We are in progress for me to learn to do play therapy sessions with the boys individually. A play therapist (psychologist) trains me to structure a play session that allows a child to explore and play out most anything he wants within limits of safety. And it helps to name the feelings the child is experiencing.
The sessions also give the child a way to work out bottled up feelings and experiences from the past as well as to create better bonding to the parent. It is also revealing to the parent as you start to recognize themes in the play time.
Today we had a short session that included one of the boys, and then a short time for me to debrief with the therapist about what she was doing and what themes were coming out. Certainly a revealing process. The themes were not too surprising to me, but it was surprising to see how easily they came out in a totally new setting without using any words really at all.
We will be working on feelings of anger and intense issues for a while it seems.
And it will take a bit of convincing to get him to go back, but the therapist expects we will make more progress and I will get to see more by observing again next week.