Therapy & Problematic Sexualized Behaviors

Promoting healing through therapy.

Children between the ages of 5 and 18 who have experienced sexual abuse may be referred to the Center for therapy. We offer several types of therapy, including Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, EMDR, body safety, individual workshops, age-specific therapy groups, and parent support groups.

All our therapists have specialized trauma training and are experienced in utilizing evidence-based treatment approaches with children and adolescents. The goal of therapy is to provide a safe space for families to engage in their healing journeys through the guidance of client-centered, individualized treatment goals.

Therapy generally consists of weekly counseling appointments and may include such treatment practices as play, art, sensory, and sand tray interventions.

For more information regarding therapy through the Center, please email clinical services supervisor Alicia Cadena or call her at (616) 336-5176.

Para obtener más información sobre la terapia a través del Centro, envíe un correo electrónico a la supervisora clínica Alicia Cadena o llámela al (616) 336-5176.

What to Expect in Your First Counseling Session

Addressing problematic sexual behaviors.

Sexual exploration and play are a natural part of childhood sexual development; however, some childhood sexual behaviors may indicate more than harmless curiosity. In some cases, sexual behaviors pose a risk to the safety and well-being of the child and other children in his or her world.

If you are a parent or caregiver with questions about problematic sexual behaviors (PSB), please email Intake & MDT Coordinator Kelsey Klumpstra or call (616) 336.5160. Kelsey can help determine if PSB screening and/or treatment may be appropriate for your child.

PSB Screening:

Offered for children age 9 and under who have not disclosed sexual abuse but have exhibited problematic sexual behaviors. A trained specialist will meet with both the parent/caregiver and the child individually to gather information around the concerns, provide education around body safety and offer potential treatment recommendations.

PSB Treatment:

Treatment at the Center may be recommended following a PSB screening. Our trained therapists provide a Body Safety Group that teaches children about their bodies and how to keep themselves safe. It promotes body safety, appropriate boundaries, privacy, and telling. The therapists will also assist parents/caregivers in developing parenting techniques and supportive strategies the family can use in the home.

For more information on PSB and child sexual development:

Problematic Sexual Behaviors
Sexual Development and Behavior in Children

National Center on the Sexual Behavior of Youth
Healthy Children – Sexual Behaviors

For answers to common questions about therapy, please visit our FAQ’s page. For more information, please email clinical services supervisor Alicia Cadena.

This project was supported by Federal Award 2018-V2-GX-0067 from the Department of Justice, administered by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Victim Services.

5% of children under the age of 18 are solicited sexually online.
1,000+ suspected child sexual abuse cases are reported in Kent County each year.
75% of childhood sexual abuse is thought to go unreported.
1 in 7 girls and 1 in 25 boys are sexually abused.