"Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding."
Kahlil Gibran

Individual Therapy

We are all seeking wholeness. Internal conflicts can arise which cause crisis, sometimes immobilizing us in confusion, fear, anxiety or depression, and impairing our ability to form and maintain healthy interpersonal relationships. Viewed another way, these conflicts are our teachers. Drawing on my training and experience in a variety of modalities including psychodynamic psychotherapy, cognitive-behavioral interventions, family systems theory, interpersonal neurobiology, sensorimotor/somatic therapies, and mindfulness interventions, I use a strengths-based approach, with a direct and nurturing style, to address each client's needs.

 

I offer individual therapy with a particular focus on interpersonal relationship issues. With expertise in the resolution of childhood physical, sexual and emotional abuse, childhood and family trauma, grief and loss, identity development (in particular, adolescent identity development, gender identity development, cultural identity development, and sexual orientation identity development), mood disorders including depression and anxiety, parent and adolescent struggles, and living with a mentally ill family member, I can help individuals develop awareness of their patterns of behavior and thought and how these may be impeding their growth and personal development. Together with you, I can help set goals and design a plan of action for the resolution of internal conflicts which will aid in the development of healthy relationships - with others as well as with yourself.

Couple's Therapy

We are hurt in relationship, and we can be healed in relationship. Whether you are seeking to improve your understanding of what is happening in your relationship, build communication and empathy skills, or have descended into a downward spiral of fighting or conflict avoidance and believe that there is little hope for the relationship to be saved, couple's therapy can help.

 

As a Certified Imago Therapist, and drawing on training and study in a variety of different techniques and schools of thought including family systems theory, The Gottman Institute 's research on marriage, Non-Violent Communication , clinical hypnosis/hypnotherapy and current thinking in neurobiology and human relationships, I will assist couples in solving the mysteries of their difficulties. I can help partners discover their individual areas of growth and tasks to complete, stop hurting each other and learn how to get their mutual needs met. In so doing, partners in a couple learn to see themselves and their relationship clearly, with greater compassion for their partner and for themselves, and can journey forward toward authentic connection and wholeness.

 

When we meet and partner with another person, we are often deeply in love and swept up in the early, romantic phase of relationship. Eventually, however, most relationships reach the stage of power struggle, in which we see the other person as hurting us in ways we have previously been hurt, or frustrating us in our desire to have our needs met. Some partners are able to pass through the power struggle stage and learn skills to help them resolve future conflicts. Many others, however, can benefit from the caring, sensitive assistance of a knowledgeable and experienced therapist.

 

Couples' therapy is not individual therapy with two people; it is a process in which the individual histories, motivations, wounds and strengths of each person are considered, with a focus on how those factors are playing out in the dynamic relationship of the partners, and interventions are suggested at the level of the relationship.

 

I provide respectful, accepting, and non-judgmental therapy to adult partners in intimate relationships, in whatever ways loving partners choose to form and define those relationships.  

Family Therapy

Family Systems Therapy:  Many times one member of a family engages in behaviors that are overtly disruptive, which causes the family to seek treatment for individual member; however, often that behavior can be best addressed when considering how each family member is functioning and how their respective roles and behaviors interrelate. Using a family systems approach, with the full participation of all involved family members, therapy can shed light on the current difficulties and help transform family functioning. 

 

Family Reunification Therapy: if you have been estranged from one or more of your family members for some time, and wish to explore reconnecting, family therapy can help. Often this form of therapy involves meeting with the individual family members one or more times in preparation for joint meetings.  Sessions with two or more family members present will work toward establishing common agreements for interactions going forward, as well as exploring the causes of the rupture, offering an opportunity for healing, accounting, understanding, and re-established connection.



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Lauren M. Mac Neill
JD, LCSW

3310 SE Division

Portland OR

97202

 

503-380-8528