Does my child need a child psychologist?...is he/she crazy?
Many parents have concerns about the efficacy and the necessity of a visit in a “child psychologist”*. Nevertheless, over the past years the stigma of mental health has significantly receded and the collaboration between the parents with the psychologists has contributed significantly in the prevention and the overcoming of many difficulties.
The fact that you refer to a “child psychologist” doesn’t necessarily mean that your child has “serious mental problems”, that he/she is “crazy”, that he/she will start psychotherapy in a weekly base for ever or that you are inefficient as parents. On the contrary, through this procedure you will be able to answer your questions, be properly informed and find new strategies that will help you improve your everyday life.
The first visit (maybe the second one as well) involves the parents (or the parent that is available). During the first visit basic information about the development of the child and the family history are obtained and the parents express their concerns. Then, the psychologist and the parents discuss and make decisions about the progression of the collaboration, that is, whether there will be sessions with the child or with the parents, the goal of the therapy and the frequency of the sessions.
In the collaboration with the psychologist you can express any concerns you may have about the development and the upbringing of your children, your personal difficulties, your concerns about specific issues or the management of a crisis in your family (like grief, a divorce or moving house). In addition, you can get information about normal and deviant development and get some guidance that can contribute to the prevention of more serious emotional disorders or behavioral problems. If a difficulty – problem already exists, then psychotherapy is provided, which at younger ages includes means such as play time or painting, later even therapeutic electronic games, while in adolescence it is more similar to adults speech therapy. At the same time the parents are informed about the progression of the therapy and learn more functional strategies to get on with their children. In some cases family or couple therapy may be suggested.
* The term child psychologist is used to describe the psychologist that specializes in the particular issues of child development. The scientific brunch of psychology doesn’t accept this term since it is not a recognized field of specialization. It is possible that it has been established by analogy with the terms psychiatrist and child psychiatrist which are two recognized medical specialties. The “child psychologist” in order to fulfill the criteria for this title must have specialized studies in child and adolescent psychopathology which is provided on a postgraduate level.
She has specialized in Cognitive Behavioral Psychotherapy at the Hellenic Association of Behavioral Research which is accredited by the European Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (EABCT).
Furthermore, she has attended specialist seminars on Family Therapy, Parent Counseling and Eating Disorders.
She is licensed to practice psychology as a specialist in School/Educational Psychology (Ref. No.: 359).