16- The Child or Children
The Role of the Provider – The Child or Children
Hi. Welcome to part sixteen of the Supervised Visitation Monitor Training, brought to you by Family & Children’s Counseling Services, Inc.
In this segment, we will explore the experience of Supervised Visitation from the eyes of the children.
You will probably work with a variety of ages from newborn to 17- and you will encounter differing levels of energy, attitude and curiosity about what is happening. Children will have a variety of mixed emotions- and children from the same family may have different reactions.
If the child is old enough to understand, you must have an Interview and Orientation with the them as well. We will discuss the Child Interview and Orientation in a later segment.
For now, let’s talk about understanding the various possible responses from children and ways to help them feel understood, cared for and safe. Of course, we can’t possibly know all the different responses. These are going to vary depending upon each child’s temperament, backstory, support system, personal coping skills and other factors.
The way we can best support a child is to be empathetic without rescuing. We can allow them to feel what they feel and acknowledge the validity of their feelings. It might look like, “You look excited to see your Mom!” or “It’s hard to say good-bye.” Sometimes this is called mirroring or reflecting.
In any event, we should never correct the Child. They have every right to feel sad, mad, happy, excited, nervous, or whatever. We are the safe adult that allows that to happen without judgement.
Now, behavior is another story. We must step in if we notice something is getting out of control. A Child may become distressed, aggressive, or otherwise out-of-control. If the Visiting Parent is not able to manage the behavior, we will need to intervene. First with a suggestion or redirection, then by terminating the visit.
Of course, we will document everything by using neutral language and not judgements or opinions.
Thank you for watching. I’ll see you again at the next video, Staggering Parent Arrivals and Departures.
Family & Children’s Counseling Services, Inc. is a California LMFT Corporation owned and directed by Melinda Haynes, MA, LMFT 102308.
You can find FCCS online at www.HealPlayLove.org.
You can find Melinda’s therapy channel, Can We Talk?, at https://www.youtube.com/canwetalk