Our providers view change in the system of interaction between family members. We emphasize family relationships as an important factor in your psychological health.
Regardless of the origin of the problem and whether the client considers it an “individual” or “family” issue, having family involvement is often beneficial. This is commonly accomplished by the direct participation of family members in Family Therapy sessions. A family therapist has the skills and expertise to influence conversation in a way that catalyzes the strength, wisdom, and support from the entire family.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) has been shown to be an effective method for improving mental health and quality of life for concerns ranging from generalized anxiety to depression to eating disorders and more serious concerns.
Unlike other forms of therapy, CBT focuses on the “right now,” rather than deep-diving into the cause of the problem. It helps clients to recognize their own unproductive thoughts and behaviors in the moment and provides methods to change them.
CBT allows for self-reflection and self-correction.
Psychological problems are, at least in part, due to:
- Unhelpful ways of thinking
- Unhelpful learned behaviors
- Decrease and manage symptoms of presenting concern
- Decrease and replace unhelpful ways of thinking
- Decrease and replace unhelpful behaviors
- Develop effective coping methods
- Resolve relationship conflicts
- Cope with grief/loss
- And more…
- Learn to recognize perception distortions, and reevaluate in the context of reality
- Understand behaviors and motivations of others
- Develop confidence in self
- Adapt problem-solving skills to difficult situations
- Face fears
- Utilize role playing to prepare for upcoming situations
- Use techniques to calm mind and body
CBT has been supported in both psychological research and clinical practice, and has been found to be as or more helpful than comparable techniques and medications.
Couples and families are often concerned about starting counseling due to the potential for revealing relationship damage, thus causing “distress.”
Re-establishing security may require confronting unpleasant emotions or situations, however more often than not the problems stem from one person “jumping to conclusions” about how others feel.
CBT helps couples and families discover:
1. If and how each person jumps to conclusions (even without realizing it)
2. How the couple/family communicates
3. How you and your family’s behavior impacts others
4. How prior experiences may influence negative thoughts
5. How those negative thoughts influence behavior
6. How the influenced behavior impacts the partner/family
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Plus (CBT+)
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Plus (CBT+) is an integration of multiple therapeutic techniques, specifically:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT)
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
All of these therapies are evidence-based and emphasize approaching problems from different perspectives.
CBT+ allows for a broader view of the presenting concern, and incorporates real-world problems into the framework. For example, CBT+ integrates concerns such as poverty, racism, and marginalization into the approach to treatment.
CBT+ also adds a stronger emphasis to relationships and dives further into the history of the client.
- Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) is an evidence-based, modified form of CBT which is specifically designed to help children and their parents overcome the negative and often devastating effects of trauma, especially PTSD symptoms.
Taking a trauma-informed approach to family therapy can help parents learn optimal ways to support their child and the skills their child is learning in therapy. It also teaches parents effective parenting skills associated with dealing with behaviors that accompany trauma. Improvements developed by TF-CBT have been shown to be long term – parental emotional distress, child’s anxiety, and related symptoms still showed improvement 1 and 2 years after completing therapy.Trauma may be caused by:
Sexual or physical abuse
Traumatic loss of a loved one
Exposure to violence – domestic, school, community
Exposure to disaster – weather, terrorist attacks, war
Serious medical procedures, operations, or hospitalizations
And more…TF-CBT can help develop skills such as:
Interpersonal trustTF-CBT can address concerns including:
Internalization of feelings
TF-CBT can be helpful for kids ages 3-18 and their families. This approach can also be used to help couples and individuals overcome trauma. TF-CBT is tailored to each child and family to be developmentally appropriate and conducive to each situation.
TF-CBT approach has three core stages of therapy, Stabilization, Trauma Narrative, and Integration/Consolidation. Each of these stages are broken down into individual steps. The acronym of these steps is PRACTICE.
StabilizationP – Psycho-Education and Parenting SkillsThe therapist helps the family learn about trauma, PTSD, common behavioral concerns associated with trauma, and validation of feelings.R – Relaxation SkillsLearning relaxation skills helps reverse physiological effects caused by trauma, and includes a variety of techniques such as mindfulness, progressive muscle relaxation, and focused breathing.A – Affective Regulation SkillsAffective regulation skills help each member of the family to recognize upsetting states and learn to manage their feelings. This includes developing problem-solving, anger management, and positive distraction skills. It’s also a time for the family to build trust and work toward emotional safety.C – Cognitive Processing SkillsCognitive processing skills help each individual connect thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and replace unhelpful thoughts and behaviors with beneficial ones (as in CBT). Cognitive processing poses two key questions: Is it accurate? Is it helpful?
This process allows each participant to create a “window of tolerance” for communicating about trauma. Once both feeling and thinking are within a tolerable range and the family members are present and trying, then trauma can begin to be processed.
2. Trauma NarrativeT – Trauma Narration and ProcessingCreating a trauma narrative is a key component to processing a traumatic event, and it includes the telling of the individual’s story – the who, what, when, where and associated emotions with each component. Creating a comprehensive narrative is often difficult and deeply emotional, but is a core step in understanding where you have been and how to move forward. Once the trauma narrative is complete, each person can contribute their narrative and begin to understand how the trauma impacts their shared experience.
