LightHouse Counseling Services

...focusing on the special needs of adoptive families

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Philosophy and Treatment
As human beings we were created with a need for relationship.  The first and most natural relationship that develops is between mother and child.  It is on this foundation that all other connections are built, first with family members, then extended family, friends, and peers. Families come together as a system and not individuals in isolation.  What happens to one member of the family causes change and adjustment in the other members in order to keep the balance.  Therefore, we feel it is important not only to work with the adopted child or children, but to help all family members cope with the secondary trauma and unresolved issues which invariably surface as a result.

In the area of attachment and trauma, we believe that recovery cannot take place in isolation, but only within the context of relationship.  For children, the most powerful tool for healing is within the parent-child connection, and as counselors it is our job to facilitate the development of a healthy attachment.  We work to both teach and support parents in methods and strategies that they can use at home to facilitate attachment as well as working with parent and child together in counseling. We never counsel the child without the parent(s) present.

It is essential to begin by addressing the attachment issues.  However, we cannot stop once attachment is progressing.  The next step is to help the child work through the trauma which caused the attachment disruption starting with the loss of the birth mother and working through any subsequent traumatic experiences.  The final step is being able to fully grieve the loss, and come to a resolution and forgiveness.   As a child progresses through developmental stages or hits significant milestones such as birthdays or other life events, the feelings of loss are often triggered.  A child may regress or exhibit behavioral signs that the trauma needs to be addressed again at a new level.

As we work with our clients, we develop plans to meet each family’s individual needs. We often implement techniques such as Narrative Therapy, Directed Play with Object Lessons, as well as Parental Holding in a safe and controlled manner. We also believe that God is the ultimate healer and counselor, and will pray with and for our clients if they choose. Additionally, we are blessed with an intercessory team that prays for our practice in general terms.

Photo by: endbradley