Children and Teens


Therapy for Teens & Kids In-Person and Telehealth

There’s no “right” way to go about parenting, but you might still be worried about doing it wrong. You’re not alone.

You don’t want to repeat the mistakes your parents made, but you also don’t know what else to do. It feels like just when you’re getting your footing in one stage of parenting, things are moving on to the next. Maybe you’re having a hard time understanding your child’s behavior, unable to connect and communicate with them the way you wish you could.

Sometimes, it seems like you’re the only one who sees the behaviors that make you worry, and when you try to tell other people it feels like they don’t really believe you. Trying to support them—even though you don’t know why they’re acting this way—along with your already-mile-long to-do list has started to feel like too much.

Let us assure you that the feelings of overwhelm and frustration you’re having are completely valid. The fact that you’re here means you already have your child’s best interests at heart. We want to do whatever we can to help them (and you) feel better and grow into the future with confidence.


  • Struggling to keep up or stay engaged in school

  • Affected by changes in the family unit—like divorce or new siblings

  • Struggling with challenges related to being adopted

  • Having fights with siblings or friends

  • Acting “moody”, apathetic about friends or hobbies, or isolating themselves

  • Often seeming irritated or like they’re about to cry

  • Impacted by a traumatic event—like loss of a family member or an assault

  • Nervous, worried, anxious, or stressed

  • Stuck in a loop or worsening behavior after an illness- see PANS/PANDAS page for more details

Being a parent is hard. Being a kid is hard, too.

We create a safe space to help both of you overcome obstacles, build resilience, and realize the full potential of your relationship.

As a parent, there’s always the worry that you’ll be judged or shamed for the way you raise your kids. We want you to know you’ll never receive any judgment or shaming from us—we’re here to lift you and your child or teen up, not tear you down.

The truth of being a kid of any age is that you only have so much power to make change in your life. Schedules, meals, and expectations are all set for you. That, plus the demands of the ever-changing world they’re growing up in, can sometimes feel a bit suffocating and lead to attempts to feel in control in other ways. Your therapist’s role is to help your child or teen become aware of how their behavior affects others and bridge the gap between what brings them to therapy and what their goals are.

At the beginning of this work, your therapist will spend time connecting and building a rapport with your child or teen. Establishing this trust is crucial for making progress, so their privacy will be honored unless something is directly relevant to you or a safety concern. That being said, parent involvement is an extremely important part of the process, so you will be included in some capacity, preferably in the beginning of every session—we ask that you keep an open mind so everyone can reap the benefits of this work.

Your therapist will work with both of you to understand what’s been going on and what each of you wants to see change. Then, they’ll use the strengths your child already has as a foundation upon which to build new skills.

As a play therapist, Sara Rodriguez, LCSW-C uses creative techniques such as role-playing, therapeutic games and skill building activities to teach children how to handle challenges in their life. As parents, you can expect to be an important part of the counseling process. Each session will begin with a family segment to hear your concerns and update you on progress.

Ages Served:

I am uniquely trained and experienced in providing therapy for infants, toddlers and elementary-aged children, ages 2-17.

Issues addressed:pic of children.for website.

  •  ADHD- coaching and non-medicinal treatment via Brain Integration Therapy
  • Adoption (see detail page)**
  • Adjustment- divorce and other
  • Anxiety
  • Behavior
  • Conflict resolution and communication
  • Depression
  • Grief and loss
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Sleep
  • Trauma

For our littles, let’s answer the question, “What is play therapy?”
For children, “toys are their words and play is their language” (Landreth, 2002). I will tell a story that Amy Wickstrom, therapist, uses to explain the concept. Imagine “children who witnessed 9/11 were immediately placed into a child-friendly, safe environment with therapists in order to process what they had seen. Many toys were provided, with the exception of planes, which the adults believed would re-traumatize them. However, when the play therapists arrived, the children were using their hands and other toys to pretend planes were flying through the air and crashing into things. The play therapists were not surprised and explained to the adults that children use toys and play to process experiences and play out what they have experienced” (Lowenstein, Liana. “Six Creative Ways to Explain Play Therapy to Parents”

As a play therapist, I use a combination of “directive” and “non-directive” play therapy. This means that there will be times that the child is able to choose how he/she would like to process their feelings or experiences and other times when I will lead them to deal with a certain issue that is relevant to their symptoms or concerns. Your child will likely learn various coping skills in order to better deal with life and its challenges.

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