Doug Nelson received his Master’s Degree in Alcohol and Drug Rehabilitation Counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1988. I remain a “go to” therapist for three strongly established substance abuse rehab programs in South Florida. These facilities send their clients who have completed residential or partial hospitalization and need an outpatient therapist to enhance comprehensive life skills and effective communication strategies to build long-term recovery.
There are many active parties in family therapy: each of the family members and the therapist. While each family member is considered a client by the therapist, the true client is “the family.” The therapist focuses on improving the family dynamics that led to the family to seek professional therapy. Family consultations, conducted every six sessions, are a different modality because the adolescent is identified as the primary client working with the therapist on a regular basis.
During the mid 1990's, I worked for a cognitive based partial hospitalization program in Atlanta under the supervision of a clinical psychologist who graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, the birthplace of cognitive therapy. Utilizing David Burns' book Feeling Good as well as other exercises such as cognitive distortion quizzes and thought records, these skills have been transitioned to my outpatient practice as applicable for specific clients.
Couples therapy involves goal setting so that each member of the couple builds their communication skills with each other while addressing the primary goals and concerns that led to seeking professional assistance. Sessions are typically conducted with both parties present. Couples present with a wide spectrum of topics that can be addressed including: intimacy parenting family of origin bereavement fidelity anger management retirement substance abuse joint decision making
When confronting grief, the groundbreaking book On Death and Dying, by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross noted three key stages (anger, bargaining, and depression) to work through in order to find solitude and acceptance following the loss of a loved one. Many clinicians believe that hope and JOY are crucial to experience simultaneously during the grieving process and I ensure clients do experience hope and JOY while working through a loss or transition.
As an out gay man since age twenty-three, I enjoy specializing as a provider to members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. As an LGBT Plus specialist, some of the matters addressed in sessions include, but are not limited to: Strife between partners Degrees of being out Coping with HIV+ diagnosis Creating support system of friends within LGBT community Transitioning associated with gender identity Assisting parents whose children have come out Being single