Sacramento Valley CAMFT

 Support for Your Professional Growth



March 2018
 Newsletter Editor:  Heather Blessing, MA, LMFT
info@svccamft.org 
 
 
Having Problems Reading this E-Mail? 
Click Here to read it on our website.

 

 Newsletter Highlights & Important Information

   Don't forget to check out - Listings of paid internships in the Sacramento Area

All of our workshops are at Rancho Cordova City Hall - Click Here for Directions   
 
Special Feature - Parent Blaming - School Shootings


We want to thank our amazing volunteer for the month of February: 
Jason Cantrill

We would like to thank our Gold Level Sponsor:




Letter from the Board

March 1, 2018

Hello Member,  

I am pleased to report that our first quarter has been a very busy and productive time for our board.  We recently attended the CAMFT Annual Leadership Conference where our board members had the opportunity to exchange ideas with other leaders form different chapters in California.  I was very proud to be one of the representatives of the Sacramento Valley chapter who was recognized by other chapters for its innovation and outstanding outreach initiatives.

We learned a lot of new information from other chapters and CAMFT representatives that we plan to implement in our own community. The board will be discussing some of these new ideas in April during the board retreat as part of the planning process for the strategic plan for next year.

The month of March s going to be one of our busiest months yet. On March 2nd, we have the honor of hosting the  “Anxiety Disorders/Hoarding” workshop, which will be presented by Dr. Robin Zasio, who is known for her clinical expertise in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.  We also have the 3000 Club presenting a Free one hour workshop on  Recovery and Attachment presented by Amy Rose with Recovery Happens.

On March 23rd, we will be hosting our First Annual Mental Health Professional Job Fair. Please register to stay updated and share the news with friends and colleagues to help us make this a successful event. Admission to the event will be free and there will be many great prizes which include Free Law and Ethics workshop registration, free year of SVC-CAMFT membership, $100 Gift Card, and free workshop registrations.

Lastly, don’t for get to register for the April 6th workshop, “Traumatic Brain Injury: Mental Health Considerations”. In this workshop, you will learn about the symptoms of TBI across the severity spectrum, as well as evidence-based treatment modalities. The workshop will be presented by Dr. Joel Solomon, a licensed clinical neuropsychologist who works primarily with TBI survivors through Mercy General Hospital and its grand-funded Home and Community Reintegration Program for TBI Survivors.  The 3000 Club welcomes back the BBS to answer any of your questions at their Free 1 hour workshop.

Best Regards, 

Talal


  This issue:
· Ethics Corner
· Job Fair Flyer
· Upcoming Event
Information
· Upcoming Board Meetings

· Special Feature
· Letters to the Editor

· Psyched about Books and Movies

· Paid MFT Internships
· Advertising and Announcements

· Advertising Policy for the Newsletter

BOARD OF DIRECTORS
President:

Talal Alsaleem, LMFT

President-Elect:
VACANT

Past President:
Patricia Saint James, LMFT

Secretary:
Adriana Joyner, LMFT

Treasurer:
Pate DuBois, AMFT

Program Co-Chairs:

VACANT 
VACANT

3000 Club Chair:
Suzy Lee, LMFT

Volunteer Chair:
VACANT

Membership Chair:

Jessica Wolff, LMFT

Sponsorship Chair:
Marti McClellan-Morehouse, LMFT




 


2018 Board Election

2018 Election is complete

We are still looking for a President Elect if you are interested please email info@svccamft.org 

We still are looking for a President-Elect, Volunteer Chair and Program Co-Chair and also committee members for several committees including the Sponsorship Committee, Programs Committee, Bylaws Committee, Membership Committee, Nomination Committee, Finance Committee, and Ethics Committee.  We also need volunteers for short term projects or workshops

To Volunteer, click here.

We are now have many ways to show our volunteers appreciation for their time - click here for more information.



