Assessment and Evaluation for Your Child

By Eleanor Harrison, PhD What does it mean to have a psychological evaluation or an educational assessment done on your child? I often get calls about neuropsychological assessments or psychological assessments or just “what’s wrong with my child?” assessments. I hope to clarify the differences in this article so parents can make better decisions about how to get help for a child who is struggling. Maybe you’ve noticed your child is struggling in school. This can look a number of differe...
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Trauma Dynamics: Treatment for Complex PTSD

By Alexandria Hayes, MA, LPC, NCC Trauma Dynamics is a therapy method for treating complex post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD results from an unresolved experience that was or felt life threatening. Simple PTSD results from a single incident, such as a car accident, assault, fire, or natural disaster. Complex PTSD results from repeated or ongoing incidents, such as childhood abuse, multiple combat deployments, or captivity. The reason for the distinction is that the impact of traum...
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Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

By Lavinia Ball-Marian, MA, LPC In my work with children and their families, I notice that there are more and more grandparents raising their grandchildren. This has become a trend due to very unfortunate circumstances: parents in prison or with mental health problems that render them unable to care for a child, child abuse, substance abuse, financial difficulties, death. When you have to embark in this journey of raising grandchildren, many emotions and feelings come to the surface. Some em...
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The Middle Way – Finding the Balance for Couples

By Lesley S. Cunningham, MA, LPC After watching a TV show that extolled the idea of the Middle Way, as in Buddhism, it seemed like a very nice solution to life in general … and, for couples, marriages/partnerships, in particular. In this sutta, the Buddha describes the middle way as a path of moderation, between the extremes of sensual indulgence and self-mortification. This, according to him, was the path of wisdom. It is not called the middle way because it lies between too much and too litt...
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Depression Impacts Men, Too

By Jaime Davila, MA, LPC Do You Feel Like You are Losing Control or Focus? Do you feel an underlying dissatisfaction with your life that you’re unable to pinpoint? Do you feel disconnected from your loved ones or find yourself constantly at odds with them? Are you more irritable or impatient than you used to be? Are you considering changing jobs or careers but uncertain how to proceed? Do you worry that you haven’t been able to find a way to live that feels authentic? Are you struggling wi...
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Does My Child Need ADHD Testing?

By Eleanor Harrison, PhD I get many phone calls from parents who want ADHD testing for their child. Often, the child is doing poorly in school, displaying behavior problems, or is having difficulty with friendships. Sometimes, a teacher, friend, or relative has suggested the child may have ADHD. A sibling or parent might have recently been diagnosed with ADHD. So when is it a good idea to pursue an ADHD evaluation? ADHD was the diagnosis of the day not long ago. It seemed that many child...
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Mindfulness and Mental Health

By Peter Lear, MSW, LCSW, RYT If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, you are living in the future. If you are at peace, you are living in the present.                                                                ~Lao Tzu, 5th Century BCE Mindfulness is an ancient practice that seeks to deepen one’s awareness of the inner workings of the mind to create a healthy separation of the mind’s fluctuations from how we experience life. All of us are subject t...
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Besting the Holiday Blues

By Christian J. Billington, MA, NCC The holidays can be a busy time: a time for family, gift giving, reflection, well-established social expectations, and commitments. At the same time, the holidays can exaggerate stress, anxiety, loss, and loneliness. Sometimes the stressors can overwhelm the magic of the season. What follows are a few ideas to help you negotiate these difficulties. Instead of waiting for problems to erupt, consider strategies and skills ahead of time to help manage h...
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Setting Realistic Expectations for Your Child

By Lavinia Ball-Marian, MA, LPC In my work with children and their parents, I frequently learn that the parent’s expectations of their children are unrealistic. And not having their expectations met brings parents a lot of disappointment, which translates into consequences for children, turmoil, and breaks in the child/parent relationship. To help you navigate this tricky terrain, I would like to share some thoughts about how to set realistic expectations for your child. I grew up in Roma...
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Why Am I So Anxious?

By Alexandria Hayes, MA, LPC, NCC Are you often stressed out? Do you worry most of the time? When the problems you were worrying about are solved, do new problems pop up? Is it hard to remember the last time you felt at peace? If so, you are not alone. Many people find themselves in a near-constant state of anxiety, sometimes for as far back as they can remember. Why is this? Why are certain people anxiety-prone and others not? There isn’t a single answer, but recent research has shed li...
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