-Circle of Security™
Parenting Course
  -Comprehensive Parenting


This program is available in group or individual one-on-one sessions at mutually convenient dates and times.

Sessions are also now available on-line via a live, interactive Zoom session, with Donna.

What is Filial Therapy?

Filial Therapy uses the child's natural activity of play and is designed to directly strengthen families through play, so that everyone in the family benefits.

Sometimes called Child-Parent Relationship Therapy, Filial Therapy is a family based form of Non-Directive Child-Centred Play Therapy where the parents work under guidance of the therapist to bring positive changes to the family life.

In our Filial class you will learn special skills that YOU can then go on to use with your own child during special play sessions at home. We will explain and demonstrate basic play therapy skills and give you the opportunity to workshop them in class. We guide parents on the use of empathetic responses to the child's feelings, on building a child's self-esteem, on helping the child learn self-regulation and self-responsibility, and also on how to set therapeutic limits during a session.

In addition, we will:

  • Provide you with a range of effective parenting strategies;
  • Show you how to select appropriate inexpensive toys and equipment;
  • Provide telephone support to discuss your actual play sessions;

    All of the skills you learn for your special play sessions can be later extended into your daily life to help with problems at home.

    Parents find that after attending the Filial Therapy course, they have a deeper appreciation and understanding of their child's inner struggles and a broader range of effective parenting tools. Filial Therapy helps parents to develop a consistent parenting style. During their special playtime the parent creates an accepting relationship, in which the child feels completely free to express themselves through play. Parents usually find that their relationship and attachment to their child is greatly enhanced and that they have a renewed joy in parenting. Parents also find that the small time spent together in filial play is so valuable and special that they are happy to do invest this time. Typically children love having "special play time" with their parents.

    This type of family-oriented play therapy requires commitment and work on the part of the parents. Most parents report that this effort is well worth it in terms of the positive outcomes they've experienced. Families who have participated often continue their special play sessions long after formal therapy ends.

    Benefits of Filial Therapy

    Benefits for the CHILD:

  • Learns and understands own feelings better;
  • Become able to express their feelings more appropriately;
  • Feels heard and understood;
  • Be more able to tell a parent what they need and what is worrying them;
  • More confident and skilled in solving problems as well as asking for help when they need it;
  • Reduction or elimination of emotional, social or behavioural difficulties;
  • Feel more secure and trust their parent more;
  • Develops a healthy self-esteem and self-confidence;
  • Develops ability to work through troubling issues;
  • Increased self-confidence and self-worth.
  • Gains awareness of hyper-arousal & affect regulation and improves self-regulation.

    Benefits for the PARENT:

  • Understand their child's worries and other feelings more fully;
  • Learn new skills for encouraging co-operation from their children;
  • Enjoy playing with their child and giving positive attention;
  • Increase their listening skills and develop open communication with their children;
  • Increased confidence in parenting;
  • Become more trusting their children;
  • Re-discover the joy of parenting;
  • Develop a deeper understanding of your child;
  • Parents become aware of their own behaviour and learn how to regulate themselves.

    Benefits for the FAMILY:

  • Parent and child form closer and happier relationships;
  • Strengthened relationship with your child;
  • You and your child learn to express feelings and communicate in healthy ways;
  • You and your child develop new problem solving skills;
  • Increased trust between you and your child;
  • Increase or repair your family's ability to have fun together;
  • Provide tools that the family can use well into the future.

    For more on Filial Therapy.

    Embley House Testimonials page contains parent comments.
    Further Reading page contains more information.

    © Embley House: counselling for children, adolescents and adults