Tag Archive for: counseling

Telling Your Children You’re Divorcing: 5 Things to Consider

When couples decide to end a relationship and it leads to the breakup of a family with children, the amount of information to process can be somewhat overwhelming. While the separation may be what’s best for everyone involved, how the information is shared with children will be a memory they hold forever.  How this family change is shared can impact the trajectory of the entire transition for each child. This process should be handled with tender care and with an emphasis on how you, the parents, will provide physical, mental, and emotional safety for each child.  Here’s a simple list to guide you through a very challenging decision making process which can help you share this news with your children in the most honest and gentle way possible. Learn More...

The Secret to Co-Parenting Success: Shifting from a Personal Relationship to a Parental Relationship

As a Therapist who has spent over a decade working with families and children, I’ve had the great privilege of sharing the various journeys of many, many clients. Some journeys (especially at the end of my work with clients) take a positive turn; I cherish the moments when I see clients thriving and no longer needing therapy for the time being.  Most people, however, begin their work with me at the start of a challenging journey, such as a journey of separation and divorce. Since I specialize in working with children, teens, and parents, the caregivers typically reach out to me after they’ve made decisions to end their relationship. They are oftentimes seeking out support for the purposes of best caring for their children through the transition. Sometimes they need support in developing c0-parenting skills, and sometimes they need support in how to tell their children about the divorce (and most times, both).  If you need help in planning how to tell your children you are separating, this article may be helpful, here. Learn More...

Coping with Grief During the Holidays

Grief is a complex mixture of emotions.  Grief can come from many types of losses or transitions including death of a loved one or pet, divorce, job loss, loss of a friendship, moving, etc.  Grief emotions are often cyclical in nature and are felt at various levels throughout the year depending on the intensity of emotional triggers.  Sometimes seasonal changes bring back memories of other emotional experiences at that same time of year. Learn More...

Teaching Our Child the Gift of Independent Play

My partner and I have two children, who are four years apart in age. As anxious and loving new parents, we participated in our oldest child’s play as much as we could, and as early as we could. From infancy, we joined our oldest on the floor to show interest in his world, communicate with him in the language he speaks (play), and demonstrate his importance and value to us.  As a Registered Play Therapist, I teach parents daily about the importance of child’s play and how children learn, problem solve, communicate, express, and work through their feelings, all through play. I also educate families about how much love and significance a child feels when parents join in the activities that bring joy to the child; it builds connection!  And as we know, when children are more connected, they are generally more cooperative. So much good comes from playing with your children! Learn More...

A Day in the Life of a Play Therapist: Attending a Play Therapy Conference

Have you ever wondered what a day at a play therapy conference might look like? I can assure you, it’s a lot of fun! I recently attended a fun Play Therapy Conference focused on Puppets in Play Therapy and Nature Play Therapy. Here are some highlights of the conference. After checking in I found my seat with some colleagues from Creative Family Counseling and some play therapists from Hazard, Ky. We chatted a bit and then our trainer, Jaime Lynn Langely, LCSW, RPT-S, started the class with a fun challenge. She had us list all the ways we might use a small brown paper bag in play therapy. I listed 11 which was the most of all the people in attendance. I won a prize for having the most responses! My clients will definitely use these prizes. This was a great way to start the conference! Learn More...

Lola the Therapy Dog

A Life of Service: Lola’s Retirement From Animal-Assisted Therapy

While in graduate school earning my degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, I spent a semester working as a student counseling intern at a psychiatric hospital.  Also at that hospital worked a Therapy Dog named Brinkley who offered a sweet and calming presence to the patients with whom he worked. Brinkley was the first Therapy Dog I’d met. While I had known of working Service Dogs, I had never met a Therapy Dog and was excited to learn about the difference between the two and something called Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT). Learn More...

“Hello…I’m looking for a Feelings Teacher for my children.”

A parent recently called and said she was looking for a “Feelings Teacher” for her two children.  I explained that this was not necessarily a title I’d been given before, but that perhaps I could help.  While discussing what exactly her goals would be for bringing her children in to see a “Feelings Teacher,” she identified what I would call typical treatment goals for counseling with children: Learn More...

Therapist offering counseling

A Space for Healing: The Perspective of a Play Therapist*

As a Marriage and Family Therapist Associate in practice at Creative Family Counseling in Louisville, KY, I work mostly with kids, teens and their families. The pandemic has changed many aspects of what therapy looks like; I practice via telehealth with many clients, conducting sessions with them via video conferencing. I also meet with younger clients (ages 4-12) in-person at the office while we are masked because meeting via telehealth with that age group is, typically, too challenging for them to engage in in a meaningful way longterm.  Learn More...

Nugget, therapy dog at Creative Family Counseling in Louisville, KY

Nugget’s Knowledge: A Check In with Nugget the Therapy-Dog-in-Training

Creative Family Counseling is a group practice in Louisville, Kentucky that specializes in working with families that include young children and teens.  The practice offers many types of experiential and creative interventions to help young clients engage and participate in therapy in developmentally appropriate ways.  Known in town as the “practice with the dogs,” Creative Family Counseling has become somewhat known for offering Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT) with Certified Therapy Dogs as one of the creative ways to engage family members of all ages.  While AAT has been limited in the last few months due to the Pandemic, the practice’s two Therapy Dogs – Lola and Archer – and one Therapy Pup in training – Nugget – continue to be a source of joy for clients, even if from a distance.  Marriage and Family Therapist Associate Leslie Cashion and her Therapy Partner, Nugget sat down for a little checkin to give us an update on Nugget’s certification training as a Therapy Dog as well as some other topics such as working from home.

Leslie: (calling from her office chair) Nugget, c’mere buddy! I know you really want to finish tearing up that new dog stuffy to spread fluff all over the office, but Lacey wants to hear about how life is going as a 1+ yr old Golden Retriever therapy dog in training.

Nugget: (bounding in from the other room, enthusiastically leaping on Leslie’s lap) LACEY! I love Lacey, she’s Lola’s mom and is always ready to pet my soft head or give me amazing treats! Learn More...

Therapist offering counseling at Creative Family Counseling located in Louisville, KY

The Therapeutic Specialty of EMDR: What is it and how is it used?

While Creative Family Counseling offers many different Specialties for clients, depending on their interests and therapeutic needs, EMDR Therapy is a specialty that many people have questions about when first introduced to it.  For this reason, I sat down with my colleague, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Dawn Pendleton, who is Certified in EMDR. As a seasoned clinician with over 20 years in the field, Dawn has used numerous types of approaches to therapy, including EMDR.   She states that her goal is to facilitate healing for her clients in as short an amount of time as possible, which is why she’s so passionate about her use of EMDR.  In this interview, Dawn gave some background on this therapeutic tool, discussed how and why it is used, and suggested who might benefit from EMDR Therapy. Learn More...