In Parent Child Psychotherapy we generally work with one parent and one child at a time and use a model called VPT (the Vital Parenting Tasks). Click here to read more about the VPT. This type of therapy can be useful where we need to focus more on the parent-child relationship rather than working alone with a child. It is also offered when we have been working with an adult who wishes to improve the quality or their relationship with their child and/or their parenting skills. Whatever we do though, in Parent Child Psychotherapy, we are always child focused.
Importantly our aim is not to be a "better parent" but to make ourselves, as therapists, redundant as soon as possible so that you and your family can enjoy a healthy and happy family life, without the need for long term psychotherapy (although that may be necessary depending on the circumstances).
Where possible and appropriate, we find that working with parents and children together can be the best way forward. It can move the therapy process along quicker and it can help the child not to feel as if there is something wrong with them or that just they are to blame for what might be going wrong.
Judgement is never made about parenting ability. Instead, new ways of relating, communicating and being together can be thought about, explored, tried and tested and both parent and child is given a voice.
Often, parent-child treatment is relatively short and it is sometimes done in the family home and/or in partnership with school or other professionals. Sometimes, to improve the work further, we bring in a colleague and we work intensively together for a short period of time.