There is so much out there on how to get your child to behave. But recent studies have shown that parents want so much more than this. They want to know how to have the best possible relationship with their child, and this is what these films are all about. They will equip you with a whole host of fun packed ways of connecting, communicating and being together, proven to be vital not only for bonding but for brain development. So if you want the best possible relationship with your child, these films will give you a fabulous menu of ideas, not only to enrich your relationship now, but as an investment for life.


first five yearscreative quality timeage five twelve


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The Centre for Child Mental Health:

CONVERSATIONS THAT MATTER. Talking with children and teenagers in ways that help.


The latest book by Dr Margot Sunderland, offers a wealth of tools and techniques to empower practitioners and parents to connect to children and teenagers through conversation, in life changing ways. Packed with creative possibilities, and illustrated with numerous ‘conversations’, this book can be returned to again and again whilst helping children and teenagers work through any painful life issue, past or present. The book also contains photocopiable worksheets. A ‘must-buy’ for any adult who want the conversations they have with children and teenagers to genuinely help, and to matter.

More information from Worth Publishing Ltd:

Order from Worth Publishing Ltd

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Telephone: 01332 841190


The Parent - Child Relationship Spa (devised by Dr Margot Sunderland) 

enchanted-house-logo-setThe main goal of the Parent-Child Relationship Spa is to equip parents and carers with the tools to nourish their relationships with a fabulous  take home repertoire of activities for that vital quality time. Like all spas, it’s a wonderful pampering environment uniquely designed to enhance parent- child bonding and brain development. (Age range: Babies and children up to nine years of age). No actual jacuzzis or saunas, but sensory rooms for parent child couples to be transported together into blissful states of awe and wonder,and exciting taught sessions on relational games and communication strategies that can be used to deepen parent child bonds long after you leave.  There is also live theatre, surprise visits from fantasy characters, messy play, small world play, drumming zone, dressing up,  snacks and refreshments on tap  (one and half hour sessions every Wednesday, pre-booking essential








Conferences 2016/2017

Margot will be presenting at the following conferences at The Centre for Child Mental Health, (2-18 Britannia Row, London N1 8PA).

Sat 10 September 2016

Helping Children and Teenagers with Stress, Anxiety and Everyday Worries

This conference will address the importance of recognising symptoms in children and teenagers whose lives are blighted by stress and anxiety, and how to make effective interventions. There will be particular focus on the contributory factors of insecure attachment, living with troubled parents, trauma and loss.

The following manifestations of stress and anxiety will be specifically addressed: self-harm, obsessions, panic attacks, OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), social phobias, debilitating shyness, generalised anxiety disorder, selective mutism, unfulfilled potential or lack of assertiveness, over-compliance and psychosomatic symptoms. Conference presenters will explore why these agonies can start so early in life and without intervention continue into adult life. They will also provide evidence-based relational interventions and offer ways of connecting with children and teenagers who present an array of defence mechanisms to manage their anxieties as well as camouflaging coping strategies.

Benefits from attending this conference

  • Understand the psychology, neuroscience and genetic-environment interplay of stress, anxiety and excessive worrying
  • Learn about effective intervention with children who are depressed or anxious as a result of trauma, loss, parental separation or divorce
  • The body as theatre where painful memories appear in all manner of stress related symptoms, sleep disorders, illness and hyper-aroused states
  • Discover ways of enabling children to be able to speak about their feelings and developing secure attachment as resilience
  • Learn why some children internalise and others externalise their problems
  • Learn how to address unmet attachment and emotional regulation needs in children and young people
  • Learn about effective parent, parent-child and family interventions

More info

Sat 18 February 2017

Therapeutic Conversations to Change Children’s Lives: (Age 4 to Late Teens) 

The following conversational topics will be covered:

  • Conversations about loss   
  • Conversations about messing up in a big way (teenagers) 
  • Conversations about anxiety, fear, worry
  • Conversations about living with parents with mental health problems  
  • Conversations about lying/stealing 
  • Conversations about hopelessness/depression 
  • Conversations about bullying 
  • Conversations about parents fighting, quarrelling or splitting up  
  • Conversations about sibling rivalry
  • Conversations about sexual abuse 
  • Conversations about transitions and major life changes
  • Conversations about not daring to trust 
  • Conversations about being too frightened to love or be loved 
  • Conversations about self-harm 
  • Conversations about sexuality and transgender issues

When faced with a child’s pain and suffering it can be difficult to know how to respond. How do you avoid being patronising, crass, dismissive? How do you stop yourself giving an unhelpful lecture or moving into misplaced optimism, opening up a can of worms and generally making things worse?

This topic based day will give child professionals and parents alike a wealth of resources to empower them to respond in ways that really help, leaving the child/teenager feeling deeply understood and supported. Moreover, as a result of repeated meaningful conversations like this, children and teenagers can then develop the capacity to reflect on things themselves (rather than just react), and in so doing successfully work through whatever life throws at them. This way they can go on to thrive, rather than growing up with the blight of mental ill-health. If we don’t help children through therapeutic conversations, we will continue to see the epidemic levels of mental ill-health and human misery in society today.

