Face-to-Face in Hondo, Texas
Online anywhere in Texas
Every day it seems you are just waiting for the volcanic explosion and meltdown of your child. You never know when it might happen, but you know it will occur when you are in a hurry or have something important to do. You feel lost and at your wit's end.
Throw in the sibling conflicts and you are left feeling helpless, overwhelmed, and exhausted. All someone must do is look wrong at someone and the meltdown begins. The bickering never ends. As soon as they are together it begins over the most stupid stuff. Getting into the car from school can turn into World War III with pinching and poking one another.
You're frustrated with yourself because you told yourself “I will not be parenting my children like my parents did me." You watch your child struggle with their emotions and are unable to help because you also struggle with yours. You continue to find yourself constantly fighting and bargaining for better behavior from both yourself and your child. Due to the cyclical nature, hopelessness mounts and it is one crisis after another.
I’m Tammy Kothe-Ramsey, M.A., LPC and I help parents who are struggling with their 3-to-12-year old’s emotions and behaviors that create disorganized and chaotic environments to gain an understanding behind the actions. Together we will create goals that turn behavior and the parenting relationships into healthy outcomes.
My approach to child therapy uses a playful atmosphere where we have fun, laughter, and silliness engaging in play-based therapy. In this type of atmosphere the brain is open to learning and rewiring. This may be using toys, sand, books, music, art, and games. Marriage and family counseling are part of the process at times. Parents and guardians are encouraged to join in the fun, laughter, and silliness as part of family counseling. When counseling works, you'll gain a better understanding of your child's emotions, learn to respond rather than to react, discover ways to work through difficult feelings, develop communication and conflict management skills that can lessen daily parenting struggles all with play-based therapy. You may even learn something about yourself along the way.
If you are ready to effectively help your child with their emotions with play therapy, contact me for a FREE 15-minute consultation to regain control, reduce disorganization, and parenting chaos in your life. My specialties include anxiety, school problems, ADHD, oppositional defiance, meltdowns, tantrums, parenting differences, anger management, divorce, and grief.
Children naturally have ups and downs. Sometimes these get attributed as "growing pains" and can often get overlooked. This affects how children interact with family and friends. They do poorly in school. They lose interest in hobbies, sports, and other activities. Often times anxiety accompanies depression causing fear, panic, or worry about everyday situations. Depression affects approximately 3% while anxiety affects approximately 7% of children ages 3 - 17. When a child is feeling depressed, some behaviors can include: new or worse behavioral problems, changes in eating or sleeping habits, low energy levels, irritability and mood swings. Behaviors for anxiety include: worrying about things in excess (the future, what if's, loved ones dying, etc.), refusal of going to school or other activities, not wanting to leave a parent, physical aches and pains that do not have a medical explanation. If left untreated, they may have suicidal thoughts or attempts. Parents should look for indications of suicidal behavior when there is social isolation, increased risk taking, self-destructive behaviors or self-injury, a focus on death and dying, giving possessions away, hopelessness, or the talk of suicide.
Play therapy can help children work through their feelings that may be contributing to their depression and anxiety. Sandtray therapy can assist in understanding the behaviors, emotions, and ideas that contribute but are not language accessible. A family counselor will assist family members to understand more about what the child is experiencing, things they do that help or unintentionally to hinder, and finding ways to cope themselves.
Many events may be considered traumatic for a child. Whenever the response to the event is too overwhelming for the child's ability to cope with their feelings of helplessness, trauma is said to occur. Only the big events such as natural disasters, abuse, etc. are usually considered traumatic. However, it is not the event that needs our attention, but rather the ability of the child to cope. No matter how parents work to keep children safe, dangerous events still happen. These can be within the family or outside. Emotional and physical reactions can persist long after safety has been re-established. Among these reactions may be fear, terror, helplessness, heart pounding, a loss of control of bladder or bowels. Depending on the duration of symptoms, a PTSD diagnosis can result. Symptoms of PTSD may include: Avoiding or going out of your way to avoid things, being vigilant (always on alert and scanning for danger), being on edge or anxious, having negative thoughts and feelings, reliving or re-experiencing the trauma in dreams or flashbacks. Children may act out the event when playing, have clinging behaviors, or have regressive behaviors reverting back to a younger age (bed wetting, soiling clothes, being mute, etc.).
Play therapy can help make sense of these events and allow for healing. Sandtray can regulate the nervous system where trauma is lodged.
Many emotions present as anger. There is something underneath the surface that fuels it. Much like an iceberg we only see the tip which is the actions of anger. Counseling can help a child to become aware of their triggers (causes) and the reasons they are triggered. Counseling also creates awareness for warning signals, physiological actions that occur when becoming angry (rapid heart beat, shallow and rapid breathing, etc.).
Play therapy with games (both discussing the topic of anger and the game itself) can lend experiential ways of dealing with anger. Discovering calming and stress reducing skills will make anger more manageable. Making hands-on tools to use when angry is one of the children's favorite activities. We may even throw in some simple yoga techniques.
A child grieves differently than an adult. Never assume that because a child is playing and not crying that they are not grieving. They are better at switching off the water works that adults and yet they are dealing with their grief in their own way. A child may feel depressed, anxious, and angry even at the person who died. They may regress to younger behaviors depending on their age. They may hold in their feelings in fear of upsetting the adult. They may worry that someone else close to them will die and no one will be there to care for them.
Counseling offers a safe space to explore their feelings and let them out. Even if they do not have words to express, play therapy, sandtray therapy, and art therapy allow the child to express without having to speak.
Families often lack conflict management skills and communication to resolve problems. They often react in ways that perpetuate issues. Divorce, death of a loved one, moving, bullying, school related issues, etc., are some possible conflict issues.
Participating in family counseling can assist in building better relationships among all members enhancing communication, negotiation, and cooperation. Play therapy provides space for young children to work through their problems. It also facilitates better relationships between family members. Art therapy interventions allow for self expressions in a non-verbal way. Parenting support is offered by examining parental patterns that may be contributing unintentionally to undesired behaviors.
New to TKR Counseling Services? This is where you begin. Your initial intake provides insight of the experienced issues and a background history. A customized treatment plan will be created to address specific issues.
1.25 hours $120
During sessions, you can explore your emotions in a safe environment and engage in evidence-based interventions to guide you through your feelings and assist in the healing process.
45 minutes - 1 hour $100 *
*Sessions are booked through your private portal link assigned after intake.
During sessions the focus will be to guide the family / couple through education, intervention techniques, conversation, and role play. You will gain techniques to utilize at home when conflict arises.
50 minutes - 1 hour $110*
*Sessions are booked through your private portal link assigned after intake.
Engage in a one-on-one personal approach, a therapeutic atmosphere, and hands-on interventions with your therapist.
Not ready to meet face-to-face? Unable to leave work? Running late and will miss your appointment? Not feeling well but still need your session? Can't make it to or don't live near Hondo, TX? No problem, virtual sessions are available from anywhere within the state of TEXAS.
The health of you and your therapist is important. If you have a fever, body aches, or chills in the last 72 hours, you need to cancel, reschedule, or move your appointment to a virtual session. DO NOT COME TO THE OFFICE OR WAITING ROOM IF YOU ARE ILL.
Our office is only open to our appointments. THE WAITING AREA IS CLOSED. Upon arrival, text your therapist. They will notify you when to come to the door. If you are not being seen, you are asked to wait in your car. PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE. You will be notified when it is time to pick up your child. Offices are sanitized in between clients.