I am a happy wife, mother, and grammie of several adorable children. My life experience has given me an ability to see to the heart of many issues, to be compassionate, and understand that people generally do the best they can to live productive lives and help their friends and family do the same.
I have always enjoyed helping people. After my teaching career and raising my children, I decided to go back to school to pursue my counseling degree. Initially, I worked as a certified pastoral counselor. However, feeling there were a few "holes" in my education, I enrolled at California State University, Sacramento, and graduated with an MS. in counseling. I was licensed in 2010, and have been at Cornerstone Psychological Center since that time.
I enjoy seeing a variety of clients ranging from kids with anxiety, to couples, to families with mental illness in their midst. I also enjoy teaching, which lends itself well to my primary mode of counseling: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Although I am sensitive to the diverse needs of each client, I am fairly directive in my approach. My feeling is, if you could solve your problems alone, you wouldn't come to me. I love the collaborative relationship we have as clients set an agenda for themselves and we work toward specific goals.
MY IDEAL CLIENT:
Helping clients through a divorce, an infidelity, or a generally unhappy marriage is very rewarding. These issues are so multi-faceted, and can include anxiety, depression, and feelings of paralysis in the relationship. My challenge is to help my clients process their losses and move past them to a new and healthful future. Divorce Care and the Gottman educational classes/seminars are two of the important referrals I use.
My experience with mental illness in my own extended family has enabled me to help family members whose children, parents, or spouse have bipolar disorder. Processing a client's choice to use medication and the stigma that sometimes accompanies that, can be a daunting issue. Navigating the mental health systems in our area is also challenging. It is rewarding to individuals living with bipolar disorder and other mental health diagnoses learn to take charge of their lives and go on to function more productively as they become empowered to move forward.
Another segment of the population I see is children and teens. Kids benefit from learning new coping mechanisms for things like anxiety, bullying, stress from divorce, and learning to manage living in two homes. I like to use methods and techniques such as art therapy, sand tray, puppet play, and therapeutic games. I work to expand each child's "feelings vocabulary" and practice expressing their emotions.
Whatever your challenge, I believe that the counseling experience can be helpful to your growth. I would be happy to be part of your journey as you move toward realizing your goals and look forward to working with you.
Retha Millikan ReachesRoseville CA