Who Should You Talk To: the Adult in the Room or the Child from the Past?

Psychotherapy Networker

Janina Fisher on how and when to speak to a client’s “child part” in the consulting room


When an adult is in your consulting room, it’s understandable if you use adult language and logic. But at certain points in the healing process, you may need to communicate with someone else—the client’s child part.

According to recognized expert, Janina Fisher, this is especially true when there is a history of trauma or attachment issues. In this quick video clip, Janina explores the therapeutic cost of missing the cue when the “child” needs to be the focus and she covers the ABC’s of communicating and building a strong connection with your client’s child part.



Janina Fisher is assistant director of the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, an instructor at the Trauma Center in Boston, and a former instructor at Harvard Medical School. This clip is taken from her session in our challenging cases video course:

Tough Customers: Treating Clients with Challenging Issues
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Topic: Challenging Clients & Treatment Populations | Trauma

Tags: attachment issues | Clifton Mitchell | Janina Fisher | psychotherapy | sensorimotor psychotherapy | tough customers | William Doherty | Tough Customers Webcast series

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1 Comment

Monday, February 16, 2015 6:38:52 PM | posted by joystar
This is absolutely true and critical. Our clients go back and forth and we must not condescend or be analytic when what is called for is validation, support or, occasionally, confrontation. Like all children, the wounded inner child needs the safety to feel emotions in their full intensity but also safe to be kept from hurting self, others or property. The inner adult, like all adults, needs respect,guidance, compassion, and the right to claim her/his/our authority.