News from the BBS

LCSW, LMFT, LPCC: Upcoming License Renewal Fee Increase (SB 1188):

All licensees with an expiration date on or after July 1, 2018 will experience a fee increase upon renewal.  This is a result of the passage of SB 1188 (Chapter 557, Statutes of 2017), and the increased revenue will provide additional funds to the Mental Health Practitioner Education Fund (more info):

  • LMFTs: Biennial renewal fee will increase from $140 to $150
  • LCSWs: Biennial renewal fee will increase from $110 to $120
  • LPCCs: Biennial renewal fee will increase from $175 to $195

TEN TIPS FOR A SMOOTHER LICENSING PROCESS FROM THE BBS

1. SUBMIT a complete application packet.

Whether you are submitting a Registration Application or an Application for Licensure and Examination, make sure that you include all the required paperwork. Each application has instructions that identify what items are necessary. Whenever sending important documents to BBS, remember to maintain a copy for your records. Also, you may consider using a “priority mailing service” with delivery confirmation and a tracking feature.

2. CREATE a BreEZe account.

BreEZe is DCA’s online service portal that allows you to verify a license or registration, renew your license or registration, submit a change of address, or request a duplicate certificate. It is the fastest and easiest way to complete the renewal process. You can sign up for a BreEZe account by going to www.breeze.ca.gov.

3. APPLY for your Law & Ethics Exam as soon as possible.

As a registrant, you are required to take the Law & Ethics examination a minimum of one time per renewal cycle until you pass. If you have passed the Law & Ethics Exam, you are no longer required to take the exam to renew. During your first renewal period, you may take the Law & Ethics exam every 90 days. During your second renewal period, you will have to provide proof of completion of a 12-hour Law & Ethics course when submitting a retake application.

4. UNDERSTAND your testing responsibilities.

Take time to read your candidate handbook and ensure you understand the rules of the exam so that you are prepared for your test day. Also, be aware of the requirements for cancelling or rescheduling an exam appointment. The candidate handbook contains information that will assist you in understanding the exam. Candidate handbooks and exam information can be found on the Exam page of the BBS website.

5. RENEW your registration in a timely manner.

Once you are registered with BBS, you must renew your registration every year to count supervised hours and weeks of supervision towards the examination eligibility requirements. If your registration expires or lapses, you will not be able to count supervised experience or weeks of supervision gained for the period in which the registration was delinquent. Remember that your registration is valid for six years and that you must apply for a subsequent registration number if you need to maintain a registration after six years.

6. MAINTAIN your exam eligibility.

Once you have been approved for a Clinical exam, you must take a Clinical exam at least once per year to maintain your eligibility. If you fail to take a Clinical exam within a year, you will have to reapply for examination and licensure.

7. APPLY for your initial license.

Once you have completed all requirements for licensure, the last and final step is to submit an initial license application. Once that is processed, you will receive your license and certificate in the mail. You will also be able to check the status of your new license at www.breeze.ca.gov.

8. EMAIL questions.

Emailing is the fastest and most efficient method to communicate with the Board. By emailing your question, Board staff can research and respond to your questions more thoroughly. This will also give you the advantage of being able to retain the response in writing.

9. DISCLOSE convictions and prior disciplinary actions on your application.

Provide a complete and detailed, signed and dated background statement form. Provide a certified copy of the court document and arrest report for each conviction. Provide evidence of rehabilitation and recommendation letters. Submitting this information will assist in processing your application.

10. KEEP informed on what is happening at BBS.

It is important you keep informed of possible upcoming changes to laws and regulations that may affect your license or your pathway to licensure. Changes are posted to the Board’s website at www.bbs.ca.gov. You may sign up for our subscriber list to receive notice of major updates or you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


 

Ethics Corner

For 2018, in each newsletter we will be featuring different CAMFT ethics codes and looking deeper at how to implement them into your clinical practice.

