The holidays are a difficult time of year for so many of us. Thanksgiving, in particular, can be especially hard for some. For instance, how can one be “thankful” when there are so many reasons to feel the sting of loss? If being together for Thanksgiving feels more like a time to grieve than a time to be thankful, what is one supposed to do?
My goal as a counselor is to help adults, adolescents, and children by providing a space to be heard, process life’s challenges, and develop the necessary skills to thrive mentally, physically, and spiritually. My overall approach to therapy involves cognitive behavioral methods (exploring one’s thoughts and beliefs relative to emotions and behaviors), as well as narrative therapy (engaging personal stories that view people as separate from their problems). I view counseling as a collaborative effort in helping clients to recognize strengths, identify needs, understand conflicts, discover new options, set personal development goals, and make informed choices.
Perhaps part of why suicide is such a heavy topic is that so many of us have been affected by it in some way. In 2017, my close friend experienced a heartbreaking tragedy when his brother died by suicide. In addition to feeling the weight of the loss being experienced by my friend and his family, I distinctly remember this devastating event being part of what inspired me to pursue counseling as a career.
When we think of diversity, a common assumption is that people from diverse backgrounds will automatically find their way into our lives. However, this is rarely the case. More often, our default setting as humans is to surround ourselves with people who are similar to ourselves.
A teenager I used to mentor, who for privacy purposes will be referred to as Jason, was at the time a seventeen-year-old male in a transitional stage of life. He was in the process of earning both a high school diploma and an associate’s degree when I met him, which is one example of maturity that seems well-above average for his age. At the same time, Jason was yearning for direction and was longing to pursue his dream of professional theater
If you are a parent, you undoubtedly have heard your fair share of parenting advice (whether solicited or unsolicited). Unfortunately, the advice we encounter is not always helpful. Some say discipline is harmful to children, while others say to rule the home with an iron fist. Some say kids need all the support they can get, while others say it is better to let them figure things out on their own.