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The term Adult Child is not about our own adult children, but about our own way of approaching life. When we have learned certain coping skills as children in difficult situations, then we are likely to bring those habits into our adult life – where they do not work! So although your troubled child can be helped, just as you can be helped, this is not the focus of ACA. In ACA we learn to focus on improving our own coping skills and re-framing our outlook – by doing that ourselves and everyone in our circle can get better.
When you come for help for your troubled child, your child is assessed just like any other client, and the modality most suited to your child’s problem will be applied.
It is recommended that parents of troubled children also undergo counselling and/or find a support group. It is unethical for me to see both you and your child unless you come for family counselling.
Certainly! Not only do I understand addiction inside and out, but research shows that alcoholics have a 70% higher chance of successful recovery when they have done the ACA program! I also have experience with other addiction, including sex addiction, but I do think that an integrative approach is best: Support groups, meetings, sponsors and partners/parents attending meetings or getting their own counselling are as important as the individual finding one on one effective counselling.
And whether the person struggling with addiction gets help or not, it is highly recommended that partners and family members get their own help. When you change, the people around you start changing. Even when you cannot influence someone else into recovery, you can learn more empowering behaviors and coping skills. I had to walk this road myself, and look forward to helping you change your life.
Adult Children are usually reluctant to attend group meeting. We just don’t do groups! But the group is the ideal safe, confidential and non-judgmental place in which to learn new healthy dynamics of interaction. We learn that we can be supported and validated. We take baby steps in vulnerability. we learn to ask for help and accept it. It is a safe place to practice boundaries. We learn about unconditional love. The group becomes the family we always wished we had.
Many of my programs have a group component as it is such an effective transformational tool. So approach it with an open mind and you will be amazed at the positive effects in your life.
It is recommended that you have a one on one session before attending a group. Although a skilled facilitator will be able to help you if you actively participate in group, having background information will facilitate more specific homework and questions geared at more effective transformational sessions for you.
Most definitely yes! Even though we recommend that two people work together on a relationship, often just one partner getting better improves the relationship and can even inspire the other partner to be part of the counselling process.
The counselling process is completely confidential. I handle all my bookings personally and take care not to let clients meet each other at my door. It is completely up to you to tell people that you are having counselling or not. The notes that I take are in shorthand and purely to jog my memory during our session. They are safely locked away and most probably completely incomprehensible to others!
I explain how I work and you tell me what your problems are and what you would like to achieve during our sessions. I will ask you questions in order to get a better idea of who you are, your history and your circumstances. You can at any time choose not to answer a question, but as it is assumed that you are choosing to attend counselling by free choice it is advisable that you make every effort to be as open and transparent as you can be. You are very welcome to make notes before you come if that will help you structure your thoughts.
Most clients come for anything between 3 months and a year. In cases where there was severe trauma – during childhood or later – we take a gentle and slow approach.
How long you come completely depends on you. Some clients also decide to take a break when they have achieved significant growth and resolution, and then choose to only come back during challenging times for a little top-up.
Some of our growth we can only complete in a loving relationship, as that is where our fear and abandonment issues play out, so often when your circumstances change you will go into a new growth spurt and will need additional support during that phase.
That happens. We cannot expect to have rapport with everyone we meet. In order to have a successful counselling relationship you must be able to trust me. It is wise to keep in mind a natural reluctance to bare our souls to complete strangers, so it is by no means an easy exercise. But it is worth persevering and giving it a good try.
In my experience (and I had seen 6 psychologists before I found ACA), you will be able to have a working relationship with nearly every professionally trained counsellor, as empathy and listening skills are as important as a thorough knowledge of counselling modalities. But it is important to be able to say that it is not working for you if you know that you have given it a fair chance and have been open and transparent.
Life happens to all of us, and all I ask is that you give me 48 hours warning so that I can notify someone else who may be waiting to get an appointment.
If you do not cancel, I will send you an invoice!
We all own our part of our story. Counselling is not about assigning blame or about making one party guilty. It is about understanding and doing better. Maya Angelou says “we do better when we know better”.
So it is not about gossiping about others, it is about getting an insight into our own contribution, as the only person I can change is myself!
The “He said, she said” story is a powerful way to gain insight and change the “I said” to more effective communication and relationship building.