This month we are looking at ways that we, as therapists, can show our commitment to and give back to our community:

“7.5 PRO BONO SERVICES: Marriage and family therapists are encouraged to participate in activities that contribute to a better community and society, including devoting a portion of their professional activity to services for which there is little or no financial return.”

On February 16 and 17, 2018, several of the Sacramento Valley Chapter board members attended the annual CAMFT Leadership Conference in San Francisco. We met with CAMFT members from across the state and collaborated around ways to meet the needs of therapists and the community throughout California. Seeing the amazing work that is done and the multiple ways that CAMFT members are giving back is humbling.  

Some of the highlights were learning about the Redwood Empire Chapter’s support for their therapists and the community after the recent fires that devastated the Napa area, and learning about CAMFT’s Crisis Response Education and Resources program. 

Giving your time to professional organizations such as CAMFT (either at the state level or your local chapter) is one way.  Sacramento Valley Chapter has current openings on our board and always welcomes volunteers for events and on committees. Also, check out CAMFT’s list of opportunities for volunteering at the state level.

In your clinical practice, there are many ways you can give back and dedicate portions of your professional time to pro bono work.  For some, this is done through reduced fee/no fee client spots each week or programs like Give an Hour which connects individuals with a licensed therapist for free therapy services.

Finding where your passion lies and seeking out ways to contribute and volunteer in those areas is a great way to get connected. This year, my clinical practice is focused on bringing awareness to suicide and working to decrease the stigma and deaths related to suicide. On Valentine’s Day, I spent the day with Bridgewatch Angels who are dedicated to decreasing suicide deaths on the Golden Gate Bridge. It was an empowering and meaningful way to spend the day. Or if you’re licensed, an option would be to volunteer as a clinical supervisor for a local non-profit agency that aligns with an area you strongly believe in.

What is your area of passion? What is one (or more) ways to give back in your clinical work for 2018?


Adriana Joyner, Secretary & Ethics Committee Chair, Sacramento Valley Chapter, CAMFT



  First Annual Mental Health Professionals Job Fair

Win a Raffle Prize
(you need not be present to win - just fill out a raffle ticket when you attend our Job Fair)

Prizes include:  Free Law and Ethics Workshop Registration, Free year of SVC-CAMFT membership, 
$100 Gift Card, and free workshop registrations.

Sponsoring Participants:
       


Participants: 
Auburn Davis Center for DBT * CAMFT * Hope Counseling Center * Hope for Healthy Families * Lighthouse Counseling & FRC * Telecare Corporation * The Soldier's Project



*** Due to Popular Demand we have extended the deadline for reserving a booth at the job fair to Friday, March 16, 2018 ***


 


March & April Events

MARCH FREE 3000 CLUB WORKSHOP

Topic: Recovery and Attachment
Presenter: Amy Rose with Recovery Happens
Date: Friday, March 2. 2018
Time:
 8:30am to 9:30am 

Location:  Rancho Cordova City Hall, 
                    2729 Prospect Park Drive, 
                    Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 (map)
Free Coffee and Donuts 
Space is limited so please register here

Workshop Information:  

Come join us for free coffee and doughnuts while Amy Rose discusses how early attachment directly affects addiction and how to recover from addiction by learning “earned secure attachment” in relationships. 

Presenter Bio: 

Amy Rose has been in the field of chemical dependency for the past 13 years.  She graduated from American River College with a CADC II certification, the highest standard in the field of addiction. She is currently attending Sacramento State to obtain her MFT license.
Amy is passionate about helping individuals remove shame, learn to live in authenticity and vulnerability, and aiding entire family systems into health and wholeness.  She considers it a privilege to walk others through their struggles with chemical dependency.

Amy has experience both in outpatient and intensive outpatient levels of care.  She is active in the 12- step community and has been sober since 2002.  Amy specializes in individual counseling, family counseling, facilitating parent support groups, and gender specific recovery groups revolving around wellness from chemical dependency and co-dependency. She also focuses on educating individuals and families on self-care tools, healthy boundaries, building self-esteem, and obtaining long-term healing.


