I375 – Infant/Early Childhood Mental Health Practice: Parent/Child Relationships
This yearlong course focuses on developing relationships with families and on how these relationships can support growth and change in both child and parent. Emphasis is placed on sensitive listening, understanding and holding difficult emotional states, and providing emotional support, concrete assistance and developmental guidance specific to the individual child. Emphasis is placed on the practice of parent/infant psychotherapy, including understanding and responding to the parents’ history, allowing relationship conflicts to be expressed and explored, and supporting parents in observing, nurturing and engaging with their child. Students will develop in-depth intervention skills as well as learn to recognize the limits of their practice, based on their disciplinary training, and how to collaborate with other care systems including adult mental health services. Topics covered will include parental psychiatric illness, chemical dependency, child maltreatment and trauma, failure to thrive, intimate partner violence and infants and toddlers in foster care. Emphasis is on the use of evidence based practices in treatment.