Waterford Youth and Family Services provides counseling services to Waterford families. Free/reduced fee counseling or case management services are offered to Waterford children between the ages of 5 to 18 and their families. To schedule an appointment, or for more information about this service or to request an intake, please call: (860) 444-5848

Families must be seeking assistance with a child-related problem. Common issues include divorce, anxiety, depression, behavior management, family dynamics, and sibling rivalry. In general, services are provided on a short-term basis with up to 12 weeks of services provided. Continuation of services is determined on a case-by-case basis with consideration given to the client-clinician relationship, age of client, availability of Husky A or B insurance, family circumstances, clinical diagnosis, and waiting list. The clinicians are not available on a 24-hour basis. Clients needing on-call services are referred to other local clinicians.

Counseling services are provided on a sliding-scale fee, with a maximum payment of $30 per session. The determination of a fee is made during the initial intake. A fee may be adjusted if circumstances change during the duration of service.


The following mental health clinicians are available for afternoon and evening appointments:

  • Andrew Staunton, LCSW,

       Contractual Case Supervisor


  • Linda Cunningham, PH.D., MSW         


Grief is the body’s natural response to a loss. A loss can range from losing a job to the death of a family member. Losing someone close to you can be a very difficult transition and can have a major impact on a person’s life. It is important to note that everyone copes with grief and loss in distinct ways and there is no right way to grieve (, 2016). Some people may grieve the loss of a loved one by occupying their time with work while others may become more introverted and depressed. Regardless, following the loss of someone special will have an impact on your life. A person may experience very difficult feelings ranging from anger to depression, but it is important to note that these feeling won’t last forever. One must realize that these feelings are normal and there is no specific time frame for the grieving process (, 2016). Some common symptoms of grief include shock, anger, sadness, guilt, disbelief, and fear. Some physical symptoms may occur such as fatigue, lower immunity to infection, insomnia, weight loss or gain, and nausea (, 2016). Waterford Youth and Family Services can provide individual or group counseling and can make referrals to the proper mental health clinics to serve you and your family’s needs. The Cove offers family programs, the “Good Grief” school program for youth, professional development, Camp Erin, and a pathway to healing seminar. Camp Erin is a free summer camp for children across Connecticut who are grieving the loss of a loved one or significant person in their life. For more information or if you or a loved one is in need of assistance contact Waterford Youth and Family Services at (860) 444-5848 or contact The Cove Center for Grieving Children at


Myths and facts about grief

MYTH: The pain will go away faster if you ignore it.

Fact: Trying to ignore your pain or keep it from surfacing will only make it worse in the long run. For real healing it is necessary to face your grief and actively deal with it.

MYTH: It’s important to be “be strong” in the face of loss.

Fact: Feeling sad, frightened, or lonely is a normal reaction to loss. Crying doesn’t mean you are weak. You don’t need to “protect” your family or friends by putting on a brave front. Showing your true feelings can help them and you.

MYTH: If you don’t cry, it means you aren’t sorry about the loss.

Fact: Crying is a normal response to sadness, but it’s not the only one. Those who don’t cry may feel the pain just as deeply as others. They may simply have other ways of showing it.

MYTH: Grief should last about a year.

Fact: There is no right or wrong time frame for grieving. How long it takes can differ from person to person.

The Five Stages of Grief:

  • Denial: “This can’t be happening to me.”
  • Anger: “Why is this happening? Who is to blame?”
  • Bargaining: “Make this not happen, and in return I will ____.”
  • Depression: “I’m too sad to do anything.”
  • Acceptance: “I’m at peace with what happened.”