It’s not easy being a parent, especially when our kids are struggling or facing challenges that keep them from enjoying life the way all kids should. I know.
When adults are present to support a child’s experiences and help the child’s stress levels come down, stresses may be tolerable. Examples of tolerable stress include loss of a loved one, illness or injury, or poverty when a caring adult helps the child adapt. Some stresses are also thought of as positive stress, or everyday challenges. In experiences of positive stress, the system can return to a calm state in a relatively short period of time. When children are faced with stress or trauma, the hormone cortisol is released after the brain sends a signal from the hypothalamus to the adrenal cortex, which is a gland above the kidney. High levels of cortisol can cause brain cells to die and reduce the connections between the cells in certain areas of the brain, harming the vital brain circuits. In other words, the wiring of the house can be severely damaged if a child is exposed to repeated and longtime stress without the assistance of a caring adult. Babies with strong, positive emotional bonds to their caregivers show consistently lower levels of cortisol in their brains.
I know because I’ve heard it countless times from the parents in my office and in my work in the community, and I know because I’ve experienced it first hand with my own kids, in my own family. The fear, frustration, and anxiety we feel when our children are hurting can be excruciating. And it’s even worse when we don’t know where to turn for help.
When your child is struggling—in terms of handling emotions, making good decisions, succeeding socially or educationally, dealing with physical and health limitations, or anything else—I am here to help and I am here for you.
My career began in 1987 working with children and adolescents and I have continued to work with both children and adolescents and their families over the years. In the past 10 years, I have expanded my practice to working with pregnant mothers, expectant fathers and the 0-5 population. I am trained to work with children ages 0-18 using a variety of child-centered and play therapy approaches. I received extensive training working with abused and traumatized children though my work at residential treatment facilities as well as working for County Mental Health Services. Play therapy is to children what talk therapy is to adults. Play therapy utilizes play, children's natural medium of expression, to help them express their feelings more easily through toys instead of words. Play Therapy is used to successfully treat children experiencing a variety of symptoms.
I have worked with CHILDREN & FAMILIES since 1987.
my areas of expertise include the following:
- Anxiety (test anxiety, separation anxiety, social anxiety, OCD, phobia's, generalized anxiety)
- Difficulties with Emotional Regulation
- Behavior Problems
- Somatic Complaints
- Peer Problems
- Grief & Loss
- Attachment Issues
- Parental Divorce
- Physical, Sexual, and Emotional Abuse
- Physical Illness & Injury
- Exposure to Traumatic Events
Meditations for Children