** Please be courteous and send us an email at info@svccamft.org if you are unable to attend after you have registered. **

MARCH WORKSHOP

Topic:  Hoarding Disorder: Dispelling the Myths and Increasing Awareness of Treatment Strategies
Presenter:  Dr. Robin Zasio, Psy.D., LCSW

Sponsored by: 
Date:  Friday, March 2, 2018
Time: 10:00 AM to 12:00PM
Location: Rancho Cordova City Hall, 
                 2729 Prospect Park Drive, 
                 Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 (map)

Doors Open at 9:00AM
Networking starts at 9:00 AM

This program will benefit LMFT, LPCC, LEP and LCSW licensees and pre licensees by giving information on evidence-based treatment modalities; including CBT and ERP presented by an expert in the treatment of Hoarding Disorder and Owner and Director of The Anxiety Treatment Center of Sacramento, Roseville, and El Dorado Hills.

Includes: Breakfast and meets the qualifications for 2 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.  Sacramento Valley Chapter of California Marriage and Family Therapist CAMFT CEPA CE Provider #62279 CE Credit will be awarded after the completion of the course via email. 

No CEs will be awarded to persons arriving late or leaving early. Partial CE credit will not be awarded.


Workshop Information:

Hoarding Disorder affects over 4 million US Americans and has a devastating impact on not only the person suffering from this condition, but also family, friends, and the community at large. A disorder that often times remains untreated due to a persons shame and fear, individuals struggling will experience devastating consequences as their personal lives and home environment are destroyed. This presentation will discuss the criteria, treatment, and stages of assessment in Hoarding Disorder. How to help family members and where to access resources will also be discussed, in addition to Q&A.

Schedule:
9:00 am Registration Starts
9:00am - 9:45am - Networking 
9:45am - 10:00am - Announcements
10:00am - 11:00am 
- Workshop
11:00am - 11:10am - Break
11:10am - noon - 
workshop
noon - Workshop Ends

Learning Objectives:
Participants will be able to identify how CBT is used in the treatment of Hoarding Disorder
Participants will be able to identify how ERP is used in the treatment of Hoarding Disorder.
Participants will be able to identify the 5 Assessment strategies of Hoarding Disorder.


Presenter Bio:
Dr. Robin Zasio, Psy. D., LCSW is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She has been specializing in treating anxiety and related disorders for the past 18 years utilizing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention techniques. After developing a thriving private practice, she developed The Anxiety Treatment Center of Sacramento in 2005, and more recently, The Anxiety Treatment Center of Roseville, and The Anxiety Treatment Center of El Dorado Hills. These programs offer Partial Hospitalization, Intensive Outpatient Treatment, Equine Therapy, Hoarding Disorder Track, Perfectionism Track, and Child and Adult Track. Dr. Zasio also serves on the Scientific Advisory Board, Clinical Advisory Board, and the Speakers Bureau for the International OCD Foundation, and travels the Country teaching providers about proper treatment for anxiety disorders and works to reduce stigma.. She is a member of the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Foundation, American Psychological Association, Trichotillomania Learning Center, and Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies. Dr. Zasio is also a featured doctor on the Emmy Nominated hit series Hoarders and Host of My Extreme Animal Phobia.


Register and pay online

Early registration ends Thursday, February 22, 2018 Early registration rates:

2018 Licensed, Associate or Affiliate Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $20

2018 Pre-Licensed Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $15

Non-Member: $30

Starting Friday, February 23, 2018 rates:

2018 Licensed, Associate or Affiliate Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $25

2018 Pre-Licensed Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $20

Non-Member: $35

Registration Ends Thursday, March 1, 2018
Walk-in Registration on the day of the event is an additional $5 and is not guaranteed and is based upon availability. 

