Category Archives: Parents

Preparing to Send Your Child to Kindergarten

Preparing to Send Your Child to Kindergarten

September marks a significant milestone for my family, we are sending our first child off to kindergarten.  This is definitely a time of mixed feelings at my house.  Many of you are experiencing the same transition this fall, so I thought I would put together some tips to help all of us (children and the parents) adjust as successfully as possible.   I can honestly say that I am using these same steps as much as possible to help my family prepare for the fall.

Continue reading Preparing to Send Your Child to Kindergarten

Children & Stressors

Stressors & Children: The Full Series

We all experience stress at times, including children.    The dictionary definition of stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances. As adults, we can struggle to recognize the stress that children experience and the effects that  stress has on their well-being  because it may look different than how we experience stress.  We may minimize the stress that children experience because we don’t realize how aware they are of what is going on around them.   On the other hand, we may consider their stressors not to be a “big deal.”

It’s been just over a year since I started writing the blog series addressing common stressors that children face.     At this moment there are seven posts in the series, but I am always adding more posts to the series.   I thought it would be helpful to have a complete list of all of the posts compiled in one place to make it easier to access and share them. Continue reading Stressors & Children: The Full Series

Posts for new parents

Links for New Parents

The adjustment to becoming a parent can be challenging and the experience of a perinatal mood or anxiety disorder can make things even more complicated.  Over the last few months, I have been focused on writing blog posts specifically focused on addressing the concerns that new parents have shared with me along with posts sharing information about perinatal mental health.

This post is a recap of everything that I have written for new parents and those who are supporting new parents.  I hope you find it helpful to have all of the information in one easily, accessible place. Continue reading Links for New Parents

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders

Are there other Perinatal Mood and Anxiety  Disorders? (Part Two)

Most people have heard about perinatal depression or anxiety, but there are additional mood and anxiety disorders that women can experience during pregnancy or in the postpartum period which you may not be as familiar with.   This two part series is aimed at introducing you to some of the additional perinatal mood and anxiety disorders.

In part one of this series, I highlighted Perinatal Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Perinatal Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  This post (part t two of the series) focuses on Bipolar Mood Disorders and Postpartum Psychosis. Continue reading Are there other Perinatal Mood and Anxiety  Disorders? (Part Two)

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders

Are there other Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders? (Part One)

You’ve probably heard about depression and anxiety that occur during pregnancy or the postpartum period.  You may have even read about them in my previous posts on perinatal mental health.    But you may be less familiar with the remaining perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADS).  If you or a loved one are experiencing mental health symptoms during pregnancy or in the postpartum period, but they don’t seem to fit your understanding of perinatal depression or anxiety you may want to look into some of the other perinatal mood and anxiety disorders.

What are the other perinatal mood and anxiety disorders?

  • Perinatal Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Perinatal Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Bipoloar Mood Disorders
  • Postpartum Psychosis

Continue reading Are there other Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders? (Part One)

10 Mantras for Moms

10 Mantras for Moms

A mantra is a word or a phrase that is repeated often.  Some of you may be familiar with the use of mantras in prayer or meditation, but the use of repeated phrases can also be used in more of a general way when coping with intense emotions.    Some people may consider a mantra to be an affirmation.

Many moms that I work with have found the use of mantras to be effective in helping them cope with feelings of anxiety, frustration, overwhelm, inadequacy, uncertainty, loneliness and more.  I have compiled a list of 10 mantras which may be especially helpful for moms.   As with anything, you can adapt my suggestions to fit you and your needs.

Continue reading 10 Mantras for Moms

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Where am I? What happened to me? Re-Discovering Your Identity After Becoming a Parent

The dictionary defines identity as “the condition of being oneself or itself, and not another”

Often times, people describe feeling like they have lost a bit (or a lot) of their identity as they become parents.    Some people may feel fine with this shift and others find it distressing.

I’ve heard this loss of identity presented as a concern from many women that I have encountered inside and outside of the therapy office. After their children are born, some women report that they don’t feel like themselves and struggle to find a sense of who they are outside of being a mother. Some mothers also report that they struggle in figuring out how to make time for the things that they love outside of their families because they are focused on their children and feel guilty if they shift their focus elsewhere for even brief periods of time.   These types of concerns have been shared from parents across the board including; expectant parents,  parents of infants, parents of school age children and parents of teens. Continue reading Where am I? What happened to me? Re-Discovering Your Identity After Becoming a Parent

5 Low-Key, Fun and Free Ways to Connect With Your Family This Summer

5 Low-Key, Fun and Free Ways to Connect With Your Family This Summer

It is important for families to spend time together connecting in positive ways. This is always true, but especially when families are struggling.    Some professionals say that healthy relationships need to have a ratio of at least 5 positive interactions to every 1 negative interaction.    

There are lots of small positive ways we can connect with members of our family at home, but this post is going to focus on activities outside of the home.   You may also be interested in reading my previous post, 8 Ways to Show Children You Love Them Throughout The Year,  for some additional inspiration.

During the summer months it may feel like all the “fun” activities are stressful and overwhelming because they are expensive, require navigating crowds and/or require planning.   This post is not about those types of activities. Continue reading 5 Low-Key, Fun and Free Ways to Connect With Your Family This Summer

Counseling

What should I expect during my first counseling session?

One of the most common questions that I receive from potential clients is about what to expect from the first session.   I often describe the first meeting as a chance for me to get to know my clients and my clients to get to know me in order to make sure we are a good fit for working together.   Clients often get a sense quickly about whether or not they feel comfortable with a counselor.   The counselor will likely use the information provided in the first meeting to evaluate whether he/she the best therapist for a client based on the counselor’s level of expertise with the presenting concerns and the level of service that is needed.

Continue reading What should I expect during my first counseling session?

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Children & Stressors: The Anxious Child

Most often, in this blog series on Children & Stressors, I write about an identifiable situation or event that causes children some level of stress, but this post is a little different.   Today, I am writing about anxiety in general and more specifically children who tend to be anxious about a variety of stressors.   These children may become anxious on a more regular basis.

Parenting a child who experiences anxiety can feel overwhelming and challenging.   We want to be supportive and validating of a child’s experience without inadvertently perpetuating the anxiety.    We also want to help a child in learning how to cope with anxiety while also being careful not to be punitive.  And we are trying to figure out how to do all of this with an anxious child in front of us!  Hopefully this post will help you generate some new ideas about how to support your child and reduce any stress that his/her anxiety may be causing you. Continue reading Children & Stressors: The Anxious Child