As a parent, I have found tarot to be an extremely
helpful tool. When my children were growing up, often
they would have issues that seemed to need a deep,
spiritual answer that only tarot could provide.
In my work as a professional tarot reader, I have found
children to be very curious and open to tarot. In some
ways, they are easier to read than adults because their
mindset has not been colored by life experiences -- and
they seem to have more fun with the process. That being
said, one must take great care when reading for a young
person as they can be vulnerable, may take things too
literally or in some cases may only hear what they want
Here are a few things to keep in mind if you are
considering reading tarot for children:
1. Have a parent present if they are under 18.
Never do a reading without the parent's permission.
Some parents may not be comfortable with tarot and
you do not want to cross that line. I prefer to have the
parent in the room so that they can actually hear what
I am really saying rather than getting their child's
interpretation of my reading. Be clear on your age
requirements as well -- for example, I do not like
reading for anyone under 14 as I feel that they begin
to ask better questions once they enter the teen years.
Set a limit that feels right for you.
2. Set the tone with a light-hearted attitude.
Some children may feel fearful about tarot cards and
may be worried that they'll get a "bad fortune." I
always start off with a silly joke such as: "You are
not allowed to ask questions about Justin Beiber" and
that seems to lift the mood.
3. Don't use a "scary" deck.
This is not the time to pull out anything with creepy
imagery. In fact, I recommend getting the most
innocuous deck you can find. Good choices are
The Connolly Deck, Whimsical Tarot, or Hanson Roberts.
You also may want to avoid any deck with nudity as
that may make them (or the parents!) uncomfortable.
4. Use lingo that they can understand.
Talking in arcane, esoteric terms will be boring and
they will quickly lose interest. On the other hand,
don't talk down to them either. Young people deserve
as much respect as adults. Repeat things as needed and
get feedback from them to make sure that they understand
what you are talking about.
5. Refrain from acting like the parent.
In other words, don't lecture, admonish or act judgmental.
Your role is a trusted advisor and friend. I've had many
clients over the years who have started coming to me as
a teenager -- one of the reasons they continue to see me
is because I have never tried to parent them through my
6. Be sensitive.
A young person may have issues that seem silly to you
but may be very important to them. A good rule of thumb:
remember what it was like to be that age.
7. Always end on a positive note.
Don't let them walk away feeling hopeless. If the reading
is negatively slanted, be sure to offer positive advice and
look for options. And be very careful about giving a
prediction that may become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
(For example: I've heard a horror story with tragic
results about a reader telling a young person that they
would become an alcoholic.). Provide encouragement
and let them know that they have the key to create any
future that they desire.
A reading with you may be the first exposure that a
child has to the tarot. Take it seriously but keep your
vibe playful and sensitive.
"Children are like wet cement. Whatever falls on them
makes an impression." ~ Dr. Haim Ginott
Theresa Reed aka The Tarot Lady has been reading tarot
for thirty years and working as a professional tarot
reader for two decades. She is an intuitive tarot
reader and is known for her practical, strategic and
no-nonsense approach. In addition to reading tarot, she
is an avid blogger, tarot mentor, yoga teacher, social
media geek and wannabe chef.