Registration Policy 
Effective January 1, 2018 SVC-CAMFT event registration must be paid online except with prior approval.  Registration dates and fees may vary and are subject to change without notice.  Event discounts prices and discount periods may or may not be offered.  Event registration is deemed complete during the registration period in which registration payment is received.  Incomplete or unpaid registration will be cancelled and removed at the end of each registration period.  

Refund Policy 
Cancellations received more than 7 days prior to an event may be subject to an administrative fee to cover costs of the initial transaction.  No shows, failure to attend, and cancellations 7 or fewer days prior to an event for any reason are non-refundable, including registrations received fewer than 7 days prior to an event. No credit, refunds, or price adjustments will be given for typographical advertisement errors. A $25 fee in addition to the registration fee will be charged for insufficient funds, denied credit cards, or charge-backs. By registering for the event you agree to the terms of the Refund Policy.

Grievance Policy 
is located here.

To request accommodations for a disability for any of our events contact our Administrative Assistant at info@svccamft.org


APRIL FREE 3000 CLUB WORKSHOP

Topic: BBS Answers your questions
Presenter: BBS Representatives
Date: Friday, April 6. 2018
Time: 8:30am to 9:30am 
Location:  Rancho Cordova City Hall, 

                2729 Prospect Park Drive, 
                Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 (map)

Free Coffee and Donuts 
Space is limited so please register here

Workshop Information:  
Bring your questions for the BBS and get them answered.  We will have a couple of BBS Representatives there to answer your questions and assist you with any BBS and Licensure issues you may have.  

Presenter Bio: 

A couple of BBS Representatives will be here to answer you questions on the LMFT licensing path and update you on any changes.

** Please be courteous and send us an email at info@svccamft.org if you are unable to attend after you have registered. **

APRIL WORKSHOP

Topic:  Traumatic Brain Injury: Mental Health Considerations
Presenter:
  Dr. Joel Solomon
Date:  Friday, April 6, 2018
Time: 10:00 AM to 12:00PM
Location: Rancho Cordova City Hall, 
2729 Prospect Park Drive, 
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 (map)

Doors Open at 9:00AM
Networking starts at 9:00 AM

This program will benefit LMFT, LPCC, LEP and LCSW licensees and pre-licensees by providing information regarding symptoms of TBI across the severity spectrum, as well as evidence-based treatment modalities, presented by a licensed clinical neuropsychologist who works primarily with TBI survivors through Mercy General Hospital and its grand-funded Home and Community Reintegration Program for TBI Survivors.

Includes: 
Breakfast and meets the qualifications for 2 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.  Sacramento Valley Chapter of California Marriage and Family Therapist CAMFT CEPA CE Provider #62279 CE Credit will be awarded after the completion of the course via email. 

No CEs will be awarded to persons arriving late or leaving early. Partial CE credit will not be awarded.


Workshop Information:
More than 2.5 million people suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI) each year, and more than 5.3 million people live with the long-term effects of TBI. Brain injury can impact functioning across many domains, including cognitive, behavioral, physical, emotional, occupational, and interpersonal functioning. Psychiatric symptoms are very common in this population, yet mental health providers are often uncomfortable with or not knowledgeable about TBI and its role in these symptoms. This presentation will provide a general overview of TBI, including definition, prevalence, neuropathology, symptoms, and recovery, and highlight important clinical considerations for working with this population as a mental health provider. 

This presentation will cover brain injury basics (e.g., definition, prevalence, neuropathology, recovery following TBI), assessment (e.g., clinical interview), and interventions, including concussion management, development of compensatory strategies, and utilization of community resources.

