Case Summaries: Part 5

Client: Jack Independence

Also in attendance: Both Parents

Length of Therapy: Several Months

Jack was an elementary school age child who had separation anxiety and fears of completing some age appropriate life skills without the presence of his mother. The family was referred to Positive Outcomes by a teacher due to the parents request. The family was concerned that their child seemed to be developing some irrational fears and they were in touch with his needs enough to search out help before it became disruptive in all aspects of his life. They began counseling with the POI counselor and gave some background information that helped us to see some of his recent life changes. We discussed how to speak about some of these changes with him to lessen his stress. They also described some of the fears that he was having and how it was affecting family functioning. Two such fears were showering alone without anyone in the room, and going to sleep by himself. We discussed what he feared would happen if he were to do these activities alone and how we could make each thing less threatening. Each session would include suggestions on steps to take between sessions. Due to his parents commitment to follow through between sessions this student quickly made strides in meeting his goals.

After only a few sessions he was able to do all the life skills on his own. We believe that this child may not have been helped so quickly if the access to counseling wasn't so easily available. It was our opinion that if more time had elapsed before seeking service that these fears would have been ingrained much deeper, and therefore more difficult to overcome. During the following months following the conclusion of service, the POI counselor would run into his mother in the school and ask about his progress. She would consistently tell her how well he was doing and that he was showing less anxiety, even in new situations.