The Benefits of Parent Child Interaction Therapy

Being an ABA therapist, we are typically the ones interacting with the clients.  However, PCIT (parent child interaction therapy) is something we offer that focuses on parent-child interaction.  The purpose of PCIT is to increase the positivity of those interactions as well as strengthen the relationship between parent and child.  During the first phase, we create an environment in which there are no commands, questions, or negative talk from the parents in an effort to make the child-led time positive and desirable for the child.  I have had the opportunity to run PCIT with two different families and have seen different reactions to it.  One of my clients loves and craves attention, so PCIT for him is very reinforcing and he looks forward to it daily.  Because of this being a reinforcer for him, he is always very engaged with mom and she can enjoy it as well.  The second phase of PCIT involves the parents placing demands on the child and learning how to ask them questions in a way that the child can understand.  Overall, running PCIT has been a great experience because you get the chance to watch parents and their children interact with each other in a positive way.  My favorite part is hearing from a parent that their relationship with their child has been positively changed because of this therapy that you were a part of.