What Are My Qualifications?
I have a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, and a Ph.D. in General Psychology. I have been trained professionally in TBRI (Trust-Based Relational Intervention). TBRI is a research-based relational intervention for adopted children. I was then able to attend the three-week long TBRI research camp with my own child and receive the parent training which impacted me the most. My greatest qualification is that I have walked through some dark, hard places in our own home with my child, and we are now thriving and continuing to progress. This is true despite the fact that every professional we sought help from, from counselors to psychiatrists to neurologists, gave us a very hopeless prognosis about our future. My educational background has given me the tools to coach other families through those dark, hard places that seem so hopeless. My own children have always motivated me and continue to motivate me to research the most effective strategies for each child.
Is Your Child Struggling With Being Adopted?
Is your child struggling with anger, confusion or sadness with their adoption story? Are you struggling knowing how to answer your child’s questions about their adoption losses? Do you feel ill equipped to walk with them through that journey? Many children that I work with don’t have acting out behaviors, instead they have a well of sadness and longing in them that is born out of their adoption loss. Adoption loss and grief manifests itself in different ways at different ages and often comes in waves. I am passionate about helping children make sense of their own stories and equipping parents to support their children in that process.
How I Can Help?
My passion is to use both my professional training and my experience as a parent to help adopted children thrive within their families. I work almost exclusively with children who are adopted or in foster care and really “know” these kids. I look back at the years and thousands of dollars we wasted on professionals that didn’t “know” our kids. We would not have seen the dark days that we did if we had found the right professional sooner.
I enjoy helping parents see the “real child” behind the behaviors. I have a heart for the parents I work with that have turned into parents they never thought they would be. I have been there myself, and I know it can turn around with the right help. I also help parents and children make sense of their adoption story. I have walked with families from adoption preparation all the way through the reality of adoption.
What Role Does The Parent Play?
I look at the parent(s) as the change agent in the parent/child dyad. Although every client is unique, I usually see the parent with the child. My goal is to give the parent(s)s tools that they can watch me use and take out of the office and into the home, the school, and the real world. Parents cannot get these tools unless they are actively participating in the process. I know that no one loves your child the way you do, and no one is as motivated to help them heal.
Do I Ever See A Child Alone?
Yes, I do consult with children individually at times. It really depends on what the child is dealing with and the age of the child. Often teenagers wish to be seen without their parents. I always encourage parental communication. I understand that parents are the “changing agents” in their children’s lives. I only facilitate that change. My goal is for the parents to have new insights or tools to take home and use at the end of every consulting session, even if the child is being seen individually.
What Is The Difference Between Consulting And Counseling?
Consulting is not psychotherapy. I do not provide any diagnosis, mental health assessments, or treatment of mental health issues. I am not a Mental Health Provider; therefore, there cannot be any insurance coverage for services. There are some flexible medical accounts that allow coverage for consulting, but no insurance company does. I can at any time, based on the parent(s) concern or my own, make a referral to a Mental Health Provider.