Schedule:
9:00 am Registration Starts
9:00am - 9:45am - Networking 
9:45am - 10:00am - Announcements
10:00am - 11:00am 
- Workshop
11:00am - 11:10am - Break
11:10am - noon - 
workshop
noon - Workshop Ends

Learning Objectives:
Identify common symptoms of TBI in the context of presenting complaints
Implement concussion management strategies with individuals with acute or chronic post-concussion symptoms.
Apply TBI-related mental health considerations to interventions with clients


Presenter Bio:
Joel Solomon, Psy.D. is a licensed clinical neuropsychologist. He completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at Kaiser Permanente, Sacramento and has worked for Mercy General Hospital since 2009. Located at the Outpatient Rehabilitation Center in Citrus Heights, he specializes in working with TBI survivors through comprehensive neuropsychological evaluations, concussion assessment and management, education and counseling regarding TBI for individuals and families, facilitating TBI psychoeducation and support groups, and providing public and professional education regarding TBI.


Register and pay online 

Early registration ends Thursday, March 29, 2018 Early registration rates:

2018 Licensed, Associate or Affiliate Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $20

2018 Pre-Licensed Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $15

Non-Member: $30

Starting Friday, March 30, 2018 rates:

2018 Licensed, Associate or Affiliate Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $25

2018 Pre-Licensed Member of SVC-CAMFT or a local chapter of CAMFT: $20

Non-Member: $35

Registration Ends Thursday, April 5, 2018

Walk-in Registration on the day of the event is an additional $5 and is not guaranteed and is based upon availability.  

For information on joining SVC-CAMFT or renewing your membership for 2018 please email: info@svccamft.org


Registration Policy 
Effective January 1, 2018 SVC-CAMFT event registration must be paid online except with prior approval.  Registration dates and fees may vary and are subject to change without notice.  Event discounts prices and discount periods may or may not be offered.  Event registration is deemed complete during the registration period in which registration payment is received.  Incomplete or unpaid registration will be cancelled and removed at the end of each registration period.  


Refund Policy 
Cancellations received more than 7 days prior to an event may be subject to an administrative fee to cover costs of the initial transaction.  No shows, failure to attend, and cancellations 7 or fewer days prior to an event for any reason are non-refundable, including registrations received fewer than 7 days prior to an event. No credit, refunds, or price adjustments will be given for typographical advertisement errors. A $25 fee in addition to the registration fee will be charged for insufficient funds, denied credit cards, or charge-backs. By registering for the event you agree to the terms of the Refund Policy.

Grievance Policy 
is located here.

To request accommodations for a disability for any of our events contact our Administrative Assistant at info@svccamft.org



******************

2018 Upcoming Events\Workshops

  • Fri, March 02, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, March 02, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, April 06, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, April 06, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, May 04, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, May 04, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, June 01, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, June 01, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, July 27, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, September 07, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, September 07, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, October 05, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, October 05, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, November 02, 2018 8:30 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
  • Fri, November 02, 2018 9:00 AM Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670




  • Upcoming Board Meetings

    Board Meetings are FREE for anyone to attend BUT you MUST register so we have an accurate headcount.

    To Register click on the board meeting(s) you wish to attend.

    Fri, March 02, 2018 12:30 PM
    Rancho Cordova City Hall

    April Board Retreat
    Sat, April 07, 2018 10:00 AM
    TBD

    June Board Meeting
    Fri, June 01, 2018 12:30 PM
    Rancho Cordova City Hall

    September Board Meeting
    Fri, September 07, 2018 12:30 PM
    Rancho Cordova City Hall

    November Board Meeting
    Fri, November 02, 2018 12:30 PM
    Rancho Cordova City Hall


     
     






    Special Feature
    (If you would like your article published in our newsletter please email info@svccamft.org)

    Parent Blaming - School Shootings

    by Heather Cassandra Blessing, LMFT

    So like most of those who heard the tragedy of the recent school shooting (and all of those before it), I was deeply saddened and it shook me to the core.  But my reason was different.  I am one of THOSE parents.  The parents that people blame for raising a child who would do that.  My daughter has not terrorized people to that extent, but I used to worry she would, actually I still do.  Other moms have also felt this way - including a mom of a child with reactive attachment disorder and a mother who's child had an undiagnosed mental illness at the time she wrote the blog the child was later diagnosed with BiPolar Disorder.  A client upon seeing the recent Dr. Phil episode on the latest shooting wrote me 

    "...this is how Dr. Phil was explaining the traits of the shooter at the latest high school tragedy in Florida.  Unfortunately the traits sound so familiar to me……Just thought I’d share with you.  These are deadly combinations…….. 
    Core Traits
    Dark Triad
    Lack of Self Control
     Psychopathy NarcissismMachiavellianism
     non-empathetic Grandios unemotional
     No remorse Selfish Gratification detached
     Disinhibited Egotistical amoral
       deceptive
       manipulative
    this could be my ......"

