Kids just have a harder time figuring out their feelings. At different stages of development, kids may have more or less language with which to describe and report complex emotions, more or less context with which to understand how those emotions work. Kids figure out their feelings through play, through art, through building a trusting relationship with a clinician who can help translate to their caregivers these crazy feelings that can seem bigger than their own small bodies. Caregivers, too, benefit from support and space to vent, because there are few things more crazy-making than parenting.

In my work with children and their families, I focus on helping kids learn tools to self-regulate and communicate their emotions, and helping caregivers take care of and have compassion for themselves as they learn to listen to what their kids are trying to say with sometimes incomprehensible behaviors.