“It’s not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world. It’s our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.” – L.R Knost
What is Group Therapy?
Group therapy is often beneficial to children by providing support from other children going through similar situations. Group therapy provides a comprehensive therapeutic intervention process which is more cost-effective for parents.
Group therapy focuses on “change”. Change in attitudes, beliefs, emotions and/or behaviours of members. In the group, members are relieved to discover they are not alone-their experiences, problems or fears are not unique or isolated. Group members are able to receive support, consider alternatives, challenge thoughts and develop new, more effective coping skills to ease their struggles and improve the quality of their lives.
Groups generally meet weekly for an hour for a specified number of sessions. Family members or other support persons may be asked to participate in some of the sessions.
Children who suffer from one or more of the following issues will benefit from group therapy:
- Social isolation/shyness
- Lack of social skills
- Bullying/peer rejection
- Anger management
- Lack of healthy identity and self-esteem
- Struggling with adjustment to new environments
The Benefits of Group Therapy:
Children mostly emerge from a positive group experience with new interpersonal and social skills and abilities. They speak up in class, resist negative peer pressure and stand-up for themselves. Group work also helps children increase their capacity for self-expression and emotional assertiveness. As their social insecurities begin to dissolve, they feel comfortable talking to peers or adults.
Group therapy benefits include the development and establishment of:
- Social Confidence
- Better Communication Skills
- Positive Peer Relationships
- Improved Relationships
- Reduced Stress
Group sessions give children a place to incorporate new ways of relating and developing better social behaviours. As they build confidence and develop more confidence for speaking in groups, they become more comfortable asserting themselves in social situations in their daily life.
Many children have difficulty communicating their emotions and tend to keep their feelings to themselves or isolate themselves. In group therapy, children are given the rare opportunity to explore their feelings and fears with other children. As they develop better communication skills, they experience a surge in confidence.
When children are in the company of peers who are also struggling to improve themselves and develop healthier ways of relating, they don’t feel so alone. Each week, group members cheer and celebrate each other’s victories. This positive environment provides children with the confidence they need to overcome self-doubts and take more social initiative.
Isolated children are more likely to suffer from anxiety andThese children withdraw from peers in an effort to limited their fears and insecurities. Group sessions offer children a chance to develop better quality peer relationships. Children trapped in poor relationships at school are given a chance to start again and become part of a peer community off of school grounds that appreciates and values them.
Children often feel humiliated by social and academic pressures. Group work provides a relief from stress by providing them with an opportunity to unburden themselves with peers who understand them. They learn to keep difficulties in perspective and develop a healthy sense of self.
Dr Fourie delivers group work therapy relating to various child-related problems such as:
• Social skills
• Adjustment to new experiences and environments (e.g. Support for the grade 1 pupil)
• Peer relationships
• Conflict management
• Divorce related problems
Dr Fourie delivers parenting workshops such as:
• Healthy child-parent interaction and communication
• Sibling rivalry
• Basic parenting skill training (Positive parenting course)
• Parental guidance during divorce or separation
• Strategies to understanding your child and manage behaviour accordingly
A screening and a feedback session with parents (and or child) will be included as part of the group therapy process.
Schedule of group work therapy groups for 2020 coming soon!
Request an appointment for Group therapy by completing the request form below.