One of my primary areas of focus is for teenagers and their parents to learn to communicate more effectively, argue less, help teens manage their emotions. I combine individual therapy for your teen with parent-teen DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) based skill coaching. DBT is a widely researched and often effective modality to assist teens to improve their emotional coping skills. More information about DBT is found on the "Approach" page.
Teenagers may benefit from therapy for the following reasons:
- Increasing meltdowns and extreme mood swings.
- Your teen is crying more than usual, isolating from friends, and appears more withdrawn.
- Involvement with drugs, alcohol, and/or negative peers.
- Increasingly poor performance in school.
- Fighting or arguing at school or home.
- Bullying others, being bullied by others including cyber-bullying.
- There has been conflict in the family such as divorce.
- Facing issues with sexuality and gender identity.
- Self harm or voicing suicidal thoughts.
If your teen has recently been in an inpatient hospital for more serious related mental health issues, I will consult with you and develop a plan to help you and your teen resolve these issues and restore harmony to your family.
I also work with many college aged students age 18-25, which is time of many life transitions. You may find yourself feeling increasingly anxious or depressed during these adjustment periods. Some contributing factors may include generational "norms" and beliefs. For example, it is extremely common to believe that nothing but fast, easy, and completely perfect results are acceptable. Perfectionism can accompany fears of failure, rejection, and even fears of success. This can leave one feeling totally paralyzed about making decisions concerning relationships, jobs, and school. If you are struggling with life adjustments or symptoms impacting your mental health, solution-focused, skill based therapy may assist you greatly. Stress management, emotion management, mindfulness, and healthy relationship skills are essential to feeling happier. Often times a parent/adult-child family component can help you alleviate symptoms and improve relationship skills.
Relationship counseling can assist you at any stage of a relationship. I help couples learn to communicate more effectively and compassionately in a way that helps build respect in your relationship. You and your partner can learn the skills needed to build your friendship, increase emotional intimacy, manage conflict and incompatibilities, and support each other in reaching your life goals. Couples counseling can help you resolve deeper relationship conflicts and create a happier, more connected life together.
Anxiety & Depression
Anxiety and Depression are often closely linked, although reasons for this are not entirely clear. Anxiety is a normal part of life, but therapy can help when it gets in your way of forming relationships, taking tests, or even day to day activities. Therapy helps you learn skills to manage anxiety symptoms.
Sadness is also a normal part of life, but when it sticks around for too long, depression can develop as well. Some people are born with a pre-disposition, and you may experience overwhelming symptoms to the point where your life feels impossible. Therapy can also help you understand how thoughts and beliefs cause depression to persist. Often times, when new beliefs and coping skills are learned, depression can be alleviated.
If you know you have Bipolar Disorder or you wonder if you may be struggling with symptoms, therapy and medication management is usually essential for your well being. If you don't already have a doctor, I will help with referrals. The skills taught in DBT can CBT and be very effective to assist you with balancing the extreme emotional highs and lows that are part of this condition. Living with Bipolar symptoms can feel very isolating and never ending. However, with the right therapist and support network, relief is available.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a natural reaction when you have experienced any kind of traumatic event. Not everyone that experiences trauma will develop this condition, and symptoms can manifest weeks or even years after an event. PTSD is a disorder that is commonly associated with the trauma of combat. However, symptoms may develop from experiencing or witnessing a number of events, including but not limited to childhood traumas, sexual assault, suicide, and death. PTSD also impacts many crisis workers, paramedics, and law enforcement officers, who are often people that may not want to get help. Everyone deserves to feel well and be supported, and therapy can be a safe space to start this healing process.
If you have come to this website and you believe you are feeling suicidal or having a mental health emergency, please know that you have options and you can call 911, or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255(TALK).