My expertise is in empathy and compassion, but followed by the love of helping children and their families learn to cope with developmentally appropriate methods. I am Jennifer Decker. A licensed mental health therapist that is currently working towards an independent license.
I have worked in the human service industry for over ten years. I started out as an educator and received a Master’s in learning strategies. I studied human development and techniques to approach a child on their developmental level. As I taught, I found that a lot of students struggled with more than intellectual issues. Some of my students struggled with behavioral issues and big emotions. “When little people are overwhelmed by big emotions, it’s our job to share our calm, not to join their chaos.” Quoted from L.R. Knost. This is a philosophy I remember when interacting with children.
I have studied at the university level and received another Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. I also accomplished a license in chemical dependency. I use my previous learned knowledge in education and combine it with the mental health material and have come to the conclusion that children need a holistic approach to their lives. They need supported in all areas to meet all goals. This conclusion has pushed me to learn more on behavioral modifications and coping skills for children with large emotions, especially anger. I am also familiar with many other diagnosis and practice a simple approach with them-
“We got this!”
As a team, with the child and their family, we will raise the child up by listening, showing empathy, teaching new appropriate skills, and building an environment conducive to growth.
I make a commitment each day to meet my clients at their level and support them to obtain the goals that they have set for success. I believe that a child can hurt just as much as an adult, just without the brain development to get through their emotions on their own. I do believe all people can change and be resilient. I give my clients an opportunity to express these big emotions and provided them with a safe place to practice the skills needed to overcome or cope with their feelings. I also provide them and their family with strategies to help reinforce their successes. I am a little silly, which helps with the younger children. I am also great at listening and empathizing, which helps with the teens. I share compassion, which helps all and their families. It is best said by Maya Angelou, “My mission in life is not to merely survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”