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Question
Posted by: HP | 2009-02-16

Small Child Depressed?

I have a 4 year old son, I did not marry his mother and we have been in a bitter custody and access dispute over the past 2 years. The high court has ruled that we have joint custody over him and that I have reasonable access which at this stage is one Sunday with him every second week.

The mother of the child has taken him to a psychologist due to what she has termed emotional issues. According to her the psychologist has said the child is depressed and that I am the cause and that I am hurting the child emotionally.

As far as I have been able to tell, the child is happy when he is with me, never cries for his mom and has on occassion been reluctant to even get out the car when I take him home after a visit. I have not noticed that he is depressed, but obviously it could be easy to miss since we only spend a day together every second week.

My son' s mother has never told him I am his real father. She has gotten married and my son sees her husband as his father. I have told my son I am his father and this is the reason his mother has given for him being depressed and this is the emotional hurt I have caused him. I believe in being honest with children from the outset.

My question is can a psychologist make such an assessment without ever meeting me or seeing me interact with the child?

My son' s mother has also said that the psychologist has said it is best to first sort out all my son' s " issues"  before getting the rest of the family (including me) in for joint sessions. I do not understand, since if I am the cause should I not then be part of the solution as well?

I have contacted the psychologist when my son first started going to see her, to make her understand that I am available to go see her should she deem it necessary, but to date I have not been asked to go.

I would appreciate your comments.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I very much doubt that any competent psychologist would have said what she says he did --- and to be sure of such a conclusion, he would have needed to interview you, rather than accepting the say-so of a very bitter divorcee. I am of the firm opinion that NO psychologist could professionally or compwetently make such a conclusion without interviewing you AND seeing you interact with the child.
And why has she not given you a copy of the report of the psychologist which she claims says these things ?
And it makes no sense for the shrink to conclude that all the kid's "issues" must be sorted out BEFORE involving the family like you --- when she insists he is of the view that these "issues" are CAUSED by you.
If she refuses to show you a written report from the psychologist saying what she claims, one must assume that no such report exists. YOu can contact the psychologist reporting what is being said to you, and asking (a) whether the shrink did in fact make these conclusions, and (b) how this could be competently done without seeing you

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Our users say:
Posted by: Maria | 2009-02-16

Why don' t you just make an appointment and go and see the psychologist?

Reply to Maria

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