Child and Adolescent Therapy
Even as a child growing up on a dairy farm, I noticed the struggle that adults and children were in at times. It was scary. It also seemed that the powerful love between parents and children did not remedy conflict, therefore lack of love was not the problem. Later, when learning about children's psychological and emotional problems, labeled disorders, I realized that unique skills were required to work with children and adolescents who, contrary to popular belief, were not just small adults. Systems of communication in children and the slow and steady development of the nervous system required knowledge and skills differing from what is necessary when working with adults. Parents could help their children through learning specific parenting skills. Children can benefit from therapeutic interactions while the supportive work with parents occurs. Hope is born and often manifested in improvement in child and parent relationship and the child/adolescent increased success in functioning at home, school and community.
Marital and Relationship Therapy
Most, if not all relationships have conflicts, disagreements and confusion. Often the difference in those that succeed in handling these problems is whether the couple is able to work out a resolution plan that they follow consistently. Having the capacity to succeed at this raises hope and is the basis for future success. With repeated, effective teamwork, warmth can return to a relationship. Effectiveness at partnering and the stabilization of the home is a great reward for the work. One of the problems that affect the outcome is how soon the couple enter therapy after they have exhausted their own efforts at problem solving. If a great deal of resentment has built up, the trust issues have often cemented into a stance of distancing and defensive behaviors. The initial period will be spent assessing the intensity of these symptoms and the need for intervention with special effort to engage the couple in the process.
Family and Blended Family Therapy
The Brady Bunch-wow! How come it's not that easy? Blended families may have unique parenting and relationship problems. If love alone were enough, things would work out well without professional intervention. It is my pleasure to assist hard-working, loving people learn the skills they need to succeed in transitioning their children and themselves into a largely happy and successful family in which everyone feels at home.
From early on we realize that there are life problems that are confounding and uncomfortable. Our usual coping and problem solving approaches don't work as before. Sometimes people just require a sounding board to make decisions. In some situations a series of symptoms interrupt the ability to function adequately. In other situations, a person is interested in improving communication skills and/or relationships. Managing feelings about grief, loss and lack of confidence is difficult. In an individual therapy setting the client can process as needed, guided by a one-to-one therapeutic interaction.
The mediation process can bring resolution to conflicts and problems in coming to an agreement in multiple situations. A personal or business issue unresolved can go to the courts causing parties to lose input and control of a situation. Separation or divorce, child custody, financial and personal property issues can be resolved through mediation.