Benefits from attending this conference 

  • Become more confident in addressing difficult subjects
  • Take away a wealth of skills for talking about the child’s or teenager’s experiences of trauma or loss
  • Feel far more skilled in what to say, how to attune and empathise so that the child or teenager feels understood and connected to
  • Understand ways of not taking things personally when the going gets tough but to stay reflective rather than reactive under stress

More info

'Helping Children of Troubled Parents' and 'Monica Plum's Horrid Problem'

troubledparents monicaplum

The titles in this extraordinary series are a vital resource. Nine practical guidebooks, each with an accompanying beautifully illustrated storybook, have been written to help children (aged 4-12) think about and connect with their feelings. These guides and stories enable teachers, parents and professionals to recognise the unresolved feelings behind a child's behaviour and to respond correctly to help. Each guidebook focuses on a key feeling and is written in very user-friendly language. The exercises, tasks and ideas for things to say and do are specifically designed to help children think about, express and process the feeling to the point of resolution.

This guidebook offers readers a wealth of vital theory and effective interventions for working with these children and, specifically, the key feelings such children need help with. Particular focus is given to the effects on children of:

  • Family breakdown
  • Separation and divorce
  • Witnessing parents fighting
  • Parents who suffer from depression or anxiety, mental or physical ill-health, alcohol or drug addiction.

The two books 'Bothered' and 'Helping Teenagers with Anger and Low Self-Esteem' are based on years of experience working in adolescent units and underpinned with all the latest theory in psychology and neuroscience.

725ab2e5536ce3eac0a8dd17d083ff4e MBothered: Helping Teenagers to Talk About Their Feelings

'Bothered' aims to empower people to have thoughtful, reflective conversations with teenagers about their life experiences. The book is full of tools and techniques for what to say and how to be when having conversations with teenagers, underpinned by the latest research, psychology and neuroscience in adolescent development. The exercises will help teenagers to move towards real self-awareness, better self-esteem and the ability to thrive. The book offers a key assessment tool, 'The Teenager Well-Being Profile'. If the teenager is struggling in some areas, the Well-Being Profile will show clearly which life skill they need support in. The accompanying worksheets address key feelings, issues and concerns common to teenagers, enabling adults to talk with teenagers in a confident, non-embarrassing and effective way. This book provides an opportunity for transformational conversations with young people aged 11-18 that will really make a difference.

53bed31cb74891ae64a31e4c592ef86d MHelping Teenagers with Anger & Low Self-Esteem [Paperback]

Many teenagers who suffer from anger, anxiety and low self-esteem need help from understanding adults. Without this help, painful feelings can often overwhelm them, badly affecting their emotional health, their relationships with parents and peers, their schoolwork and quality of life. This comprehensive resource contains vital theory and practice, tools and techniques as well as case studies from contributors with extensive hands-on experience of working with troubled young people.

  • Practical ideas for creating and building connections.
  • Learn how to initiate and develop transformative conversations.
  • Offers tried-and-tested therapeutic interventions.
  • Understand what lies behind aggressive behaviour. - Help teenagers address their feelings so they don't act them out in a destructive manner.
  • Learn why teenagers can move from painful feelings to anti-social behaviour.
  • Understand key psychological research and the brain science behind troubled feelings and behaviour in adolescence.
  • Gain key parenting skills.
  • The extensive selection of illustrated worksheets and exercises have been developed in consultation with teenagers themselves, and will be a vital aid to helping young people deal with their feelings.

Contributors: Louise Bartel; Lynne Davis; Alison Eldridge; Tracy Godfroy; Dom Guard; Margot Sunderland; Louis Sydney. A vital resource for all professionals and parents who seek to reach and help teenagers who struggle with anger, anxiety and low self-esteem.


Course designed by Margot. Certificate/Diploma in Parent-Child Therapy

picture-two"I am passionate about this course. It is totally unique. So often, just like couples, parents and children get stuck in their relationship and they need help to get unstuck and move on.

This course is about enabling professionals to empower parents with a kind of relationship repair tool kit!  The course will also resource professionals to help a parent and child talk together in ways that can enable the two people to become close and connected again, ending often literally years of alienation or harbored resentments”  (Margot Sunderland)

More information

The Centre for Child Mental Health (Director Margot Sunderland) supports an orphanage in North Uganda run by a former child soldier. The orphanage has no other aid.

David Taransund a former student at The Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education (co founding director Margot Sunderland) has just come back after spending time at an orphanage in Uganda.  He used art therapy, puppets, drawing and play, to heal traumatised child soldiers and their victims.  Currently the orphanage has absolutely no aid from any of the big charities. Before David’s visit, the orphanage had only one book for a 100 children and no toys. The children sleep on  cow dung (it keeps the snakes away). The Centre for Child Mental Health has just paid for toys, books and art materials to be sent. They have also paid for 100 beds (see final picture)












Margot's Books

Dr Margot Sunderland (Award winning Author and Expert in Child Development, Child Psychology, Child Psychotherapy , and Parenting.

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Forthcoming Public Lectures

Saturday 10 September 2016 (10:00-17.00) 
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Saturday 18 February 2017 (10:00-16.30)
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Contact Information

2-18 Britannia Row
London N1 8PA

Tel: 0207 354 2913

Please note: due to major time constraints Margot regrets she is unable to offer a personal advisory service on parenting or child development issues.

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