Office Update

I’m continuing web conferencing rather than in-person meetings. I use VSee.com (free to clients, HIPAA-compliant). I also have a secure Zoom account.

Right now, I have a small waiting list of future clients. If you would like to be on the waiting list or inquire about estimated wait times, feel free to contact me.

2019 Summary

Thank you 2019! Here were the highlights!

  • attended a 40 hour EMDR training
  • hosted a panel presentation of conversion therapy survivors
  • studied the enneagram
  • obtained a Missouri counseling license (in addition to my Kansas one) & became a registered clinical supervisor
  • favorite clinical book I read this year: The Velvet Rage: Overcoming the Pain of Growing up Gay
  • studied men & depression and narcissism
  • facilitated a sex education program for adolescents
  • organized five continuing education events for therapists (Helping Transgender Clients in Transition; Becoming a Resilient Leader; Understanding LGBTQ+ in Islam and Middle East Culture; Sexual Identity, Behavior, and Fantasy with Sexual Trauma Survivors; Therapeutic Touch Practitioners–a Collaborative Resource; and Therapeutic Considerations with LBGTQ+ Active Military and Veterans)
  • joined a biweekly consultation group with 3 other professionals

Dare to Lead

I’ve been enjoying Brene Brown’s new book Dare to Lead. 2019 is my year of intentional leadership; I was attracted to the title. The resource is complete with an online workbook to self-assess my skills. Honestly, I have often resisted and dismissed the idea of being a leader because I have seen too many poor examples. I associated the concept of “leadership” with inept systems and/or bad faith actors. I previously held this worldview so close I failed to fully see and appreciate many positive examples of leadership in my life. To be clear, I still see leadership crises in SOME situations. But now, I’m willing to make leadership contributions and I’m more prepared with the tools in Dare to Lead.

Becoming a Supervisor

This Spring, I am supervising 4 graduate counseling students in their Practicum field experience. Basically, I’ll be helping new counselors evaluate their work and design treatment plans. To prepare, I am taking two courses:

  • “Clinical Supervision: Mastering the 4 Stages of Development” with Robert Taibbi, LCSW
  • “Using Deliberate Practice to Enhance Clinical Skill Development” with Tony Rousmaniere, PsyD

I’m looking forward to this collaboration with other clinicians. It’s always good to continuously re-evaluate my own skills and assumptions. I also decided that 2019 is my year of intentional leadership.

Factors in an Affair

A big thank you to Nicolle Zapien for pinpointing these 8 factors in infidelity. I find that they are very accurate.

  1. Dissatisfaction and hopelessness in the relationship.
  2. A value of novelty and passion in romantic/sexual relationships.
  3. A sense of deserving sexual satisfaction and intimate connections.
  4. The partner and self are viewed as fixed characters.
  5. Lack of curiosity for the partner as a subject.
  6. An experience of desire and passion overriding and overtaking one’s judgment.
  7. The affair is not recognized as an affair until after it begins.
  8. Divorce or opening up the relationship are not considered options for resolving the issues.

This Woman is on Fire

I’ve been reading Woman on Fire: 9 Elements to Wake up your Erotic Energy, Personal Power, and Sexual Intelligence. The 9 elements are: Voice, Release, Emotion, Body, Desire, Permission, Play, Home, and Fire. Amy Jo Goddard offers worksheets and exercises in each chapter to help individual women explore their sexual stories while identifying any stuck-ness, growth edges, preferred experiences, and experiments. I may refer to some of Goddard’s activities and resources as tools to bolster therapy.

Tantra Sexuality & Sacred Intimacy

I participated in a two-day couple’s workshop in Tantric Sexuality lead by Dr. Sally Valentine. Tantra is a special practice due to it’s concurrent engagement of the mind, body, emotions, and spirit.  Tantra emphasizes a person’s internal body consciousness and self-love as a foundation for connection with a loved one. This foundation & specific practices facilitate a neural synchronicity between lovers with heightened non-verbal communication. I learned at least 12 non-verbal practices and 6 verbal practices for increased relational intimacy. I’d be happy to share these techniques with you!

Decentering the Norm

I attended a 3-day workshop titled “Decentering the Norm: Social Justice Transformations in Sex Therapy, Counseling, and Sex Education.” Some highlights included:

  • sex tools that enhance or enable pleasure for people with disabilities
  • connecting pleasure with personal power and agency (rather than, for example workaholism)
  • a discussion of “sanism” and introduction to Mad Studies
  • how queer theory intersects and modifies attachment theory