3. Integration and ConsolidationI – In Vivo Mastery of Trauma RemindersIn life trauma reminders often cause psychological and/or physiological responses. This step helps to recognize the stimuli that cause the trauma response, and learn how to overcome avoiding these reminders and cope with them as they emerge.C – Conjoint Child-Caregiver SessionsSessions with the family help to develop communication about the trauma and moving forward. This step is a time to address topics such as safety plans and trauma responses.E – Enhancing SafetyThe final step is to apply the processing and coping skills and positive insights to current life and your life moving forward. It helps create a comprehensive toolbox of strategies and reminders to handle trauma, stress, and conflict moving forward including co-regulation of emotions and strategies for finding solutions based in emotional support and understanding.
It is well documented that the most harm to children during and after a divorce is how parents handle themselves and their interactions with each other, not the divorce itself.
Co-parent therapy is designed to help divorced or separated parents work together to best meet the needs of the child(ren). Even when the parents aren’t together, kids still need love and support – this can become interrupted by emotions from the breakup and divorce process.
The relationship between co-parents can have a strong impact on the emotional and mental development and wellbeing of the children. Co-parenting therapy helps parents learn how to develop a new cordial, working relationship to best support the kids.
It helps both parents have an active role in child rearing, problem-solving, and decision-making, and can help eliminate dysfunctional, emotionally-charged interactions.
Co-Parenting therapy helps teach both parents how to:
- Cooperate: Exchange information about the child(ren), support and respect the other as a parent, and divide the labor of childrearing.
- Minimize conflict: Limit undermining, criticism, and blame toward the other parent, as well as minimizing arguments/fights about childrearing.
- Triangulate: Develop the child(ren)’s relationship with each parent individually, while avoiding their involvement in parental conflicts. This includes avoiding:
- Using the child(ren) as messengers to the other parent.
- Venting to the child(ren) about the other parent.
- Making the child(ren) feel like they have to choose between parents.
- Communicate with a child-centered approach:
- Separate the anger, resentment, and hurt from the relationship with the other parent in order to prioritize the child(ren).
- Treat co-parenting as a business-like partnership. This allows conversations to be focused on what’s important whether in-person, on the phone, or through email/text.
- Keep all conversations focused on the child(ren)’s needs, not yours or your ex-partner’s.
- Make requests of the other parent, not demands.
- Listen to the other parent. Listening is especially important in co-parenting in order to minimize conflict and prioritize the child(ren)’s wellbeing.
Documented Benefits of Co-Parenting for Children
Children of all ages with parents who have adopted co-parenting practices have been shown to have:Significant improvements in:
-Internalization of symptoms – Ex. Being withdrawn, nervous, or irritable, feeling lonely, sad, unwanted, or unloved, etc.
-Externalization of symptoms – Ex. Acting out, lying, breaking rules/laws, showing disregard for others, defiance, and/or vindictiveness, etc.
-Social functioning skills
-Attachment-Improvement in mental and emotional health
-Knowledge that they (the children) are more important than the conflict that ended the marriage
-Feelings of security
-Consistency between households leading to better adjustment
-Improved development of problem-solving and communication skills
Toddlers with co-parenting parents show increased compliance and decreased aggression compared to those who do not.
Low parental cooperation has been linked with passivity, problems with attention, and lower math grades of 3rd grade students.
Additionally, it has been shown to negatively impact the child’s relationship to each of their parents, and increase negative behavior toward each parent.
It also may be a factor in antisocial behavior in children.
Please note that co-parenting therapy is relational and therefore will not be covered by insurance. For cash pay rates, please call the office.
- Eating Psychology
Eating Psychology Coaching is an exciting and cutting edge approach developed by the Institute for the Psychology of Eating.
It effectively addresses concerns including:
Body image challenges
Various nutrition related health concerns
Oftentimes, our eating challenges are connected to work, money, relationships, family, intimacy, life stress, and so much more.
According to the Institute for the Psychology of Eating – In America:
- Nearly 70% of adults are classified as overweight or obese
- ~90% of women are unhappy with their appearance
- 81% of 10 year old girls experience a fear of being fat
- 97% of women confess they have at least one “I hate my body moment” each day
- ~75% of all diseases could be prevented with better nutrition
- ~108 million individuals are on a diet
- 99% of those who diet gain back the weight they lose within a year
- Within a decade, 67% of the population is projected to have some form of diabetes
Eating Psychology coaches are able to support you with both strategies and nutrition principles.
The strategies provided are doable, sustainable, and nourishing and, most importantly, yield results.
For eating psychology articles, look here.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
Please see our Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) page here.
Please see our Bloom – Maternal and Family Planning Therapy page here.
- Pride Program
Please see our Pride Program and Resilience Group page here.
Meet our Providers
Our staff is trained to provide a broad range of therapies such as couples therapy, family therapy, and individual therapy for children, teens and adults.our providers