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All the makings of a Christmas scandal?

A lowly birth, a loving family and the big society. Peter Beresford takes a satirical look at social work and the nativity

Sadly it looks as though social work is to be hit by yet another front page scandal in this season of goodwill. The case doesn’t look like going away and there’s already talk of a major national inquiry.

To start with, the case seemed uncontroversial. A new baby arrived, and the social worker’s report highlighted that while the family seemed to be experiencing serious housing difficulties (and some input from parenting classes to support forward planning may be helpful here), a lot of love was nonetheless evident, both between the partners and in their bonding with the child. She noted that despite it being “the bleak midwinter”, a stable-place sufficed.

There also appeared to be some strong support networks to hand. Early on after the birth, three representatives (it is thought from overseas philanthropic organisations) had arrived with gifts for the child. While these were not necessarily suitable and might encourage unrealistic expectations, they did suggest the availability of support to draw upon within the framework of the big society.

However, a very different story soon broke in the local tabloid, which ran a front-page piece suggesting that the child’s parentage was more problematic than first appeared. It claimed the birth father was not in fact Joseph, as had previously been understood, but a more distant and less certain figure. Alarms were raised about whether this was indeed the “hard working family” that had previously been taken at face value by local social services and the young social worker involved.

King Herod’s vizier then intervened to place a particularly worrying interpretation on the conditions the child was found in, referring to a “poor, lowly stable with the oxen standing by … amid the poor and mean and lowly“. In a high-profile speech , he suggested that this reflected “the unhelpful habituation of social workers to families’ poor conditions” and that this was “diverting their attention from the primacy of the child and the need to speed up adoption procedures”.

He spoke of social workers “becoming desensitised to squalor … partly because so much of their time is spent in difficult circumstances … [and they are often] blighted by an ‘optimism bias’ which means that they can put … the rights of biological parents ahead of vulnerable children.”

There have been swift responses from social work’s professional bodies to the political and media profile the case has gained. The College of the Judean People’s Front for Social Work and the College of the People’s Front of Judea for Social Work both said (separately) that this was “an appalling misrepresentation that devaules the role of social work generally and the social worker involved in this case specifically”.

A high-profile charity founder was quoted as expressing her concerns that the disadvantage experienced by the baby, could lead to a “cycle of deprivation” which could cause neurological damage later in his life, resulting in him associating with “vulnerable people” and getting into trouble with the authorities.

The Bethlehem Department for Education reiterated its concern that “children’s future attainment, wellbeing, happiness and resilience are profoundly affected by the quality of their experiences during early childhood. Parents are the most important influence, but high-quality early education can also make a big difference to children’s lives.”

A spokesperson from a local service user-led organisation, however, said: “I don’t know why they can’t just help the family and leave the kid alone. For all they know, he could be an example to us all.”

See the original article here…

Sandra is a ProvenTherapist!

 

Sandra Vogt

Missouri based Counseling Psychologist joins the ProvenTherapists team. Sandra Vogt is specialized in the treatment of victims of domestic violence and has six years professional experience in the field. Sandra is also specialized in the treatment of depression anxiety, and other mental health disorders. Sandra opened her virtual clinic at ProvenTherapy and is available for online chat, telephone, or email counseling session for potential clients.  

Visit Sandra’s ProvenTherapist Profile

Welcome to the Team Sandra!

 

 

ProvenTherapy has a New Addition as Dialectical Behavior Therapist Joins the Team

 

Press Release: 26 Nov. Washington: Nationally recognized and certified Dialectical Behavior Therapist Pat Sumlin, LMFT, has opened her virtual clinic at ProvenTherapy.com, the premier online counseling and psychotherapy portal for troubled hearts and souls.

A licensed Marriage & Family Therapist with fifteen years of trauma-informed clinical experience, her primary theoretical orientation is psycho-dynamic although she has studied extensively the work of object relations/attachment theories, inter-subjectivity and internal family systems.

Dedicated to the advancement of DBT and without hesitation, Pat stated “Dr. Marsha Linehan has had a profound impact on my clinical career”. She admits to owning  every publication on DBT and to address the mainstream obstacles for individuals who learn differently, diagnosed with ADD/ADHD and/or Dyslexia, Pat has written a  comprehensive DBT guide for clients specifically diagnosed with learning disabilities. She has a reputation for creative and innovative approaches, and is known for advancing the field of film therapy with a substantial list of films to offer her film therapy groups, such as Defending Your Life, Awakening’s and Changing Lanes.  Characterized by clients as a “truth teller” and “code breaker” Pat values and emphasizes the importance of diversity, integrity, equality and justice which explains her high regarded clinical competency with vulnerable populations and minority groups.

Devoted to educating clients Pat teaches clients particularly those diagnosed with PTSD about the Middle Path, seeing the world as a neutral place, and balancing acceptance with change.  Two of her key messages to clients are how meaningful the present can be and the importance of accepting reality and the consequences of life gracefully.

Pat started her career by working in a homeless shelter and provided clinical daily managerial oversight operations of the mental health/substance abuse treatment/recovery, and after-care clinic for HIV+/AIDS clients.

Not one to shy away from hard work, she went on to develop and manage a DBT program in a large outpatient mental health clinic.  Providing an opportunity for clients diagnosed with any number of co-occurring disorders to learn self-management coping skills, she made it possible for over 90 clients annually to benefit from either her individual or group DBT formats.

Read the full story here…

Juvenile Forensic Psychologist and Counselor Joins the ProvenTherapists Team

Press Release: With a strong team of 65 professional therapists ProvenTherapy strives to provide the best quality of care. Dubai based Juni Shrestha is the latest addition to the team of ProvenTherapists on the virtual counseling world. 

“When life seems complicated, you can count on ProvenTherapy to guide you to the happier and healthier way of life,” says the new therapist Juni Shrestha.  She is very passionate about helping others so that they can lead a happy, healthy and content life. She strongly believes in the importance of first being a strong individual in order to be able to connect with rest of the world. 

Being a Juvenile specialist Mrs. Shrestha advocates strongly about raising happy children. She states, “Childhood/adolescent years are very crucial as well as important time of life; their entire future is stored in those precious years.” She adds parenting can be a very difficult task so she is happy to be on board with http://www.ProvenTherapy.com to meet and help parents/caregivers.

Furthermore, her therapeutic counseling is tailored around client’s individual needs. Even though the backbone of her counseling adheres to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, she also has profound appreciation for Alderian Theory and practices.

Read the full story…

 

BounzD reviews ProvenTherapy

Proventherapy have made sure that the concept of ‘Virtual Therapy’ connects to a lot of disturbed people and thus offer online counseling and online psychotherapy services for mental health, marriage, or relationship issues through highly confidential sessions using traditional as well as innovative online counseling methods through live sessions, telephone counseling, and email therapy.

The founders of Proventherapy (www.proventherapy.com) make sure that the customers are comfortable with them and they also make sure the customer is completely out of the problem. The services offered by the founders are:

  • Flexible, making sure that the customer can join their therapeutic session from    any private place in and moreover wait for sessions to start in a convenient and secure ‘Virtual Waiting Room’.
  • Convenient, eliminating the travel time and costs associated with traditional therapies
  • Verifiable, making the customer confident that the practitioners on their network are legitimate, highly qualified and ready to assist the customers
  • Secure, most importantly the founders offer a secure way of connecting the customer with the therapist by maintaining high confidentiality.

Read full story here

Press Release: Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Goes Live on ProvenTherapy.com

Arthur Belmont, a California based marriage and family therapist joins the team of professionals giving online counseling service through ProvenTherapy.com, one of the leading online counseling and psychotherapy clinic on the Internet.

The virtual online counseling and psychotherapy clinic for mental health, marriage, and relationship problems https://www.ProvenTherapy.com has a team of more than 60 Approved ProvenTherapists extending ‘healing touch to the troubled hearts and souls’ through online counseling and psychotherapy services. The professional therapists provide counseling and psychotherapy support through live chat, telephone, and email methods round the clock, seven days a week. Arthur Belmont, a licensed independant counselor and psychotherapist, is the latest addition to the team of ProvenTherapists who has 18 years of experience in the therapy field.

Arthur H. Belmont is a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) who has been practicing psychotherapy since 1995. He received his M.S. degree in Counseling from California State University, Long Beach and his B.A. degree in Communications from Temple University in Philadelphia. Arthur is currently practicing in San Diego, California and maintains his licensure in both Florida and California.

Read full story here…

Heaven Is Real: Neurosurgeon Who Once Doubted Out-of-Body Experiences Describes His Own

Is Heaven for real? This is really amazing!

This age-old question has been debated for centuries. Of late, the subject has been tacked in theological circles and has been extensively covered by mainstream media. Many who have had near-death experiences regularly describe the images they saw after purportedly crossing into the after-life. Who can forget Colton Burpo’s story? The young boy claims to have ascended into heaven during a near-death experience back in 2003. His story inevitably made its way into a popular book called, “Heaven Is for Real.” But Burpo isn’t alone.

Photo Credit: LifeBeyondDeath.net There have been similar experiences told in popular media. The latest tale comes from Dr. Eben Alexander, a neurosurgeon who, ironically, never really believed in near-death experiences before falling into a coma. In the October 15 issue of Newsweek, though, Alexander details his purported ascent to heaven and his subsequent change-of-heart.

With a firm understanding of the human brain, Alexander had previously dismissed purported journeys outside of the earthly realm as a byproduct of what happens to human beings in the throes of trauma. However, that changed once he found himself heaven-bound. The neurosurgeon explains:

In the fall of 2008…after seven days in a coma during which the human part of my brain, the neocortex, was inactivated, I experienced something so profound that it gave me a scientific reason to believe in consciousness after death. […]

Very early one morning four years ago, I awoke with an extremely intense headache. Within hours, my entire cortex—the part of the brain that controls thought and emotion and that in essence makes us human—had shut down. Doctors at Lynchburg General Hospital in Virginia , a hospital where I myself worked as a neurosurgeon, determined that I had somehow contracted a very rare bacterial meningitis that mostly attacks newborns. E. coli bacteria had penetrated my cerebrospinal fluid and were eating my brain.

