||Walking on eggshells around your child? Worried he's not developing skills he'll need for a happy life? Exhausted trying to meet her needs? I help parents and children to understand and bring out the best in each other, to identify and manage conflict and obstacles with respect, courage--even joy.
You want the best for your child, your child passionately wants to be as masterful as you. But obstacles arise, some invisible or seemingly from out of nowhere, that slow or stop progress--separations, losses, anxiety, depression, ADHD, developmental delays.
My specialty is early intervention. With me you'll develop knowledge and skills for you and your child to regulate moods and actions; communicate thoughts, feelings, values with respect; identify and solve problems so all family members can move toward achieving their values.
I use a variety of approaches to help each client to understand his/her own values, and the obstacles that get in the way of achieving them. Experiential play therapy provides your child a safe space to express anger, worries, fears, while providing mastery experiences to help him move forward with confidence. Parent Effectiveness Training skills help you attune to your child as the most important and powerful person in his life, while you gain understanding and cooperation. Cognitive Therapy helps you both really own your values, and the skills to achieve them.
We'll work hard and have fun!
||I started working with children and their families over 20 years ago as a Montessori teacher, and began to give parenting classes when parents wanted to know how they could gain the cooperation from their children they observed in my classroom. But it was the children and families who were struggling who interested me the most, so I returned to school for an MSW degree. I have worked with children of all ages in a wide range of families with a wide range of problems, first in inner city Los Angeles, then at the Long Beach Child Guidance Center, then at Rady Children's Outpatient Psychiatry clinic in San Diego. I am now in private practice in Encinitas
I work from the value-based perspective that children have a tremendous desire to master themselves and their world, and that people in general are most deeply motivated by achieving their values, which they can do wonderfully without hurting others. To that end, I've looked for and found specific trainings to develop skills and strategies to understand motivation for change, deeply hidden obstacles, and ways to overcome those obstacles. I place a strong emphasis on real life experience, so that with me you will not only talk about things, you'll be able to do them, sometimes starting with metaphor (as in Sandplay therapy).
In the process of searching for and studying various parenting classes, I found Thomas Gordon's Parent Effectiveness Training course. I now teach it several times a year in the Solana Beach area. Dr. Gordon had a remarkable respect for the needs of both parents and children, and an ability to identify and teach essential skills to help parents meet those needs. His P.E.T. course is a well-designed step-by-step combination of listening, discussion and practice--with some good-natured fun in each session. Parents are challenged by the process and deeply pleased with the increased understanding, respect and cooperation between them and their children (and others) that result. Sometimes parents start the course thinking their child needs therapy, then find that as parents they can develop the skills to effectively help their children learn to solve their problems.
I would be honored to have the opportunity to work with you, to help you identify and achieve the values that make your life, and your children's lives, the rich, often joyful experiences you all deserve.
||Master in Social Work, Cal State Long Beach
Master in Education, Loyola College in Baltimore
Certificate in Play Therapy, UC San Diego, Registered Play Therapist
Certificate in Sandplay, UC San Diego
Parent Effectiveness Training, Certified Instructor
Advanced Applications in Cognitive Therapy, with David Burns, MD
Experiential Play Therapy with Byron Norton (current)
Positive Discipline Parent Educator
The Incredible Years preschool treatment program, instructor
DIR Floortime Basic Course
Association Montessori International Assistant to Infancy Diploma
Resources for Infant Educarers Level I
||National Association of Social Workers
California Society for Clinical Social Work
California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
San Diego North County California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
Association for Play Therapy
Association Montessori Internationale
North American Montessori Teachers Association
Earliest Relationships Network