Jen Palma

Licensed Professional Counselor and Registered Play Therapist


Have you been worried about your child’s behavior and not been unable to find a counselor or therapist who specializes in children?  The process of finding a therapist for your child can be so overwhelming that maybe you decided to put it off.  Often it takes a crisis or big family change before children are brought to therapy.  When you finally find a therapist, you may worry that your child won’t want to go or won’t talk.  Parents shouldn’t have to worry about dragging their child to therapy.  I use the healing powers of play and laughter to help children and families feel comfortable in therapy and get the support they need.

When children are exhibiting behavioral issues or dealing with family stress, they often don’t not have the tools to communicate verbally what is going on.  You may notice changes in their moods or behavior.  All behavior is communication, and their behavior is communicating there is a problem and they need support.  Play therapy empowers children to heal using their natural language of play.  

In play therapy, we will work together to understand the cause of the behaviors and develop skills to navigate the challenges.  Play therapy allows the child to “play it out” and practice the coping skills in a supportive environment.  When a skill is learned through play it takes less practice to be applied than in other situations.

My Approach & Values

I help parents support children who are struggling with stress, anxiety, and depression.  I believe that relationships can be healing.   I have been trained in The Nurtured Heart Approach which is a relationship-based approach to parenting and building up a child’s inner wealth.  I also teach children about having a Growth Mindset which helps empower children and teaches them to become more resilient after setbacks.  These approaches can be  taught to parents to help support their children.  I help teach parents how to improve their connection with their child to reduce family conflict.  

I work with children ages 3 and up for individual and family therapy.  Parents can also participate in parent coaching sessions to learn skills to support their child’s progress.  I work collaboratively with the parents, schools and other involved agencies to support your child.  With my background in education and experience working in a school setting, I can support you in dealing with the child study team and help develop an individualized education plan that meets your child’s needs.  I use a combination of play and expressive arts therapies tailored to meet your child’s needs.  Play therapy has been proven to be an effective treatment for a variety of children’s issues and parent/child relationship stress.   


My Experience

  • Care Coordinator at Performcare – Crisis hotline for children and families, New Jersey Children’s System of Care
  • Program Director for SPEC and RTC group homes with New Jersey Mentor
  • School counselor at Nu View Academy, specialized school for youth with behavioral and psychiatric issues
  • Therapist at New Jersey Mentor for treatment home program
  • Case Manager at Linkages, program for homeless women and children

    My Education

  • Bachelor’s in Elementary Education and Psychology, The College of New Jersey
  • Master’s of Education in Counseling Psychology, Rutgers University
  • Post-Master’s Certificate in Play Therapy, Monmouth University

Contact Me

Ask a question or book an appointment below. For emergencies call 911 or visit your nearest hospital

807 Ocean Road, Point Pleasant, NJ 08742