News | Page 2 of 15 | Kay Trotter

By Appointment : Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm & Saturday 8am to Noon
  Contact : (214) 499-0396

News

Childhood Development Ages 8 to 11

childhood development ages 8-11“The major task of childhood is to become “your own person”

My childhood development blog series will include the characteristics of the “typical” child during each developmental stage from ages 8 to 18, illustrating how children’s progression through these stages is determined not only by biological growth and change, but also by temperament and personality, adult expectations, and social influences.

The main tasks of childhood require children to learn, and this kind of learning is not just a matter of getting the right answer. Most important is to understand the meaning of the right answer. This is truly difficult work and it absolutely requires support from parents, relatives, and neighbors.

To help children grow up, parents need to be aware how their child is changing, growing, and developing. It is easy for a middle-aged adult to forget this fact, especially when confronted with a difficult problem. However, parents who are working on their own growth are in a good position to understand children and to respect what they are doing as they struggle to grow up and become good people in their own right.

Children progression through these stages is determined not only by biological growth and change, but also by temperament and personality, adult expectations, andsocial influences. Children learn to make choices and commitments, follow through with them, and stand up independently in the world. They need to be respected for taking on these tasks. After all, we respect adults who can do these things. They are complicated and courageous actions. However, children swing back and forth between dependence and independence as they work on these tasks. It is easy for parents to get frustrated. It is also easy for a parent to assume that if the child would simply follow the plan that makes sense to a parent, things would be all right in the end.

“Children will not remember you for the material things you provided but for the feeling that you cherished them.”
-Richard L. Evans

Understanding your child’s moral, emotional, and self-development – the main tasks of childhood require children to learn, and this kind of learning is not just a matter of getting the right answer. Most important is to understand the meaning of the right answer. This is truly difficult work and it absolutely requires support from parents, relatives, and neighbors.

To help children grow up, parents need to be aware how their child is changing, growing, and developing. It is easy for a middle-aged adult to forget this fact, especially when confronted with a difficult problem. However, parents who are working on their own growth are in a good position to understand children and to respect what they are doing as they struggle to grow up and become good people in their own right.

Late Childhood Development 8-11″

Cognitive Stage: Children in this developmental stage use logical thinking but with a very limited ability to extend logic to abstract concepts (e.g. the disdain for imaginative and illogical thinking of early childhood). At this point, they have accumulated a lot of general knowledge and have gradually developed the ability to apply learned concepts to new tasks. They also have a frequent interest in learning life skills from adults at home and elsewhere (e.g. cooking, fixing things, etc.).

Moral Development: Children age 8-11 are predominantly focused in the needs and wants of themselves, although they have developed a conscience and move from thinking in terms of “What’s in it for me?” fairness (e.g. “If you did this for me, I would do that for you.”). They now want to gain social approval and live up to the expectations of people close to them. They tend to have a ”Golden Rule” morality where they can take the perspective of others and may place the needs of others over their own self-interest. However, their moral thinking abilities are not always reflected in their behavior.

Psychological and Emotional Traits: Children at this stage have a need to develop a sense of mastery and accomplishment with frequent interest in making plans and achieving goals. They learn from what parents and others do to make and fix things and have a tendency to be disorganized and forgetful.

“Early onset of puberty is associated with lower self-control and emotional instability.”

Self-Concept: Influenced by relationships with family members, teachers, and increasingly by their peers, often relatively, 8- to 11-year-olds have a low level of concern about their physical appearance (especially boys), although this is influenced by peers as well as the media. Many boys experience pressure to conform to “masculine” stereotype. Girls’ body image declines precipitously with puberty, especially with early onset puberty. Early onset puberty is also associated with lower self-control and emotional instability, especially for boys.

Relationship to Parents and Other Adults: Children in late childhood development tend to be closely attached to parental figures and parents increasingly need to involve these children in decision making while increasing responsibility with age. Most frequent conflicts occur over sibling quarrels and forgetfulness with respect to chores, schoolwork, and messiness, especially of their bedroom. Parental listening skills becomes increasingly important as the parent-child communication patterns can change with puberty. Many adolescents report that (a) they cannot talk with parents about issues related to sexuality, and (b) they do not get needed information in sex education courses at school.

Peer Relationships: Friendships among 8- to 11-year-olds are often with their same-gender peers and are usually based on proximity, common interest/hobbies, or other perceived commonalities. Girls usually have fewer, but emotionally closer, friends than boys. Formation of exclusive “clubs” and shifting peer alliances is common at this age and media influences and popular culture increasingly affect the child’s peer activities and relationships.

