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photoMy beliefs about therapy
guide me in my practice:

Interested in, and influenced by Michael White and David Epston, the founders of Narrative Therapy, I have come to recognize that my clients are indeed the experts of their own lives. I am committed to do all that I can to respect this as I work collaboratively, whatever the concern or problem. As a Narrative Therapist I work with my clients in the practice of developing richer and thicker narratives of the life story. In the process, Narrative Therapists ask questions to generate experientially vivid descriptions of life events that are not currently included in the plot of the problematic story. I owe much to my teachers and guides in the world of Narrative practices, especially Evanston’s Jill Freedman, and Gene Combs. These days, I find myself less focused on the therapy approaches built on Freud's original paradigm for therapy, an approach with a medical model focus on pathology. I am interested and curious however about the rich development of stories that can be made visible regarding who we have been in our lives... and who we'd like to be.

Since the 1990's, known as the Decade of the Brain, we have a much more scientifically verified knowledge of brain functions. These developments continue, and have been invaluable in helping us better understand the enormous impact of our brain, "our hardware," 0n how we think, feel, learn, and experience the world we live in. I admire the work of Daniel Segal, and others who have brought the ancient practice of mindfulness into the practice of psychotherapy in accessible and useful ways. This work bridges beautifully in helping people develop awareness and a balanced stance when struggling against anxiety or depression, or simply the stress of modern life.

In the mid-1990's I had the opportunity to expand my practice into working more with clients who learn and experience in unique ways, (often called "learning disabilities"). I now have decades of extensive clinical experience with these remarkable people, especially in the area known as "social learning disabilities." I have been guided on this journey by my mentor and colleague, the scholar, and Chicago area social worker, Joe Palombo. Also, Meryl Lipton, and the folks at Rush Neurobehavioral Center, have also provided a great source of enrichment and inspiration for my work.

When standing up to problems, I often find it useful to invite family members into the work. I discuss this as a possibility, with my clients. Additionally, I am a group therapist. I often have therapy groups up and running with young people, as well as adults. Here again I owe a large debt to a mentor, the seminal group therapist, and my former consultant on Dearborn Street in Chicago, Barach Levine.

I learn so much from my clients, colleagues, and teachers. Being a social worker and therapist, has offered the opportunity for me to grow and change over time in ways that few professions provide. I am deeply honored to do this meaningful work. Thank-you.