Shanna Donhauser, MSW

Shanna Donhauser View Specialties

"Truly wonderful, the mind of a child is." - Yoda
In our fast-paced, competitive world, some times we forget to slow down and reflect on our lives. This is true for many adults, and especially true for new parents. There is so much stress in the early stages of family development, and yet it is such an important stage of life. Infancy and early childhood is a critical time in development, not only physical, cognitive, and social development, but also emotional development and the development of relationships through strong secure attachment. My goal is to help you and your family establish, maintain, and grow your relationships.
When people ask me about infant mental health, I tell them that infant mental health is just how well children develop social and emotional well-being from birth to six years old. This is primarily related to their primary relationships as well as the environment in which they are exposed during those critical years of overall development. My passion in early intervention is rooted in a deep intuition that early intervention really is preventative care. When I meet with parents and their small children, we're all working on the same goal: whatever small rupture is happening now can be contained, processed, and result instead in resilience and growth.
Most of the families I see walk in my door once something has already happened. The separation is final, a loved one has passed, signs of autism or developmental disorder detected, postpartum depression diagnosed, etc. This is important work, and although that little one may not have explicit memories of this time, they certainly will store implicit memories and quickly adapt to their changing environments. Reaching out for help is the first step in taking care of your family.
I also work with families that seek out help before something big changes in their family. Couples seeking support in their marriage, family planning, adoption, planning for a separation, or simply processing the "ghosts" that linger from our own families and histories to avoid passing on unwanted relationship dynamics. 
My practice is based in the clinical theories of attachment theory, psychodynamics, and somatic practices. I use reflection, observation, curiosity, and felt-sense to understand the subtle elements to whatever conflict or issue is important to you. And I can help you learn to develop and use these skills too.
My role is to support you and those important to you, in moving toward health and well-being. I love working with families because I truly believe in the power of relationships and in the strength that exists in families. Our relationships are complex things, ever-changing, difficult to grasp or intellectualize, but essential to human existence. And our relationships with our children matter. Let me help make your relationships stronger.
Educational Background:
New York University, Masters of Social Work
University of Washington, Certificate of Infant Mental Health
University of Washington, Bachelor of Arts

Shanna Donhauser Reaches

Seattle WA