† Source: Middle Childhood and Adolescent Development, Oregon State University Extension Service.

Next blog of the Childhood Development series will be  “Early Adolescents ages 11-14”

Download the complete ages 8-18  “Task of Childhood” 

Additional Resource:

Ages and Stages A Parent’s Guide to Normal Childhood Development Written by a fellow play therapist Charles E. Schaefer‘s Ages and Stages this book is great for sorting through what’s normal age appropriate behavior and what’s not.

If you would like Dr. Kay Trotter to come talk to your group or find out more about Kaleidoscope Counseling please call 214-499-0396

Dr Trotter also post regularly on her: Facebook Fan Page and Pinterest.

Read More

SuperHero Play Increases Self-Esteem

SuperHero

I just opened a box with new costumes for the play room: Doctor Scrubs, Superman, Wonder Women, Police Officer and Ninja. I am excited to see how the kids use them to play out their emotional conflicts.

Take Superman, for example. Clark Kent is a timid man, but with just a whirl and his special brand of magic, he becomes the all-powerful superhero with superhuman strength and ability. When a child participating in this type of fantasy they successfully boosts themselves from the timid shy Clark Kent to the status of an all-powerful superhuman. This relieves them of their feelings of inadequacy and allows them to discharge their feelings of aggression away from those adults in their life who are in control of them, thus keeping those relationships intact. The greater the imagination, the more elaborate and disguised the fantasies are and the greater the emotional relief and resolution of conflict.

How many times have we all seen young children battling the forces of evil and wondered why does he/she enjoy this so much?

Fantasy in the form of play allows children to build a world of imaginary characters and stories that play out current emotional conflicts in such a way that the emotions are expressed and resolved on a subconscious or unconscious level. Where children rise above themselves as they play, becoming more than their average selves.

In fantasy play, children are able to use abstract and representational thinking, allowing a bowl to become a hat, an empty pot to become a steamy aromatic soup, and a pile of pillows to become a boiling lava flow. This self-guided play requires planning, regulating, and negotiating.  In short, the act of “acting” strengthens the executive functions of the brain.

You can help by

  1. Creating a dressing up box and filling it with old clothes, scarves, jewellery, bags and hats that can be used for pretend play.
  2. Encouraging children to share their pretend play, but without interrupting the flow of play.
  3. Joining in! But let the child lead, through your responses: “Show me what you want me to do,” “What should I say?” or “What happens next?” “What happens now?” “What kind of teacher am I?” “You want me to put that on,” “Hmmm…,”

How does this help my child?

  1. How your child feels about themselves will make a significant difference in their behavior.
  2. As your child feels better about themselves they are able to discover their own strengths and assume greater self-responsibility as they take charge of daily life situations.
  3. How your child thinks, and how they performs in school are directly related to how they feels about themselves.
  4. When your child feels better about themselves, they will behave in more self-enhancing ways rather than self-defeating ways.

If you would like Dr. Kay Trotter to come talk to your group or find out more about Kaleidoscope Counseling please call 214-499-0396

Dr Trotter also post regularly on her: Facebook Fan Page and Pinterest.

You also might like these blog post by Dr Trotter

The Task of Childhood Development

Play Therapy with Young Children

Is Your Child Ready for Kindergarten?

Dr. Trotter’s Pinterest Boards

Additional Resources:

Superhero Play and Child Development

How superhero play supports learning

 

Read More

I had a black dog, his name was depression

Millions of people around the world live with depression. Many are afraid to talk about their struggles, and don’t know where to turn for help. However, depression is largely preventable and treatable. Recognizing depression and seeking help is the first and most critical towards recovery.
[button url=”http://www.kaytrotter.com/depression/” target=”_self” size=”small” style=”black” ]VIEW VIDEO[/button]

Read More

Reduce Stress in Your Life: Coping Skills to Live By

Whenever we experience STRESS it arises from the four core wounding emotions: loss, rejection, betrayal and humiliation.

We have a choice of “hiding” from or ignoring these upsetting experiences. The Mayo Clinic states that stress is a normal psychological and physical reaction to the ever-increasing demands of life. Our ability to effectively cope with these challenges and upsets requires learning and practicing skills so they become everyday coping tools. Just learning about these principles is not enough. Remember about 75% of what you do is out of HABIT. Training our brain to use health coping methods means we can heal our own emotional wounds so we also feel better about ourselves.

