Individual and Family Therapy
Children, Adolescents, Adults
Individuals affected by Autism and their families welcome!
Please explore my website to learn more about me and my practice. If you have any questions or need additional information about my counseling services, I would encourage you to contact me.
A Little Bit About Me
As with many therapists, my life’s journey has had impact on my chosen profession. Although I come to this profession later in my life, my experiences provide some valuable insights and help me to better understand and empathize with others. After completing a bachelor’s degree in psychology and music, I was able to support my spouse as he pursued his graduate study in chemistry. Upon his graduation we moved to the St. Louis area and I spent the next years primarily focusing on raising my children.
As many of you know, raising children is not for the faint of heart. When my youngest child was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS), at 8 years of age, it took me several years to really figure out what this meant. I have since come to understand that my child is challenged with a neurodevelopmental disorder that places him on the Autism Spectrum. Having a child with a hidden disability affects the whole family. Many of the things that I struggled to understand required me to think and communicate differently. As I worked with my child, I began to see links to others within the family that had similar struggles. I literally had to put the pieces together as many other individuals and their family’s must in order to move forward in a positive direction. Has it been difficult? Yes, of course! Would I change it now? No way! Without this experience, I would have not discovered that an individual’s gifts may not always fall within traditional boundaries – ‘super powers’ come in a variety of shapes, sizes and strengths and can often be hidden from sight.
As my children grew I decided that it was time for me to return to school and complete a graduate program (a life long aspiration). Since my undergraduate days, I always wanted to pursue counseling and decided that it was a time to return to a course of study that would allow me to pursue this dream. I applied to graduate school and was accepted! I spent the next several years working toward completing this degree and now I proudly serve as a licensed professional counselor.
In addition to my work, which I enjoy greatly, I love to read, bike, garden, play with my family’s two adopted mutts and I am desperately trying to enjoy working out at the gym (this is no small feat)!
I am a relational counselor and use this approach in my work with individuals and families alike. My approach, based on Structural Family Therapy, is strength based and supported by years of positive evidence of its effectiveness. When I look at an individual that may be struggling, I consider the context in which their problem occurs. As humans, we are reactive. Our reaction is a response to the communication that we are receiving within a given context. One must also consider other factors that may be in play, such as individual roles and unwritten rules that may be in place. When problems are considered from a relational perspective, small adjustments can quickly lead to positive changes.
You can learn more about Structural Family therapy at the following websites: