Blog Val Gelsinger May 16, 2016 @ 4:32AM

How to Be a Strong Family When Facing Mental Illness

Serious illness often lands like a bomb in the middle of the family system, disrupting routines and scattering the family members. When it is a mental illness, the impact can be particularly severe, compounded by stigma, fear and social isolation. What can a family do...

7 Tips for Creating a Safer School Year for LGBTQ+ Youth

It’s hard to believe the new school year is beginning. For some this brings the excitement of re-connection with friends, the fun of stationery shopping and the thrill of new learning. For others, however, this time of year can be like the chilling anticipation of a...

10 Tips for Nurturing Happiness

Happiness depends upon ourselves. Aristotle As summer comes to an end, we are all hoping to carry just a bit of the warmth and happiness of the sunny season with us as we settle back into routine. But, can we ever really find happiness? What is the real stuff made of?...

Codependency Part Two

What is a Dysfunctional Family and How Does it Lead to Co-dependency? A dysfunctional family is one in which members suffer from fear, anger, pain, or shame that is ignored or denied. Underlying problems may include any of the following: An addiction by a family...

Co-Dependency

The term codependency has been around for decades. Although it originally applied to spouses of alcoholics, researchers revealed that the characteristics of codependents were much more prevalent in the general population than had previously imagined. In fact, they...

Sleep: The Cure for Negativity in People with Anxiety

Covers on, covers off. Legs curled, legs straight. Window open, window closed. Back, front, left side, right side, repeat. Is tossing and turning in bed your nightly routine? Does your anxiety prevent you from being able to turn off your mind and drift to sleep? If...

Mini-break ideas

Invitations to pause and take a break are all around us. “Mom, will you play a game of Monopoly with me?” asked my 9-year-old son, Jesse.  “Mom, will you come biking with me?” asked my 10-year-old son, Jackson.  Even the dog wants to take a mini-play-break, bringing...

6 Tips for Dealing with a Difficult Person

When I started teaching conflict resolution skills many years ago, I believed that simply using those skills would solve most problems. I was naïve. People kept coming to me and saying something like, “Eric, these skills are great, but what do you do about the person...

Going Deeper: Living a Life Where Betrayal is Inevitable

Trying to create a life where betrayal can never occur can cause us to withdraw, be too wary of taking risks, and insulate us from being truly alive. Betrayal can happen. Sometimes it is as simple as one person agreeing to be a certain kind of partner and later...

About Me

Val is a registered social worker, with her Masters of Social Work (MSW). She works with you to find a counselling solution that fits.