Believe it our not our brains are designed to help us cope. Every time we are challenged by new or upsetting experiences that causes us stress, our brain come up with ways to deal with our stress or worry. Our coping brain uses our thinking, feeling and self-protection, to help us get over experiences that make us stressed, worried, angry or upset.

C   O   P   I   N   G   –  P   R   I   N   C   I   P   L   E   S

TO REDUCE STRESS

  1. Recognize that no thought or feeling is wrong in itself, it is what we do with it that really counts.
  2. Become aware of the way your body feels as tension begins to build up— remind yourself to breath.
  3. Recognize that you don’t have to go through this alone — help is available from a wide range of sources.
  4. Work to improve communication with your family and friends
  5. If you are experiencing fatigue or feeling overwhelmed, reduce your responsibilities for a period of time.
  6. Recognize that family and friends have to deal with their feelings too.
  7. Share honestly and lovingly how you are feeling
  8. Do things each day that are nurturing to you. Include fun activities, relaxation, time alone, and exercise.
  9. You can work to solve some of the problems that are causing you stress.
  10. Accept that guilt and worry about things you CAN’T change are useless and energy-draining.
  11. Give yourself credit for whatever level of coping you are achieving.
  12. Remember, there is no “instant fix” for stress.
  13. Develop a love and respect for yourself — because each of us is, with our strengths, a special and worthwhile person.

L   I   F   E   S   T   Y   L   E    –  B   O   D   Y,    M   I   N   D,    S   P   I   R   I   T

TO REDUCE STRESS 

You can’t always avoid stress but being able to identify what causes it is the first step toward helping yourself cope better. If you have difficulty pinpointing the causes or “triggers” of your stress, try keeping a record to help you identify patterns of stress. Learn to identify your type of stress, is it a “social anxiety”  or “chronic stress.”

To effetely use a chart, make a note of all your activates during the day and how you felt at the time. Fill in the chart whenever a stress symptom occurs, noting what happened just before. At the end of the week evaluate when you felt stressed and when you felt relaxed.

R   E   L   A  X  A   T   I   O   N   

TO REDUCE STRESS

For long-term stress relief you need periods of mental and physical relaxation throughout the day. Relaxation is a set of skills that teach you how to combat the effects of stress and restore the balance between body and mind to enable healthy, happy living.

WHY: long-term stress changes the balance of hormones in the body and leads to exhaustion. A suppressed immune system, slower metabolism and slower cell repair, result in rapid aging, weight gain, and greater risk of degenerative disease.

C   O   P   I   N   G   –  S   K   I   L   L   S

TO REDUCE STRESS

  • Learn to become aware of when you are experiencing stress — listen to your body
  • Practice deep breathing – just 3 deep breaths will change your body chemistry
  • Muscle relaxation
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Mindfulness practices – the state of being attentive to and aware of the present moment only
  • Guided Imagery or Visualizations
  • Journal about your feelings, thoughts and worries
  • Use Positive Affirmations to change negative self-talk
  • Exercise daily
  • Get a Massage
  • Pick a hobby
  • Cut down on activities
  • Unplug from technology – turn down the noise
  • Get outside – your brain is created to respond positively to nature — soothing your soul
  • Get enough sleep
  • Seek social support  – talk to someone

Things to Ponder to Help You Free Yourself of Stress

“Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.” ~Eckhart Tolle

“I vow to let go of all worries and anxiety in order to be light and free.” -Thich Nhat Hanh

“Some people think it’s holding that makes one strong – sometimes it’s letting go.” ~Unknown

“Stress is caused by being ‘here’ but wanting to be ‘there.”‘ -Eckhart Tolle

“The final proof of greatness lies in being able to endure criticism without resentment.” -Elbert Hubbard

“Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” –Socrates

“Every day brings a choice: to practice stress or to practice peace.” -Joan Borysenko

“Don’t let your mind bully your body into believing it must carry the burden of its worries.”  ~Astrid Alauda

“I vow to let go of all worries and anxiety in order to be light and free.” -Thich Nhat Hanh

“Letting go of the past means that you can you enjoy the dream that is happening now.” -Don Miguel Ruiz

 

Read More

De-stress: You have the power to reset

[callout1]You stomach clenches, your heart races, and you can’t catch your breath — all tell-tale signs you are getting anxious or overwhelmed. But while a slight from a co-worker or bad news from a family member can raise your blood pressure, you have the power to reset and focus on de-stressing.[/callout1]

Flight or Flight

When you’re stressed, your body instinctively reacts with the “fight or flight response,” which, in the pre-civilization world, helped us escape from predators and dangerous situations.