Read the full article here

Magnetic Brain Stimulation Cures Depression Without Affecting Sleep

Magnetic brain stimulation reported to be effective to cure clinical depression which is an alternative to serotonin inhibitors used for drug treatment. Medical bulletin reports, “Strong magnetic stimulation of the frontal lobe of the brain can reduce symptoms of depression and does not adversely affect sleep or arousal, which is common with use of anti-depression medications.” Read more here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/252082.php

Melatonin Helps Hypertension Patients Sleep

Beta-blockers, which are commonly given to patients with cardiovascular conditions, hypertension, and anxiety, often result in sleep issues among patients. However, researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital have recently discovered that melatonin supplementation can improve sleep patterns among patients with hypertension who are taking beta-blockers.

Read more here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/250864.php

Whose Children?

Sharanya Dinesh

Approved ProvenTherapist

Sharanya Dinesh - ProvenTherapist Khalil Gibran is my favorite poet and philosopher; this is what he wrote about children:‘Your children are not your children.They are the sons and daughters of life’s longing for itself.

Contact Sharanya for Counseling and Parenting Support

Your children are temporarily in your custody and you are their guardian and care taker. You have no ownership rights over them because they are owned by God and He has sent them to accomplish a goal or a purpose unique to them. Life called out for them and here they are, as your children in name and form but His children in verity. The animals and the birds seem to understand this philosophy much better than the intelligent human race. The lioness feeds the cub and simultaneously encourages the cub to fend for itself. The chicks are also urged to fly and gather twigs from a very young age. We humans keep missing this fine point somehow.They come through you but not from you,And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.He again says, they come from you; yes, you do give birth to them, yet they are from Him alone and not from you, which is what most parents mistakenly take claim for. The children stay with us as long as it is destined and not a single moment beyond that. They are with us but they do not belong to us; they are definitely not the personal property of parents.You may give them your love but not your thoughts,For they have their own thoughts.Again so true, did we, as children think like our parents? Did we not have different thoughts, dreams, aspirations and ambitions? Did we not wait for the day when we would be able to live ‘our’ life, the way we want to, without being told, what to do, what to eat, what to wear and a seamless stream of instructions? If that was generation gap then, should not the gap be more gaping and wider now? Times have changed very dramatically over the last 2 decades and with it a very tumultuous parent age has arrived. Love is scarce or showered as a return gift for something well done or withheld as punishment at times. The present day children are facing more insecure times, it is all the more important that we shower as much love as we can on them and give them the freedom of thought. Raise them such that they are free with discipline and love.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.  Healthy Parenting
Almost every child achieves much more than what their parents did. They belong to the tomorrow and have to learn from today, whereas we belong to a yesterday, trying to adjust to today for a better tomorrow. We are yet to get a grip over the way times have changed, whereas they are already of this generation. They are planning and dreaming of a tomorrow which we may never see. Is it fair to drag them backwards in time, to our times and force them to think our way, do our way, live our way? We can be like the lamp post guiding and throwing light on the path, we cannot walk that path though. They have to walk their own path and discover their destiny.You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

I initially never agreed with this line, why should the parents be like the children? My parents always wanted me to emulate either one of them and that is exactly what I have done. So why should my son (I need to remember, he is HIS son, not mine) not emulate his Dad or me? Why should we not ask him to try and become like his father or mother? The next line has the answer though; because, life has never gone backwards and time does not wait or depend on a yesterday. It is today and then tomorrow. I woke up to the fact that if I expect my son to become like his father or me, I would be asking him to move backwards, live in a yesterday. As a parent I should be asking him to look at his tomorrow, move on the road ahead and achieve his dreams. Is it fair on my part to ask him to live my unaccomplished dreams and achievements?

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

The parents are the bows from which the children of God as living arrows are set forth in search of their destiny.

The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.

The archer or God has already marked the path over which the arrow, the child, will fly. God simply wants that the Bow, parents, also to bend, yield, string themselves just so much so that the arrow, child, can reach its destined goal. It is the strength of the bow and the flexibility of the string which allows the archer to set forth the arrow swift and far.

Let you bending in the Archer’s hand be for gladness;

For even as He loves the arrow that flies,

So He loves also the bow that is stable. ’

One without the other is incomplete and God loves both equally. He has assigned us the job of taking care of His children and entrusted us with the big responsibility of raising them happily and with joy. Bend yield listen to the child and nourish them with love and joy, God does send forth His children through you and is happy to see them ascend, but He also loves the stable hand of the parent which joyfully raises its offspring.

As a child counselor by profession I am forced to read this poem to every parent because they all invariably expect me, the counselor, to change the mindset of the child. They look me at me very expectantly as if I can wave a magic wand and their errant child will start obeying them or start behaving the way they expect the child to behave.

Counseling at ProvenTherapy.com should be an easy journey, provided you take the first step! The first step is to contact a Therapist... this could be the hardest part because you have to break your mental barrier... but, the journey is sure to be relaxing and comfortable for you! --- the ProvenTherapy Team