In my Old Town Pickerington private practice as a Pastoral Counselor, I see adults, adolescents, children, and couples for counseling. While the difficulties people face vary a great deal, there are areas which I specialize in (have more experience in) and are listed on the page titled “Specialties.”
One exceptionally difficult area I have substantial experience in is the landslide of emotional, financial, familial and personal bewilderment and trauma associated with terminal mental health diseases or terminally disabled care. Alzheimers, dementia, Huntington’s Disease or ALS are some of the tragic areas included in this area. Learning how to cope with the changes taking place, identifying what is taking place, modifying social life, changes in career/income, and the communication challenges taking place are some of the hurdles faced by these families. Additionally, it’s common to be sympathetic to the victims of these diseases, but by and large, it’s the CAREGIVERS who are oftentimes the most critically impacted. As a result, its not uncommon for caregivers to die well before the one being cared for, due to the stress.
Knowing what to expect financially and where to turn for help is a critical area these families face and need to plan for WELL in advance to help minimize confusion, extreme loss, and unnecessary arguments. The caregivers of the patient is in vital need of a strong support group/family and a source of therapeutic help to help alleviate some of the tremendous strain placed on them. A healthy caregiver is vital to the transitioning stages a family experiences due to the mental decline of a loved one. Family members need to be keenly aware of the sacrifices and stresses of the caregiver and work together to reach out regularly.
I also offer premarital and marital counseling, in addition to helping those coping with the changes associated with divorce. Frequent couple issues include poor communication patterns, unresolved conflicts, financial strains, in-law interference, blended family challenges, sexual difficulties, relationship roles and disagreements over raising children. Couples who are contemplating divorce would benefit from couple and individual counseling PRIOR to considering such a drastic step. Please make sure you’ve exhausted as many resources as possible to work out your marriage. When it’s difficult to determine the root cause of marital problems, as a trained counselor and coach, I can help you to determine and clarify those areas. Sometimes, just being able to accurately name the problem can begin the journey towards healing. Poor communication and a lack of understanding some core issues are oftentimes at the heart of relational problems.
When I work with adolescents, I prefer (though I don’t insist) that the parent(s) come in with their child for the initial meeting. At that time, I’ll ask each person present to explain their concern and what they hope to achieve through counseling. Unless my client gives permission to share specific details with the parents, then any information shared with me will remain confidential (or if I the child or someone else’s life may be in danger.) I will, however, give the family some guidance which will be helpful in learning how to interact or understand the adolescent.
I may ask the parents to stay in touch with me regularly to increase my knowledge of what’s taking place at home or for any history which may be relevant to treatment. It’s all a puzzle which requires the help of others contributing information to form a more complete picture. As a generaly rule, it’s usually not just the child needing help, but the entire family which benefits from counseling. Our family dynamics get stuck in patterns which are sometimes “ruts” that keep us in non productive cycles. Life doesn’t unfold as we often hope, and it’s easy to blame others for that. Instead, accepting that life is unpredictable and the challenge of being able to adapt, learn, and change in a healthy manner is the essential for balance.
Personalities, mental disorders, trauma, tragedy, abuse, extended family problems, and the behaviors of other people all factor into how our lives play out. We don’t have control over everything, but we can do our best to not lose a sense of our own values, living them out and holding on to our own identity. We can learn to adjust and adapt to life by listening to The Lord and leaning on Him for direction, guidance and understanding. Our hardships draw us closer to Him and teach us to rely less on our own control so that we can live in greater peace.
Family’s willing to participate together in counseling deserve a great deal of credit. A healthy family learns to recognize and express their thoughts and feelings, establish healthy boundaries and encourage appreciation for the individuality within the family. Understanding our own emotions, our own thoughts and learning how to articulate them effectively is the greatest means of building better communication. It encourages acceptance, flexibility and understanding within the family structure.
I do not provide child custody evaluations.
I work with alcoholics and those desiring to be free from substance abuse. However, for the greatest positive results and being proactive in your recovery, I strongly urge participation in a 12 step program. Celebrate Recovery is an excellent program offered in many local churches. There’s no fee to join them nor any pre-registration. Just a desire to change your lifestyle is required.
FAITH is the thread which weaves hope, healing, and personal empowerment. If you do not have a desire to discuss faith during your sessions, I will respect that request. My mission is not to convert unbelievers, but to offer every person understanding, coping strategies and HOPE to live life more fully. I will be clear, however, that I believe God is the One Who does ALL the healing and I rely on Him wholly for giving direction, revelation and new hope. How one chooses to use the information or perceive any miraculous acts of God during the treatment period is entirely up to the individual. I respect each person’s right to choice.
My private practice is located at 167 E Columbus Street, Suite #2 , Pickerington, Ohio
Directions: From I-70 West/East take Pickerington, Rt 256 South Exit and go approximately 4 miles. Turn left on W Columbus Street for 0.5 miles. Just after the RR tracks, my office is the second building ( a tan house) on the right (just after Professional Center), 2nd floor, suite 2. There is ample parking in back.
Counseling by phone is also available for the same rate as in office sessions.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, please call 614-579-1708 and leave a message. You’re welcome to text me as well. Which ever is most comfortable for you, works for me. You can reach me via this website or email me at JC45679@aol.com. (Please put “new client” in subject box so you won’t be deleted in spam.)