Is counseling right for you?
Are you and your child or you and your partner having trouble relating to, respecting, or caring for each other? Is your family about to make a major life decision that could affect all members? Is a member of your family or your partner navigating a major transition or facing depression and/or anxiety? Do you and your loved ones wonder how best to support him or her? Are you personally struggling to understand and accept the actions and life choices of a loved one? If you answered yes to any of the questions above, family or couples counseling may be right for you.
While I welcome the opportunity to work with all families and couples, I specialize in helping families support a child who is exploring his or her sexuality and/or going through the coming-out process. I also work with married couples when one spouse has realized that he or she is not heterosexual in addition to gay and lesbian couples as they navigate major life decisions like starting a family. As a suicide researcher and interventionist, I also regularly work with families who suspect a loved one may be suicidal.
What can you expect in family counseling?
Whether you come to me as a traditional or blended family, or you’re leading a single-parent household, I will work with you and your loved ones to solidify a healthy family structure and regain balance and more control as parents/partners in your family system. Together, we’ll make sure that all involved have their voices heard and understood so that as a family, you can open lines of communication and build the foundation for a healthy and happy future.
If you suspect that a child or another family member is suicidal, I’ll help you understand the warning signs of suicide and ways to respond appropriately to protect your loved one. I can also work with the suicidal family member to help them realize the value of their own life.
Phil Rutter was instrumental in helping my family after our 19-year-old son came out and revealed he was in a relationship with a much older man. This news initially stunned and polarized our family. Phil helped us all move beyond shock and confusion so that we could understand and accept our new reality. We now enjoy an open and loving relationship with our son and his partner. — Claire
What can you expect in couples counseling?
Simply put, couples counseling can help you to discover the best way to meet both your individual needs and your needs as a couple. Through fostering open communication and conflict resolution, couples counseling with me can move you and your ‘system’ in a renewed healthier direction. If you and your partner have tried handling a situation on your own, or through side conversations with friends and family members, and you’re still feeling stuck, couples counseling may be the answer.
My life was in turmoil when I began seeing Phil. Over the course of several months, he helped me navigate the confusion and pain of my own making. My weekly visits to Phil allowed me to understand and filter my crisis and to become the person who I am today. Phil’s professionalism, genuine concern, and unfailing support guided me through the most difficult personal issues I have ever dealt with. — Dana (It was through the couples counseling dynamic and her partner’s unwillingness to support her parenting strategies and her aspirations for graduate school that Dana realized she would prefer individual counseling. Through our meetings, Dana realized that she needed to leave her husband, and she is now a proud MBA graduate in a new, joyful relationship.)