Ronald Barrick is a counselor and consultant. He believes that everyone deserves to feel respected, safe, and cared for. The path to this destination has been “a long and winding road” for him. While attending York College of PA, and for several years after graduating he worked with adults with developmental disabilities supporting them in living as independently as possible. This experience helped to form this belief.
A twist in the road took him into the world of business where he worked for eighteen years. While he experienced success and learned from failure in this field, he remained fascinated by the way that people interact, and drawn to the field of counseling.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in behavioral sciences from York College of PA, and a master’s degree in counselor education from McDaniel College. In 2003 Ron began providing addiction counseling services. He has conducted over 1,200 drug and alcohol evaluations and instructed the Pennsylvania Impaired Driver School, as well as facilitated counseling groups and provided communications training and consultations. He is a Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor by the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium, and is qualified as a Substance Abuse Professional under US Department of Transportation regulations.
He believes that addiction and trauma affect not only the person who experiences them, but also everyone in relationship with them. He finds working with the families of those who are affected by addiction, and the trauma that accompanies it, particularly stimulating. While completing post-masters coursework at Capital Seminary and Graduate School, he was introduced to the systems approach to therapy and developed a love for the benefits of this approach. Helping families to improve their communication skills allows them to grow in their relationships with each other and work as a team to resolve the issue, avoiding blaming and judgement and encouraging responsibility for self.
Throughout his lifetime, Ron has experienced the pain of divorce, the challenges of co-parenting, and the success of being in a loving marriage since 2006. He has found that the key to a successful relationship lies in learning the balance between those things best avoided, such as complaining, criticizing, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling, and those things best applied, such as assuming commitment, good intent and good will.
While Ron’s training as a professional counselor provides him with a wide variety of counseling skills and techniques, his Christian faith greatly impacts his approach to counseling. The counseling process is more like working with a trainer at the gym than going to the doctor. When you go to the doctor, you tell him your symptoms and expect him to give you a pill to cure you. When you work with a trainer, he may teach you new techniques, correct techniques that don’t produce the desired results, or encourage you to do the hard work required to grow and develop. Just as having a workout partner, or going to an exercise class can make working out more pleasant and increase your chances of using improved exercise form during a workout, even when you are not working with a trainer, the family system approach to counseling favored by Mr. Barrick can increase the duration of change after the counseling process ends.