But, today, our bodies can’t tell the difference between an approaching grizzly bear or a difficult boss. So, our stress response is triggered when there’s no imminent danger. And, instead of helping us to escape, it can contribute to chronic conditions like hypertension and headaches, as well as mental health issues like depression and anxiety disorders.

The good news? Just as you have a stress response, you also have a “relaxation response,” during which you can slow down your breathing, decrease your blood pressure and use less oxygen.

Go For A 10-Minute Walk

While just about any walk will help to clear your head and boost endorphins, consider walking in a park or other green space, which can actually put your body into a state of meditation.

Breathe Deeply

Breathing exercises – or even just taking a few deep breaths – provide an extra boost of oxygen and help reduce tension and relieve stress. Best of all, deep breathes will help you calm down.

Visualize

A short visualization is an easy way to get back to center.

Simply make yourself comfortable (at your desk, on a park bench – wherever!) and then try to picture a peaceful scene: a future vacation, your favorite beach. You can even visualize yourself accomplishing a goal or maybe picture yourself in an elevator, happily sandwiched between two hot actors of your choice!

Eat A Snack

Stress-eating doesnʼt have to be bad. Pick a snack that will fill you up – half an avocado, a handful of nuts, a hard boiled egg. Then take your snack away from your computer and go sit someplace peaceful. Focus on your food: its texture, the way it tastes, how it makes you feel. Voila! Youʼve turned your snack into a meditation.

Step Away From The Screen

Uninterrupted computer use has been associated with stress, lost sleep and depression. Make sure to take frequent breaks from computer use during your day – and try to shut offline at least an hour before bedtime.

Or, On The Other Hand, Plug In

While screens can stress you out, you can turn to the Internet to get a little stress relief. Do a search for a web-based stress management program, like guided meditation, or watch a viral video that will make you laugh. Laughter is a great de-stressor because it first activates your stress response and then deactivates it, creating a kind of “rollercoaster” that leads to a feeling of relaxation.

Hang Up, Then Turn Off Your Phone

Cell phones stress you out, thereʼs no question about that. Smartphones, in particular, can make you feel pressure to respond to messages at all times and talking can even raise your blood pressure. So, consider shutting off your phone for an hour or so.

Put On Some Music

While classical music slows heart rate and lowers blood pressure, any music that you love will flood your brain with feel-good neurochemicals like dopamine. So, crank it up on the drive home!

De-stress: You have the power to reset  

You also might like these resources on reducing stress and anxiety by Dr Trotter

STRESS QUIZ: How Stressed Are You? Do you diminish or categorize your stress as “normal” or “it’s no big deal, everyone has stress?”

Belly Breathing – One of my favorite de-stressor or coping skills that I teach to all my clients young and old that can be done anywhere at any time is “Belly Breathing”. – See more at: http://www.kaytrotter.com/3-deep-breaths/#sthash.D9SldQh5.dpuf

Social Anxiety and Stress – Shyness is the tendency to feel awkward, worried or tense during social encounters, especially with unfamiliar people. There are many degrees of shyness.

Anxiety – Anxiety is the displeasing feeling of fear and concern. Anxiety can create feelings of fear, worry, uneasiness and dread. It is also associated with feelings of restlessness, fatigue, concentration problems and muscle tension.

The Healing Power of Nature – Read how Dr Kay reduces her stress.

Kids and Stress—10 Parenting Tips -The way parents respond to emotional situations significantly affects how well children learn to cope with their emotions.

Dr Trotters Pinterest board Anxiety/Stress Management – Tips to Manage Anxiety and Stress.

Read More

Resources to Strengthen Your Child’s Ethnic Identity

Ethnic identity is important because it’s part of an individual’s self-concept develops from knowledge of membership in a cultural group and the value or emotional significance attached to that membership.  For children it’s important that their parents place value on their own unique ethnic group membership.  The relationship between conceptualization of self, ethnic identity and acculturation is critical for children to development.

Here are some resources to encourage a positive ethnic identity for children of color. Most are global resources, however I have added some local Dallas area resources since that is where I live and practice.

Please let me know if you have additional ethnic identity resources and I will add them to this blog post.

Mocha Moms

mom and baby of colorMocha Moms is an online support group for stay-at-home mothers of color who have chosen not to work full-time outside of the home in order to devote more time to their families. Their web site can be used as a resource for current members, prospective members or anyone interested in stay-at-home parenting, child rearing and related topics.

