Often, symptoms that are being exhibited by children are not a result of something being “wrong” with the child, but rather are being manifested by the child as a result of dysfunctional patterns between their parents or within the family.
Attachment theory tells us that a child who has a secure attachment is more apt to be a bigger risk-taker and hence more of an explorer of their universe. They are also able to adapt more easily to the variety of life situations that will be thrown at them. The comfort and security that come from a parent form a safe-haven which provides a buffer against the effects of stress and uncertainty and an optimal environment for the development of the personality.
Emotionally Focused Therapy, whether involving the parents, or the parent and the child is based on attachment theory and helps foster that secure and comforting safe-haven.