Counselling for children
Counselling and other advice services can help children talk things through and support them without making them feel judged, all in confidence (unless they disclose that their personal safety is at risk).
You may also find it useful to discover more about the option of family counselling.
Questions parents and carers may have
At times children, young people and families may need extra support if they are going through a difficult time. Counselling gives children a space to talk and play through whatever is on their mind. It can be a difficult decision to seek emotional support for a child. Counselling is a non-judgemental and confidential space to explore how a child is thinking and feeling about things.
No. We understand that many children (and adults) find it hard to talk about their feelings. Our child counsellors are professionally trained to use many creative activities to help children express themselves. This can be talking, but can also be using play, art and writing, alongside other techniques. The sessions take place in a child-friendly room with a selection of toys and games available. Children can play freely with whatever they choose and may talk and say as much or as little as they want to.
Some children will be happy to come for counselling, and others won’t want to! How you explain it to your child will depend on the age of your child and the specific difficulties they are going through. We can talk further with you about this on the phone.
Sessions are 50 minutes long. Counselling can be short-, medium- or long-term. The length will be decided between you and the counsellor and will depend on the needs of your child and resources available.
Once your child has settled into counselling, we would encourage parents/carers to wait in the waiting room. We like parents to show an interest in their child’s counselling, but not press them into talking about it if they don’t want to. This can be difficult for parents, as they may feel anxious about what has been talked about in the session. Your child’s counsellor may be able to provide you with feedback if this seems to be in the best interests of the child, and your child is happy for this to happen.
Questions children may have
Maybe your parent or carer has suggested you have some counselling. That can be a scary thought and we want to try and answer some of the questions you might have here to make it a little less scary!
Counselling is an opportunity to talk about difficult feelings or experiences to someone who will listen to you. Counsellors help children with worries and other problems and may be able to help you to make sense of some of your thoughts and feelings. It will happen in a friendly room at Cogwheel Counselling. In the room there are various toys and arts and crafts that you can use to help you express how you feel.
Maybe things are tough at home or school or you are feeling sad or unhappy. You may be struggling with a specific issue or feeling confused, worried, muddled or unsure about your situation. Many different people come to counselling – children, teenagers and adults – and it is a space to think about how you feel and to help you with these feelings.
Each session will last about 50 minutes (just under an hour). The first time you meet with your counsellor, he or she will be able to give you an idea as to how many times you will come to Cogwheel Counselling. Once you have begun counselling, you will see the same counsellor each week.
You can tell others you are coming to Cogwheel Counselling – it is not a secret – but you don’t have to.
You can talk about anything you want to when you come to Cogwheel Counselling. There is nothing you should or shouldn’t talk about, and nothing too big or small to talk about. Our counsellors will not be judging you or your family.
Counselling can be talking but can also be playing, drawing, writing, storytelling or other ways of expressing how you feel. The counselling rooms at Cogwheel Counselling have puppets, sand, clay, paint and other art materials which you can use in your counselling sessions.
Cogwheel Counselling Service Agreement (CYP Counselling)
We hope that your child or young person’s experience at Cogwheel will be positive and beneficial.
Please download, print and sign this document on behalf of your child or young person (CYP).