    My daughter has all of the above traits.  My daughter has also been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and reactive attachment disorder.  I fought tooth and nail to get her the help she needs.  From wilderness camps, to dual diagnostic recovery programs, inpatient therapy, outpatient therapy, Neurofeedback, EMDR, CBT, DBT, PICT, Reward Systems, ABA, starting minimalist and increasing rewards, taking things away, letting her choose her rewards, homeschooling, alternative schooling, mainstreaming, self-contained special education classrooms, group homes, parent\child therapeutic retreats, and about anything else you can think of.  Still before she was 18 a picture of my daughter holding a gun gangster style on her facebook page appeared.  My daughter had 24x7 care, we believed she never was unsupervised (turns out she was often able to sneak off campus and still be back in time to catch the bus and she was awesome at telling one special education teacher she needed her "quiet time" and she was allowed to walk to the other special needs teacher's classroom - but no phone calls happened so she just left campus and not to where she told the teacher she was going).

    No matter how hard I tried, she managed to get into trouble or have problems.  This is how I became a therapist.  Working in the computer field, I honestly believed if I just learned enough, I would find how to "cure" my daughter.  I am glad she came into my life (when she was 4 years old), it made me a better person.  

    Sadly, while I feel like I have become a better person, a large majority of the population would say I am a horrible parent and blame me for her mental illnesses and problems.  We are a population that always looks for who to blame so we, as a people, do not have to look at ourselves.  

    I am not saying every shooter's parents do not hold any burden or have done no wrong, but I am saying we have to look at the whole picture.  We cannot just place blame on people just so we feel better.  We need to look at ourselves and what we can do to make changes.

    My daughter committed a crime against me.  It was a felony.  It took more than 2 years for the court system to charge her with the crime.  During those 2 years, she was living on the street, she had overdosed on drugs several times, and had a lot of misdemeanors, but was just given tickets to show up to court and she wouldn't.  I was afraid there might not be much time left to save her.  So I made a choice, I approved pressing charges against her for the crime in hopes of getting her off the street and getting her help.  The District Attorney told me what a horrible mother I was.  She even pled with me not to do this to my daughter.  She said horrible things to me and about my parenting.  It was hard to stand my ground.  As my daughter broke no contact orders with me, I argued with the Sheriff's department that it was breaking the no contact order and yes I was aware of how horrible I sounded as a parent reporting my daughter, heck even having a no contact order on her.  Several times they even refused to take a report and I had to go in a second time to talk to the supervisor in charge to have the report filed.

    I am THAT parent.  I had teachers and principals and parents calling CPS when she was a minor and sending me hate email, mail and even phone calls when she was no longer a minor.  Everything I tried was never enough.

    Sometimes in the overwhelming moments of trying to get our children help, we do make mistakes.  We yell, we cuss, we try to do the right things and we fail.  We are not perfect.  My daughter could have been the one to do a school shooting.  I know all versions of our family history would be gone over and there would be some easy to pick out "moments" that outsiders may think was the reason she shot up a school.  

    We must not look for the easy answers and the easy blame.  It is not solely guns, or mental illness or bullying, or lack of healthcare or single parents, or bipolar, or autism, or adoption, it is everything combined and we may not ever really know the answer, but we need to try to look beyond the quick fix and easiest blame.

