A parent/child session (sometimes called a dyad) is when a parent and child work together in the same art therapy session. This is a great way of working with very young children, or with families who are wishing to strengthen or repair attachment. My favorite thing about parent/child sessions is that both parent and child receive the benefits of therapy! There are lots of different reasons that a family may choose to do parent/child sessions. First, a parent may have been separated from a child and need to re-connect. This is useful for families where either the parent or child is dealing with a prolonged illness or medical condition. Or maybe a parent has been struggling with depression, anxiety, substance abuse, trauma, or other mental health concerns that has impacted their relationship with their child. Or maybe a family has experienced separation because of divorce, family breakdown, or the loss of custody of children. Parent/child sessions are also useful for when a relationship needs to be built, like when a child has been added to a family through fostering or adoption. Finally, parent/child sessions can be used for healing in a family that has experienced trauma. Examples of trauma that might affect families could be: domestic violence, crime, fire or natural disaster, acts of war or terrorism, the death or loss of a loved one, or a car accident. Working together under the supervision of the art therapist can help parents and children re-establish feelings of safety and get things feeling ‘back to normal’.