Promoting Positive Growth with Children Group C-DBT Therapy

Learn more about the benefits of group child dialectical behavior therapy at Ethos Wellness.

Mental Health at Every Age

1 in 5 children struggle with a mental health disorder each year in the United States. As a leading provider of behavioral health treatment, Ethos Wellness aims to challenge these concerning statistics through our specialized outpatient healing centers across Texas and Illinois. 

One of our signature treatment offerings is the group child dialectical behavior therapy (C-DBT) program. This evidence-based approach fosters emotional regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and peer support for children grappling with mental health challenges.

Recognizing When a Child May Need Support

As parents or caregivers, we want our children to thrive. However, there are many factors that can profoundly impact a child’s mental health. 

These include:

  • The pressures of school
  • Social dynamics
  • Family life
  • Developmental changes 


Many children hide their struggles or lack the language to articulate their distress. Being attuned to potential red flags is crucial for early intervention. 

Signs a Child May Benefit from Mental Health Support

Signs that a child may benefit from mental health support include:

  • Extreme mood swings
  • Explosive emotional outbursts
  • Withdrawing from friends and family
  • Declining school performance
  • Changes in eating and sleeping patterns
  • Self-harming behaviors
  • Expressing hopeless feelings

The Importance of Seeking Help

These symptoms often indicate underlying mental health issues, including:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Trauma
  • Emerging personality disorders


Left unaddressed, such challenges can disrupt development, relationships, and quality of life. The good news is that evidence-based treatments like group C-DBT can equip children with healthy coping strategies.

Understanding Group Child Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is an empirically-supported treatment. It was initially developed to treat borderline personality disorder. It has since been adapted for group settings and child populations. 

The “dialectical” approach helps children balance acceptance and change by developing:

  • Distress tolerance
  • Emotion regulation
  • Interpersonal effectiveness
  • Mindfulness skills

Benefits of Group C-DBT

Group C-DBT sessions create a safe space for children to process emotions, roleplay social scenarios, and receive support from peers. This normalizes their experiences while enhancing self-efficacy. 

Groups are led by experienced therapists who facilitate skill-building and collaborative discussions. The approach is non-judgmental, empowering children to help themselves and one another. 

Multiple research studies confirm that group child DBT improves emotion regulation abilities, reduces anxiety/depression, and enhances social functioning. By focusing on the “here and now,” children gain real-time feedback and coaching to apply their emerging skills. This creates sustainable behavior change.


The Ethos Wellness Approach

At Ethos Wellness, we believe no two children’s stories are the same. Treatment should reflect that. 

Our team of compassionate child psychology experts aim to understand the unique story behind each child’s struggles. This informs tailored group C-DBT treatment plans catering to different needs and goals. 

Additionally, our specialized outpatient healing centers provide flexible options for in-person or virtual sessions. With locations across Texas and Illinois, including child and adolescent psychiatry services, we remove barriers to mental healthcare. 

Throughout the therapeutic journey, our clinicians offer unwavering support. We build trust through patience, empathy, and truly listening. Collaboration is key; children take ownership of their treatment plans and progress. 

Ultimately, Ethos Wellness empowers children to cultivate resilience and reclaim their sense of self.

Why Group Child Dialectical Behavior Therapy?

Group C-DBT offers life-changing benefits for children, including: 

  • Peer support: Connecting with other kids facing similar problems reduces isolation. Groups facilitate sharing stories, role playing, and collaborating to solve dilemmas. This social learning boosts confidence.
  • Enhanced emotion regulation: Children gain skills to manage difficult emotions in healthy ways, preventing issues like explosive anger, panic attacks, or withdrawal. This reduces anxiety, depression, and conflict. 
  • Healthier relationships: Practicing interpersonal skills together builds assertiveness, accountability, stress tolerance, and self-respect. Children can apply this learning to make and maintain friendships, improving social satisfaction. 
  • Individualized treatment: Our compassionate therapists personalize group C-DBT to each child’s needs across development. No two treatment plans look alike, ensuring relevance. 


Through group support, children realize they are not alone. With new coping tools under their belt, they feel empowered to navigate life’s challenges.

Navigating the Group C-DBT Program

At Ethos Wellness, we customize group C-DBT to meet the needs of each child. However, the overall structure includes:

Small Group Format

Whether through discussion, games, or role playing, the peer group creates a safe space to practice emerging skills. Therapists offer empathetic guidance on applying skills to real-life situations. To ensure intimate peer connections, groups are made up of just 6 to 8 same-aged children. Sessions last 60-90 minutes depending on developmental stage. Groups meet weekly or biweekly as progress is made.

Individual Orientation

Before joining group sessions, each child meets individually with the clinician(s) to establish goals and address any concerns. This orientation builds trust and readiness to share in the group environment.


Each session involves learning new strategies to manage emotions, improve relationships, and show self-compassion. 

Children gain tools like:

  • Mindfulness
  • Distress tolerance
  • Asking for needs
  • Walking away respectfully

Practice Exercises

Whether through discussion, games, or role playing, the peer group creates a safe space to practice emerging skills. Therapists offer empathetic guidance on applying skills to real-life situations. 


Children collaborate to brainstorm how to implement their new strategies at school, home, or with friends. Goal-setting and group accountability motivate progress. 

As children hone coping abilities, gain peer validation, and replace negative behaviors with healthy life skills, they will cultivate resilience and confidence. 

Our average program duration is 16-20 weekly sessions.

Take the First Step Toward Healing

If your child is struggling with overwhelming emotions, isolation, or conflict, our compassionate team is here to help. We offer flexible in-person or virtual sessions to remove barriers to care. 

To get started:

Schedule a Consultation

Call us or complete our simple online form to request a free consultation. This allows us to understand your child’s unique needs and challenges and determine if our Group C-DBT program is a good fit.

Undergo an Evaluation

Your child will meet with a clinician for a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation vital for tailoring an effective treatment plan. Evaluations often involve discussing needs, family dynamics, symptoms, and goals.

Join the Group Sessions

Once enrolled, your child will join our small, intimate groups therapy to begin building life-changing skills surrounded by validation and support. We’ll be there providing guidance every step of the way.

Contact Ethos Wellness Today

Don’t wait to seek support. Early intervention can help children develop healthy emotional habits that transform their trajectory. 

To learn more about our group C-DBT program, reach out to us at (713) 324-3754 or Together, we will navigate the path toward hope, healing, and lifelong wellness.

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