What is Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health?

Infant and early childhood mental health is synonymous with a child's healthy social-emotional development from conception through age 5. Healthy social-emotional development occurs in the context of nurturing, responsive relationships.  Social-emotional development and infant and early childhood mental health are assessed based on a child's competencies in three areas:
  • the ability to experience, regulate, and express emotions;
  • the ability to form close and secure relationships; and
  • the ability to explore the environment and learn

About Mary Allison Brown, MSW, LICSW, CMHS, IMH-E(III)

Mary Allison has a master's degree in social work (MSW) from the University of Washington and a graduate certificate in infant mental health from the Barnard Center for Infant Mental Health and Development at UW. She is a licensed clinical social worker (LICSW) and is a certified child mental health specialist. Mary Allison is endorsed by the Washington Association for Infant Mental Health as an Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist. She is a certified clinical trauma specialist. Mary Allison has completed training in Promoting First Relationships, Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Child Parent Psychotherapy (CPP), and mindfulness curriculum training with Mindful Schools. Mary Allison serves her community as a board member of the Kitsap Foster Care Association, as a member of the Kitsap Perinatal Task Force, as a member of the Infant Toddler Steering Committee with the Olympic Kitsap Peninsulas Early Learning Coalition, and as a Ready for K! facilitator with the South Kitsap School District.



Reflecting Relationships provides a wide variety of service related to infant and early childhood mental health and social-emotional development. Services are customized to the unique needs of each individual client, family, or organization.
Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Therapy Services
Infant and early childhood mental health therapy is a dyadic intervention with the caregiver and the child. The primary goal of infant mental health therapy is to strengthen the relationship between the child and the caregiver, allowing the child to build a healthy foundation for future growth and development. Infant mental health therapy services are provided using Child Parent Psychotherapy, which is an evidence-based treatment modality intended to support and strengthen the parent-child relationship as a means to restore the child’s sense of safety, attachment, and regulation.
Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC)
Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation services are designed to support early learning professionals in a variety of settings, including Head Start, Early Head Start, preschool, home visitation programs, childcare centers, and in-home childcare environments.  Mental Health consultation strengthens the capacity of staff to understand and respond appropriately to the social-emotional and mental health needs of all children and families. This results in decreased negative behaviors such as hitting, biting, tantrums, and withdrawal.  Additionally, proactively addressing each individual child’s social-emotional needs leads to improved peer relationships, resulting in a calmer, more peaceful classroom setting.
Reflective Supervision
Reflective Supervision is an essential component of providing quality infant and early childhood mental health services. Reflective Supervision utilizes a model that focuses on helping the practitioner discover their own insights in regards to families they serve. Reflective Supervision focuses on the parallel process of relationship between the provider and the parent and the parent and the child. Reflective supervision is appropriate for all early learning professionals and is required for those seeking infant mental health endorsement.
Speaking and Training
Reflecting Relationships provides professional development trainings and keynote addresses. Topics include infant and early childhood mental health and social-emotional development, adverse childhood experiences and building resilience.
Clinical Supervision
Clinical supervision is intended to meet the requirements for full clinical licensure to and to promote development of the supervises professional identity and competence.  My style of supervision is collaborative and reflective.  I encourage supervisees to look at all angles of a situation and consider the impact of family systems theory on all members of the family unit.  
Online Courses
At Reflecting Relationships, we believe in know better, do better and in the power of being a lifelong learner. That's why we're proud to offer online opportunities to make continuing education accessible for everyone.

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PO Box 538 Port Orchard, WA 98366
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