (CPD) and to the Ethical code of my professional body. I have an up-to-date CRB and I am a trained Safeguarding Lead.
I have 28 years of experience of working with children and young people, within schools as a teacher and in drama/music facilitation before training as a psychotherapist. My approach is essentially psychodynamic but also draws on Systemic Family Therapy.
I offer an initial free telephone consultation.
After that sessions with children/adolescents are £65
Consultations with parents are £70.
I offer reduced rates for those on a low income.
I have a room in the centre of Cheltenham and also work at OwnZone in the middle of Stroud.