Featuring Katy Child Psychology Associates and Dr. James Poysky, PhD & Owner/Licensed Psychologist/Neuropsychologist
At Katy Child Psychology Associates they recognize that every family is different and each person’s situation is unique. Which is why they are committed to providing each family with individualized, compassionate care.
They provide expert assessment, diagnosis, consultation and intervention for childhood behavior and learning problems. Local families look to them to gain valuable information and support for their children and they assist families in finding resources and treatment options that are suitable for their individual needs.
Their goal is to identify your child’s strengths and weaknesses and to develop a plan for intervention. They can also provide recommendations for pediatricians, schools, teachers and other related professionals, depending on the needs and desires of the child and his/her family.
We got to interview the owner of this great practice and are thrilled to share it with you below for today’s Wellness Wednesday. After all, mental health is so very important, especially in our children.
Website & Social Media: www.katychildpsychology.com on Facebook and Instagram
When did the doors open on Katy Child Psychology and what was the mission behind it?
Our family moved to Katy in 2007. We have always wanted to contribute to, and serve, the community in which we live, and we have dedicated our lives to the wellbeing of children. It seemed like a natural step to establish Katy Child Psychology, which opened in 2009. Our goal was to help parents know not just what was causing their child to struggle, but also to help them understand their child’s strengths. We believe that every child has the chance to have a healthy, productive life, and we want to help give them the tools they need to do that.
Tell us about the important work you do in the child psychology space?
We believe that the best way to facilitate growth is by partnering with parents and their primary care physicians in addressing the emotional, behavioral, and learning needs of the child, serving as the “primary care mental health” provider. This can include things like conducting diagnostic evaluations to provide accurate information about what the child is experiencing and why, providing emotional support, teaching tools and skills through psychotherapy (individually and in groups), communicating with pediatricians, and educating and training parents in what they can do to support their child’s progress at home, and into the future.
Why psychology in childhood?
I believe that early intervention is key to setting a child up for long-term success. I often see parents who wait to address an issue because they hope it will get better, their child will just outgrow it, etc. Obviously, we don’t want to blow things out of proportion, or look under every rock trying to find a problem to fix. However, if there is a problem going on, it is usually easier to address it as soon as possible, because it can become more severe or problematic over time. We also must remember that this is occurring in the context of a child’s development, and any sort of disruption in that process can have a long-term impact. And who doesn’t want to see their child happy and experiencing success? It can be very distressing to us parents when it feels like our child is struggling, or when a child’s behavior creates chaos and stress for the entire family.
How can parents identify when to seek out help and treatment?
I am a firm believer in parent intuition. I always say that parents should trust their gut, and if something feels “off” they should not ignore that. They are usually correct, even if they can’t tell you exactly what the problem is. If it feels like there is a problem, get it checked out. And make sure you get your questions answered, and feel comfortable with the final conclusions and recommendations. If someone tells you, “Don’t worry, it’s just a phase.”, get a second opinion. On the other side, if people who know your child are expressing concerns, don’t be dismissive of what they are saying, especially if they have experience working with children. The last thing is, don’t let fear of a potential diagnosis or treatment cause to you not get it checked out. Information is power. When you know what is going on, you can pick whatever interventions feel like the best fit and ultimately change the course of your child’s life for the better.
Tell us what makes you unique in the industry.
My son has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, which affects both muscles and the brain, so we have been a “special needs” family since 2005. As a result of this experience and being a parent trying to support his struggles with learning and other psychological challenges, I think I have a different, more complex perspective when providing care to other families. Also, as a general philosophy, I try to place an emphasis on making sure that the care we provide is validated by science, and not just the “fad of the moment”. I am always challenging the therapists at Katy Child Psychology to prioritize treatment approaches that have been shown to work for specific problems, and to develop a treatment plan with specific goals. AND to communicate those goals to parents. All too often I speak with families whose child has previously been in counseling for several months, and the child cannot show me a single skill or technique they learned, and the parents cannot describe what was happening during the counseling sessions. Katy parents tend to be very invested in their children, and usually want to know what they can do to help their child make progress at home. Therapists should be taking the time to specifically teach parents techniques and strategies that they can use to be the “therapist at home” whenever possible (if they can do so while still maintaining confidentiality).
Favorite success stories since opening your business?
I can’t share specific stories, but I love it when we get to see kids who came to us years ago for an evaluation or therapy, and when they return for a follow-up. The parents tell me how that information changed the trajectory of a child’s life for the better. I can’t help but think that there are times when we may have even saved their life.
Who is your ideal customer/patient?
We serve children and their families, ages 2 years through 18 years of age. In some cases I will see college students, but only for concerns related to learning challenges.
What’s the best part of what you do each day?
The best part of my day is giving parents information about their child that they didn’t have before. The sense of relief, and the burden that has been taken off them, is huge. I love when a parent feels empowered to help their children succeed with this new information. Sometimes we must give difficult or distressing information, but even in these situations, the fact that we can come up with a plan helps them feel better, and like things can move in the right direction.
What’s your favorite part about practicing in the Katy community?
We love Katy. This is our home, so it is nice to be able to care for others and give back to the community to which we belong. I love how there are people who live here from all over the world. This keeps things interesting, and I learn something new every day. I also love how parents are so invested in their children here.
What makes your staff and providers so special and unique?
Our staff is so passionate about their work. It is a privilege to work with each therapist and psychologist here. We believe in what we do and we care about the people we serve.
Future for your practice?
We hope to continue serving Katy for many more years! We recently opened a second location (a few doors down from our original building), which we call the Katy Child Psychology “Learning Center”. This gives us more therapy offices, but also has larger rooms to allow for things like group therapy, social skills training classes, and parent seminars/support groups. We hope to continue to expand what we offer to the families of Katy, based upon what they need.