Art therapy group provides support for parents of children with medical complexity

Doctor with stethoscope
Valley News - Health

ESCONDIDO – The Elizabeth Hospice is offering a six-session support group, Express Yourself, for parents who are caring for a child diagnosed with medical complexity.

Parenting is one of the most difficult and rewarding jobs that anyone can do. Every stage brings new questions and difficult choices. For parents of a child with complex, chronic health concerns, the role can be significantly more stressful, time-consuming and, at its worst, even traumatic.

There is no cost to attend the support group, which will meet Mondays, Aug. 17, 24 and 31 and Sept. 14, 21 and 28 from 4-5:30 p.m. via Zoom. The group uses expressive art therapy, an integrative form of psychotherapy that supports health and well-being. Participants will engage in creative exercises and activities designed to help them express difficult memories and connect with others who share similar life experiences.

Sessions will be facilitated by Brandi Nichols, AMFT, grief counseling associate with The Elizabeth Hospice and Tara Al-Taan, AMFT, ATR-P, grief counseling associate with The Elizabeth Hospice.

“Our counselors will help parents communicate their feelings through art,” Kathlyne Barnum, clinical counseling program supervisor with The Elizabeth Hospice, said. “We’re excited to offer this expressive art therapy program which has been shown to enhance self-discovery and understanding. Since the therapeutic work is based on the creative process, participants do not need a background or training in the arts to benefit from this type of counseling.”

For more information, visit The Elizabeth Hospice at

Submitted by The Elizabeth Hospice.