 

Bill Cosby and Little Bill

Little Bill

Little Bill created by Billy Cosby, Little Bill is based on Cosby’s popular book series and is developed through research and in consultation with a panel of educational consultants. Little Bill is designed to help kids celebrate their everyday experiences and the people who share them.

Little Bill also shows kids that what they do makes a difference in the world. By dealing with conflicts in everyday life, the program encourages children to value the love of their family, to increase self-esteem, and to develop social skills.

Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales For Every Child

black boy and Black mom cartoon

“Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales For Every Child” is a series which retells the world’s most famous fairy tales with a cast of animated characters from many ethnic backgrounds. For the first time ever, children of different races will find themselves represented as the royalty, fairies, and folk of the fairy tale world.

The charm and mystery of the original tales are enhanced by this diverse spectrum of cultures. As the title suggests, these are truly fairy tales for every child.

Up, Up and Away move coverUp, Up and Away

Up, Up and Away movie – Life’s not easy for super-powered teenagers trying to get along in a world that doesn’t understand them. But life is even harder for teens who don’t have superpowers, especially when their parents do. In Disney’s Up, Up and Away, Scott Marshall (Pagan) is the sole “normal” in his super-powered family. His dad is a mild-mannered orthodontist who fights crime as Bronze Eagle. His mother is a similarly mild-mannered businesswoman who takes on the bad guys as Warrior Woman. His older brother Adam rounds out their crime-fighting trio with super speed and electrical powers. Even his little sister, a budding pyromaniac, can shoot laser beams out of her eyes.

 

Jump In move posterJump In!

Jump In! is the 69th Disney Channel Original Movie that premiered on January 12, 2007. The movie, starring Corbin Bleu from High School Musical and Keke Palmer from Akeelah and the Bee, revolves around a young boxer, Izzy Daniels (Corbin Bleu), who trains to follow in his father’s footsteps by winning the Golden Glove. When his friend, Mary (Keke Palmer), however, asks him to substitute for a team member in a Double Dutch tournament, the young .

 

black girl cartoon

Lil’ Bits

Lil’ Bits –  when it comes to quality content for Black Children there is always room for more! At the heart of this web site is the Lil’ Bit’s – African American Children’s Book series, but its content also includes fun online activities for Black Children, and useful resources for Black parents. Lil’ Bits is one of many projects by LaShanda Henry, founder of Multiple Shades of You Online, an eCommunity designed for diverse audiences.

Movies – Videos – Books

Movies and books that provide a positive message, lots of black characters, especially show black children being brave and smart vs. dancing, singing and enjoin life to the fullest.

  • Akeelah & The Bee
  • Fat Albert the movie
  • Our Friend Martin
  • Raising Black Boys by Jawanza Kunjufu

South Dallas Cultural Center

Youth Programs South Dallas

The South Dallas Cultural Center is an Afrocentric center that provides instruction and enrichment in the performing, literary, media, and visual arts. The program emphasizes the African contribution to world culture.

DallasBlack.com

DallasBlack.com – Your Internet connection to the Dallas black community

 

Read More

Depression Checklist

Depression is one of those heavily used terms in our culture, applied to everything from a fleeting feeling to a serious clinical syndrome. Sometimes folks who have been depressed for a while are so used to it they do not even recognize it as depression! The following checklists are two tools to get you thinking about yourself, your mood, and your physical symptoms.

Emotional Checklist:

  • A persistent sad, anxious or “down” mood?
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed?
  • Reduced appetite and weight loss or weight gain?
  • Sleeping too little or sleeping too much?
  • Restlessness or irritability?
  • Persistent physical symptoms that don’t respond to treatment (such as headaches, chronic pain, or constipation and other digestive disorders)?
  • Fatigue or loss of energy?
  • Difficulty with concentration, decision-making or memory?
  • Feeling guilty, hopeless or worthless?
  • Thoughts of death or suicide?

Because these symptoms occur with many conditions, many depressed people never get help, because they don’t know that their physical symptoms might be caused by depression. A lot of doctors miss the symptoms, too.

