Attachment Based Play Therapy

Theraplay is a child and family therapy for building and enhancing attachment, self-esteem, trust in others, and joyful engagement. It is based on the natural patterns of playful, healthy interaction between parent and child and is personal, physical, and fun. Theraplay interactions focus on four essential qualities found in parent-child relationships: Structure, Engagement, Nurture, and Challenge. Theraplay sessions create an active, emotional connection between the child and parent or caregiver, resulting in a changed view of the self as worthy and lovable and of relationships as positive and rewarding.In treatment, the Theraplay therapist guides the parent and child through playful, fun games, developmentally challenging activities, and tender, nurturing activities. The very act of engaging each other in this way helps the parent regulate the child’s behavior and communicate love, joy, and safety to the child. It helps the child feel secure, cared for, connected and worthy. We call this “building relationships from the inside out.”   (The Theraplay Institute @


At McCloud Acosta Clinical Services, we assess children and families for the application of Theraplay based on their clinical needs and how it relates to their MIMS results.  We have found children and parents to greatly improved after treatment with issues of defiance, resistance, rejection, connection, calmness, lovingness, and improve the parenting ability to respond appropriately to their child, anticipate the child's needs and find greater enjoyment in the parent child relationship.