    The family that took in the Florida school shooter, only had him living with them for a few months.  They honestly did not see any signs, they stated even looking back they didn't see any warning flags.  On blogs, comments in articles, and even press releases, I see people trying to blame that family, who had NOTHING to do with raising him as he was an adult when he moved it to their house after his adoptive mother died.  Yet they are easy targets.  How did they not know?  They had to know.  They are covering something up.

    I work with families who have children\ young adults, that have similar behaviors to these shooters.  We need to look into ways of helping them help their children without blaming them.  The world is not black and white, good and evil, although we often need to feel it is that way to try to make sense of it.  

    I also have to state that before I was a parent of special needs children, I used to judge parents who did not seem to have control of their children.  Well I walked more than a mile in their shoes and I no longer judge others.  We need to judge less and help more.

    I also want to tie this back to our Ethics Corner - “7.5 PRO BONO SERVICES: Marriage and family therapists are encouraged to participate in activities that contribute to a better community and society, including devoting a portion of their professional activity to services for which there is little or no financial return.”  Consider what you can do to help make the world a better place and help reduce violence.

    ----------------------------

    The views expressed in the Special Feature Articles do not necessarily reflect the Sacramento Valley Chapter of CAMFT or CAMFT. They should be understood as the personal opinions of the author. No information in this article will be understood as official.  Other views and commentary are welcome and will be published as long as they are respectful and stick to the topic.
     


    Letters to the Editor
    Welcome to the Letters to the editor Section.  We want to hear what you want to say about SVC-CAMFT, CAMFT, current events and issues.  Please see below guidelines on submitting a letter.



     We Have No Letters to the Editor!  Let your voice be heard!  Write a letter to the editor!
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     Letters to the Editor Guidelines
    • You must be a current SVC-CAMFT member.
    • You cannot be a SVC-CAMFT board member or employee.
    • It must be no more than 250 words.
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    • Please send your letters to info@svccamft.org
    • If you do not get a response back within 2 days that it has been received please email back.
    • ALL LETTERS RECEIVED WILL RECEIVE A RESPONSE THAT IT HAS BEEN RECEIVED AND WILL BE IN THE NEXT NEWSLETTER.
    • If there is a problem with the letter (language, misspellings, length or appropriateness) you will receive an email back with the reason for the rejection and a chance to fix the problem and send it back in. 

     

                                                               
    Psyched about Books and Movies

    Welcome to "Psyched about Books and Movies!"  Each month we include a book or movie review by one of our readers.  Please see below guidelines on submitting a review.  


    Title: The Hoarder In You: How to Live a Happier, Healthier, Uncluttered Life
    Director: Dr. Robin Zasio
    Copyright: 2012, Rodale
    Reviewer: Heather Blessing, LMFT
    Review:  This is an easy to read book that pretty much everyone could use (unless you are one of those very minimalist people).  I have already started decluttering a lot of my life based on this book.  It has great easy to do ideas and it is not text book or boring.  I have loaned my copy to a few clients who loved it.

     

    Book/Movie Review Submission Policy

    All reviews are not to exceed 1000 key strokes.
    Your review should include the title, a short synopsis about why you like or dislike it, and the author’s name & publication date.You can also include a picture of the book and/or movie. After review, we will publish your review in our next newsletter. Reviews submitted that are longer than 1000 characters will be returned for editing. It is best to type your review in a Microsoft Word document to note how many key strokes (characters with spaces), how big your review is, and for your own record keeping. You can then copy and paste it into the online submission form located here (http://www.svccamft.org/Newsletter.html) To learn more about checking your review for key strokes, spelling grammar and size click below: (http://www.svccamft.org/How_to_check_review_in_microsoft_word.doc).

    It is your responsibility to check for spelling and grammar errors.  Reviews must be received by the 20th of the month in order to appear in the next newsletter.

    You can submit your review by: Visiting our webpage: www.svccamft.org

    Mailing it in: P.O. Box 163385, Sacramento, CA 95816

     


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