DBT® for persons with developmental delays
DBT® for persons with developmental delays:
- The individual therapy for DBT® focuses on helping the client generalize skills taught in the skills training session to their daily life. Individual therapy occurs weekly with a therapist who is highly trained and adept at the client’s needs. The client will be learning a host of skills in weekly skills training; however, at times may need assistance in applying them in their own life. The individual therapist will also use the diary card or a modified tracking form to help the client become more aware of their moods and urges. The family does not necessarily participate actively in the individual session; rapport and trust between client and therapist are paramount. This therapist could be different from the skills trainer and could even be from a different agency from Compass Point if you already have one that you prefer. We encourage parents/family members to get a therapist if they need to work on their own emotional needs and can help facilitate that if needed.
- The DBT® Skills Training for a person developmental or cognitive delays is done 1:1 and may include family members; rather than in a skills class setting. This is due to the struggle that is often encountered due to the pace and teaching methods of the general skills class (a lot of teaching via metaphors, analogies and abstract thinking). This session will be in addition to the weekly therapy and provides an environment for the client and family members to learn and refine skills for daily coping in a more concrete way. All developmental and/or cognitive delays are different and all exist on a spectrum. Individualized skills training allows each client’s needs to be met in the most effective way. Skill sessions run for approximately one year, meeting weekly for sessions with one or both parents in attendance to learn the skills too (if applicable). The goal is that the parent becomes the skills expert and will coach the client at home. All family members will be assigned to practice mindfulness, complete skills homework and learn new skills each week together. Note: It is recommended that the same family member attend each week.
- In addition to weekly therapy, skills generalization is also available during phone coaching. Phone coaching will be assessed on a case by cases basis for appropriateness and/or effectiveness. The therapist will determine whether the client or a family member will be assigned as the designated contact for phone coaching. This will help the family in order to get figuring out which skills to use. Phone coaching consists of a 5-8 minute phone calls or brief text exchanges when the client is in a crisis; prior to engaging in any maladaptive behavior.