I’m here with my friend Dr. Cassidy Freitas, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist practicing in San Diego, talking about Therapy and how to make it work for us as families outside the mainstream. Cassidy shares that when a helping professional asked them, “How do you describe the problem?,” regarding their daughter, her husband responded, “Why are we calling it a problem?” Exactly. You can find more about her work and approach to supporting families at www.drcassidymft.com
Adventure of the Week
This week I talk about our adventure at the Burke natural history museum on the University of Washington campus.
Story: Even in sharing just her story, we touch on the transition into motherhood, unpacking your parenting baggage, pregnancy loss, couples therapy, integration, and creative work.
History: Sometimes in order to move forward, we have to look back. To provide context for some of the challenges we have with therapy, Cassidy walks us through some therapy evolution.
Goodness of Fit: We discuss how to be discerning in finding a good fit in a therapist, including getting recommendations from trusted friends and interviewing potential therapists over the phone with tough questions. A collaborative post-modern therapeutic approach is what best aligns with the gentle parenting/natural learning parenting approach.
Gatekeeping: We cover how to invite helpers into collaboration with your family on your terms. Cassidy shares her experience navigating this process for her daughter and we touch on a strength-based neurodiversity approach.
Coaching – Therapy: We wrestle with the value of each and how they fit together.
I posted in my Sage Parenting Tribe on Facebook that we were going to chat about therapy today and asked, “If you could speak to the therapy powers-that-be, what would you want them to know about supporting you?” and I had a brilliant avalanche of comments that I compiled into one message that I wanted to share with you.
We respond to, “We question everything and follow our natural instincts. Know that our parenting approach is not pathological – it’s not the source of our struggles – and does not need to be fixed. If we have to hold a posture of defending and educating, then we can’t strip down and be vulnerable. We need you to trust us and hold quiet, supportive space. If or when you lean in to offer gentle guidance that is aligned with our expressed values and needs, be ready with the “why.” Don’t try to change us into your personal ideal version of “mother” – our compasses are already clearly and confidently set. This is not our greatest weakness; this is our greatest strength. Instead, empathetically connect with us and be a safe harbor for us to rest our bright sails – to be messy and imperfect and dizzy. We are bold and radical and will dive into this collaborative work. If you wish to help us, this is where we meet.”
Braving the Wilderness: Cassidy recommends reading Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown, which I just finished reading and also recommend.
On Being Podcast with Brené Brown
Marie Forleo with Brené Brown
Pregnancy Loss: Click here to read my post chronically my journey of healing through pregnancy loss.