Physical Symptoms Checklist:

  • Headaches. These are fairly common in people with depression. If you already had migraine headaches, they may seem worse if you’re depressed.
  • Back pain. If you already suffer with back pain, it may be worse if you become depressed.
  • Muscle aches and joint pain. Depression can make any kind of chronic pain worse.
  • Chest pain. Obviously, it’s very important to get chest pain checked out by an expert right away. It can be a sign of serious heart problems. But depression can contribute to the discomfort associated with chest pain.
  • Digestive problems. You might feel queasy or nauseous. You might have diarrhea or become chronically constipated.
  • Exhaustion and fatigue. No matter how much you sleep, you may still feel tired or worn out. Getting out of the bed in the morning may seem very hard, even impossible.
  • Sleeping problems. Many people with depression can’t sleep well anymore. They wake up too early or can’t fall asleep when they go to bed. Others sleep much more than normal.
  • Change in appetite or weight. Some people with depression lose their appetite and lose weight. Others find they crave certain foods — like carbohydrates — and weigh more.
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness.

These physical symptoms aren’t “all in your head.” Depression can cause real changes in your body. For instance, it can slow down your digestion, which can result in stomach problems. Depression seems to be related to an imbalance of certain chemicals in your brain. Some of these same chemicals play an important role in how you feel pain. So many experts think that depression can make you feel pain differently than other people.

But make sure to tell your health care provider about any physical symptoms. Don’t assume they’ll go away on their own. They may need additional treatment. For instance, your doctor may suggest an anti-anxiety medicine if you have insomnia. Those drugs help you relax and may allow you to sleep better.

Exploring your depression treatment options:

Antidepressants aren’t a cure. Medication may treat some symptoms of depression, but can’t change underlying contributions to depression in your life. Antidepressants won’t solve your problems if you’re depressed because of a dead-end job, a pessimistic outlook, or an unhealthy relationship. That’s where therapy and other lifestyle changes come in.

Studies show that therapy works just as well as antidepressants in treating depression, and it’s better at preventing relapse once treatment ends. While depression medication only helps as long as you’re taking it, the emotional insights and coping skills acquired during therapy can have a more lasting effect on depression. However, if your depression is so severe that you don’t have the energy to pursue treatment, a brief trial of antidepressants may boost your mood to a level where you can focus on therapy.

In addition to therapy, other effective treatments for depression include exercise, meditation, relaxation techniques, stress management, support groups, and self-help steps. While these treatments require more time and effort initially, their advantage over depression medication is that they boost mood without any adverse effects.

If you would like Dr. Kay Trotter to come talk to your group or find out more about her counseling practice, you can contact her at: 214-499-0396 or email Kay@KayTrotter.com

Read More

Parenting Recommended Reading Series

Each day in the month of January 2014, I will post one of my favorite parenting books across a child’s lifespan on my Facebook Fan page.

I have found these books to be very valuable in my understanding of human nature.

I offer them to as a tool to enhance your parenting skills, personal growth, and personal relationships.

If you would like to suggest a parenting book for this series, that has been impactful to you please leave me a comment below with the books title and why you find it valuable.

I hope that you will join me on my Facebook Fan Page.

Kay Trotter Signature

Read More

Coping with Grief at Christmas through Play

“I miss my sissy”

I have to share this photo and story from another play therapies friend of mine!

Molly wrote me telling me this story: A friend of mine lost her, then 16-year-old, daughter in a car accident one year ago. As the family is dealing with the pain of the loss at the holidays – this photo was taken today (Dec 23, 2013).

It is my friends older daughter who is 19, found in the home playing with their old toys (which the two were known to do often together.) I love this photo – it speaks VOLUMES to the power of play – at the angel the picture was taken, you can’t tell this is a 19-year-old young lady, but rather – I can see the child in her coming out, trying to feel connected to her lost sister as a way to cope with missing her at the Holidays.

In her words, she shared “I miss my sissy and this was the only way to feel more with her.”

Dr Kay Trotter Kaleidoscope Counseling

Through play a child communicates emotions & feelings

I would love to hear your stores on how you cope with grieve during the Christmas Holiday.

Please leave me your comment as this is the first Christmas with out my mom (Sue Sudekum 1932-2013) and I miss her very much. In fact I find that this Christmas I cry a lot and at the lease little thing too. As painful as this time is, it does bring my mom closer to me as I have been thinning and talking to her often.

Death and Grief Resources

Dealing with grief during the holidays

An encouraging word – for those who grief at Christmas 

Dr John Irvine helping children deal with grief at Christmas

More of Dr Kay’s blogs on Grief:

Grief and Loss

How to Comfort a Friend After a Death

Guiding Teens Through Loss

Invisible Wounds of Deeply Hurting Children

Read More