The Caregiver’s Perspectives on Trauma Symptoms Copy

The child and the caregiver might have different perspectives on traumatic events and trauma symptoms. Some caregivers might think that they are not good enough as parents. Others might misinterpret their children’s behavior as misbehavior or personal characteristics. This might come up in any session.

Validate their perspectives on trauma

Always try to note, reflect, and validate that there is a lot going on and how this all has been stressful for the whole family. You can use this as an opportunity for psychoeducation to explain trauma responses to the caregiver and how PTSD comes to affect different domains of functioning—social, emotional, academic.

One of the major goals in CCT is that both the child and the caregiver understand that it is traumatic events that caused the child to have these symptoms, including maladaptive behavioral responses. Also, bear in mind that some of the behaviors might be unrelated to trauma, and simply part of normal adolescent development. As some parents may have symptoms of PTSD, anxiety, and/or depression themselves, it is always useful to have some handouts and resources available.