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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

10 Tips For Finding a Good Attachment Therapist

1. Does the therapist understand and have experience with children who have attachment disorder? Not just book knowledge, actual experience.
2. Does he/she allow you to be in the room during the therapy session, does he/she encourage you to participate in therapy?
3. How many years has he/she been a therapist, what is his/her success rate with attachment disorder children?
4. Does he/she believe and support you as the parent or does he/she take what the child says at face value
5. Does the therapist invite you as parents into the office prior to the first appointment with your child to go over the child's history and discuss problem area's and any trauma the child has experienced.
6. Is your therapist on call for emergencies or can you reach him/her when needed. Does he/she take your concerns seriously when you call
7.Does the therapist understand that the child needs to form a bond with mom and if the child is "attaching" to the therapist something needs to change.
8. Is your therapist willing to tell you when he/she is out of his/her league?
9. Is the therapist able to try different modes of therapy if one form is not helping. Not all children with attachment disorder respond to a therapist who is eternally loving and empathetic. The child needs to learn that his/her actions have consequences.
10. Is the therapist able to smell manipulation/triangulation when confronted with it.

These are tips we learned from the many therapists we visited while looking for help for our children. One therapist had no experience with AD (attachment disorder) but her boss studied it. That isn't good enough. Our child blind sided her so badly she didn't even know anything was going on. One therapist dressed in black from head to toe and had wildly died hair, this did not resonate well with the child. Another one had the child sit with him alone for 45 minutes then I came in and we sat and all talked together for 15 min. That didn't work either. One child stuffed toys in his pocket and brought them home. That same day the therapist was telling him what a good job he was doing. You know your child better than anyone and usually you intuitively know if a therapist is a good fit or not. Go with what your heart is telling you. John H. told us that mom and dad know the child best and they must advocate for that child. Someone who see's the child for one hour a week cannot see what you see when you are with them 24/7. We so appreciated him telling us that as we were told many negative things about our parenting at that time and we truly did/do care for Braden but sometimes what is right is not easy.
   Someone told Dean that sometimes what we as humans view as a failure is not a failure in God's eye's. Sometimes having us humans "fail" is part of His redemption plan for others. That was very thought provoking but led me to once more remind myself that Dean and I need to follow God's leading and not worry over the what if's. If we are called to cross the bridge of "what if" God will be there and He will lead us across.
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