Are you here because you are worried about your child? Maybe you have watched nervously as your child cries about attending school, gets tummy aches, and has fears about things that don't make sense to you. Perhaps you've been watching helplessly as your teen seems to be increasingly overwhelmed by the demands of their schedule, study, and social life.
You've come to the right place if you are seeking support for your child. Therapy will help your child learn to build skills to move through their world with confidence and compassion. Through working with me your child will develop skills to lower their anxiety level, speak about their true feelings, and learn new ways of managing their thoughts. Together, we will strengthen the connection that you have with your child so that you can establish regular communication and trust.
I have been successful at connecting with adolescents through artwork, play therapy, sand tray therapy, and The Daring Way™. As a way of adding to their toolbox, I have found mindfulness exercises, deep breathing techniques, and guided imagery to be effective at lowering anxiety and managing depression. Most kids are creative beings and we often see their fears come to light through play, writing, and art. Creativity in the therapeutic setting helps us to understand what is holding your child back and how to best support them.
What Should I Expect?
Expect me to include you in most of the sessions if your child is not yet in junior high. When they are younger we absolutely need a team approach to support your child. In session, you might observe the use of art work, play, reading books, and working on ways to self-soothe through breathing, positive self-talk, and physical practices.
If your child is in junior high or high school they may benefit from one-on-one time with me. If this is the case, I will update you regularly to share progress. It is important that your teen or tween feel safe in the therapy room so I will not be playing telephone and dishing on their innermost secrets. I will, however, support your child in communicating with you directly through family therapy sessions. If your child is ever at-risk for self-harm you can bet that I will be in contact with you in order to keep them safe.
Exactly How Will You Help My Child?
The Daring Way™
I am a Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator (CDWF). The Daring Way™ is a highly experiential methodology based on the research of Dr. Brené Brown. The method was designed for work with individuals, couples, families, work teams, and organizational leaders. It can be facilitated in clinical, educational, and professional settings. During the process we explore topics such as vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. We examine the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that are holding us back and we identify the new choices and practices that will move us toward more authentic and wholehearted living. The primary focus is on developing shame resilience skills and developing daily practices that transform the way we live, love, parent, and lead. Further information is available at www.thedaringway.com
Children learn and process information about their world through play. Play is critical to brain development and allows a pathway for caregivers to communicate with their child. When closely observed, it becomes clear how children utilize play to express their experiences and feelings about themselves. It is my goal to provide a safe and nurturing environment for children to relay their feelings, thoughts, and experiences through play and artwork. Typically, caregivers are a central part of their child's healing and are involved in the therapeutic process.
Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT)
PCIT is an empirically validated intervention that can address both externalizing and internalizing problems displayed by young children. These children may be experiencing emotional, behavioral, and developmental problems that impact the entire family. In this model, caregivers play a central role by actively learning and utilizing parenting skills that energize and build strong parent-child connections. Initially, therapy focuses on bonding and practicing new communication patterns. With progress, therapy will transition to supporting the parent with practicing new skills and discipline practices to manage their child's behaviors. Traditionally, PCIT is practiced in an office with two rooms and a one-way mirror. In my practice, I use a modified version of PCIT to support families.