Dysregulated Children, Families and Workers

Understanding dysregulated children from a systemic perspective requires an appreciation of the system in which they live and the part each person plays in perpetuating the difficulty. It is easy to include family members, schools and peers but the system also includes us as workers. Just as the dysregulation in the child can easily spread to caregivers and that of caregivers to children so can dysregulation in helpers enter the system and impact all those involved.

The dysregulation therapists are most likely to suffer is compassion fatigue, a state of chronic physical and emotional exhaustion. Common signs include trouble sleeping, amplified or exaggerated physical reflex, increased emotional reactivity (i.e., irritability, anxiety), hypervigilance and diminished interest in regular activities.  It stems from secondary exposure to trauma or suffering presented by clients. The practitioner may become negative towards work, life and others outside the therapeutic relationship, including their own family. They may depersonalize their clients, developing a disparaging attitude towards them and viewing them as less than human, resulting in reduced quality of service and loss of respect.

It is not difficult to imagine the impact of this on an already dysregulated child and family system. Advice by authors Negash,S. and Sahin,S (2011) that practitioners should ‘monitor  their sleep patterns, physical and emotional reactivity, and physical activities’ should be heeded by us all to ensure we do not add additional fuel to an already combustible system.

Negash,S. and Sahin,S. Compassion Fatigue in Marriage and Family Therapy: Implications for Therapists and Clients   January (2011) Journal of Marital and Family Therapy Vol. 37, No. 1, 1–13

Upcoming workshop – Emotional Dysregulation

“A neuro-political approach to therapy with emotionally & behaviourally dysregulated children, adolescents & families”

A one-day workshop, combining clinical expertise, knowledge and training within the Bower Place Complex Needs Clinic. An opportunity to explore research drawing on live clinical practice.

15th March 2019 – 9.30am to 5pm.

Cost $190 for full day training with Senior Practitioners in the field and Bower Place Directors Catherine Sanders and Malcolm Robinson

For bookings (08) 8221 6066 or info@bowerplace.com.au (places are limited)

Bower Clinic

Appointments are available

  • Monday 10am-5pm
  • Tuesday 10am-7.30pm
  • Wednesday 10am-7.30pm
  • Thursday 10am-5pm
  • Friday 10am- 5pm

Fees & Charges

We are able to provide a Bulk Billing service by a psychologist and Medicare accredited Mental Health Social Workers for clients who hold a Mental Health Care Plan from their GP.

We also work with clients covered by NDIS support plans.

Clients who are not covered by either a Mental Health Care Plan or the NDIS are able to access services within the Complex Needs Clinic at a low fee rate of $60 per 90 minute session.

Bower Training

Bower Place has a wide range of qualifications & other training opportunities available including:

  • Graduate Diploma in Family Therapy & Systematic Practice
  • Clinical Supervision
  • Clinical Placements
  • Short Course Specialisation – Introduction to Family Therapy
  • Workshops – Bower Place senior practitioners & national & international guest presenters
  • Knowledge & Training Membership Portal – Bower Systemic

Opportunities to:

  • Work directly with clients in the Bower Place Complex Needs Clinic
  • Partner with senior practitioners in a dynamic learning environment
  • Explore diverse blended knowledge & training methodology
  • Undertake practical weekly or block intensive placement
  • Study online knowledge and theoretical assessments