It is absolutely normal for children to experience moments of moodiness, irritability, nervousness, sadness and uncertainty. There are many emotional obstacles that youth have to go through while they are developing. 

But the question is, how can us, as parents, determine the difference between normal behaviour that can be resolved naturally without intervention vs. when your child should begin therapy? 

Parenting Your Kids through Sad Moments | All Pro Dad

Here are some identifiers to look out for to see if your child needs treatment:

1.Negative emotional experiences that are impacting their everyday lives and creating distress for the child. 

For example, obsessive/anxious thoughts that do not or rarely cease and there is an inability for the youth to self-sooth. 

2. Expressing constant sadness and hopelessness.

3. Consistently not showing interest and withdrawing from people and activities they usually love and enjoy. 

As youth grow older and head into their teen years it is normal for their interests to change. For example, youth tend to identify more with their friends and less with their parents as they begin going through puberty. However, if your child is withdrawing from their friends and isolating themselves in many or all situations, they are showing a sign they would benefit from therapy. 

boy covering his face while standing

4. Taking part in self-destructive behaviours often.

For example, self- destructive behaviours can look like, self-harm (scratching, cutting or hitting themselves), under-eating or over-eating. 

5. Expressing a lack of self confidence or respect. 

Look out for your child saying mean things about themselves, such as “I don’t like myself” or “I’m not good enough”. 

6. Any mention of suicide. 


At TNPC we are here to support parents and their children through life’s challenges. If your child is showing any of the signs above and you wish to talk to a therapist, click here to book a free consultation with a member of our team. We are here for you.