Therapy and counselling for children and young people

As a parent myself, I know what it feels like to want to do the best your child.
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Working with children and young people

Supporting young people and children is close to my heart. I’ve worked with children, young people and families in a variety of settings throughout my life – from being a volunteer at a nursery in New York when I was a teenager, to helping run holiday and after school clubs, managing a family centre, working in children’s homes, managing projects for young homeless people, and training volunteers to work as mentors for young people at risk.

I also have considerable experience working with parents-to-be and new parents as a human givens psychotherapist, doula and maternity nurse, with over 10 years’ experience working in maternal health issues, such as fertility, miscarriage and loss, postnatal depression, anxiety and birth trauma. 

How to help our children and young people thrive in a modern world

Childhood is a crucial developmental stage as it prepares us for adult life. But we also know that many of the mental health challenges we face in adulthood are rooted in our childhood experiences.

It’s therefore paramount that we do our best – as parents, teachers, and the wider community – to support children and young people on their journey to adulthood.

The experiences we encounter through childhood – whether pleasant, difficult or traumatic – lay down patterns in our brains, which will affect how we perceive the world, and interpret and react to future experiences as an adult.

Unfortunately, research shows that the UK performs poorly in some international league tables of children’s wellbeing, with children and young people in the UK presenting with more depression, anxiety, addiction, self-harm and behavioural issues.

How I can help your child

The Human Givens framework for mental and physical wellbeing provides us with the understanding that if our emotional needs are met well and are in balance, and we use our resources appropriately, we’ll experience healthy emotional and physical wellbeing. And this, of course, is as true for our children and teenagers as it is for ourselves.

This understanding provides the basis for my work with children and young people. I’ll endeavour to support your child or teenager, find ways to meet their emotional needs, and use their resources well, in an age and developmentally appropriate way.

If our emotional needs are met well enough and are in balance, and we use our resources well, we’ll experience healthy emotional and physical wellbeing.

Using the HG human givens framework and its resources, I’ll endeavour to support your child or teenager and meet their emotional needs in an age appropriate and developmentally appropriate way.

This may involve:

  • Helping children and young people to calm down
  • Teaching them breathing and relaxation techniques so they’re able to self-regulate
  • Using psychoeducation to teach them about their feelings, emotions and how their brain works
  • Teaching them about their emotional needs, using mindfulness techniques to help them cope and bring them into the present moment
  • Finding strategies and tools to help them moving forward

It’s my hope that teaching these skills, gaining an understanding, feeling listened to and valued, will help them to grow in confidence, give them an understanding around their mental wellbeing, as well as giving them tools and techniques that they can take with them as they move forward through life.

Christina Johnson The Human Givens Therapist wearing a green top

Why choose me as your child’s therapist

I work creatively with children and young people. This may involve colouring books, modelling materials, storytelling and songs.

Encouraging creativity in children and young people can help to advance cognitive skills, stimulating the imagination and providing a channel for expression. It teaches young people to solve problems using their imagination to make interpretations and strengthen understanding.

I often work with modelling clay, snakes and ladders, marbles, dominoes, painting and drawing, puppets – I offer whatever the child or young person would like to engage in, to build on their resources, skills and interests. It also helps encourage new areas of exploration.

I’m passionate about ensuring all children and young people get the support they need and deserve, to enable them to have a secure base, upon which they can move forward and build on their success in life.

How a human givens therapist can help your child

Reduce anxiety

  • Reduce excessive worry and fear about everyday events and activities, including things like school performances, family issues and natural disasters
  • Help children with separation anxiety, who refuse to go to school or other places without their parents
  • Help children who have an intense fear of social situations and may avoid socialising with others
  • Help children with specific phobias, such as an intense fear of spiders, animals, heights or flying
  • Help children with OCD who have unwanted thoughts or obsessions that cause anxiety. They may perform repetitive behaviours or compulsions to reduce their anxiety

Breaking the cycle of depression

  • Perhaps brought on by life events like someone dying, moving school, transitions within the family or other big changes
  • Perhaps brought on by physical health problems
  • Experiencing physical, sexual or psychological abuse or neglect, witnessing violence or a traumatic event

Resolving trauma

  • Accidents such as car crashes or falls
  • Bullying or cyber-bullying
  • Chaos or disfunction in the home, such as domestic violence, substance abuse or parental mental illness or incarceration
  • Natural disasters or terrorism
  • Physical, sexual or emotional abuse

Managing anger

  • Seeing other family members arguing or being angry with each other
  • Friendship problems or bullying
  • Struggling with schoolwork or exams
  • Feeling very stressed, anxious or fearful about something
  • Coping with hormone changes during puberty

Stop addictive behaviour

the human givens approach can help your child or young person free themselves from all forms of addiction, such as:

  • Drugs and alcohol
  • Addiction to screens
  • Gaming
  • TV
  • Shopping
  • Food

Helping to improve relationships

  • Coping with blended families
  • Coping with step brothers and sisters
  • Coping with additions to the family
  • Helping children make friends and socialise
  • Improve attendance at school or college


Working with you and your child

I offer a free, 15-minute consultation by phone or on Zoom, so I can meet you and your child or teenager, if they would like to join us. This is an opportunity for you to ask any questions, discuss your concerns, and find a way forward.

If you’d like to go ahead, you can book an initial appointment by clicking the button below.

I’m happy to see you both, or if it’s an older child, they may feel comfortable to come along alone.

There’s flexibility in meeting you, your child and both of you together during our sessions. It may be that I see you individually or together, depending on how you wish to work, the issues you’re bringing to counselling, and the preference of your child or young person.