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17 Dec

Featured Therapist for December, Jamie Rose

Every month, Council for Relationships features one of our staff therapists. This month’s Featured Therapist is Jamie Rose, MAC, MFT. Learn more about her in the below interview!

What makes you unique as a therapist and as a person?

I’m not sure it makes me unique, but whenever I’m asked a question like this, I literally cringe! I’m not a person who takes up hobbies and so I’m never sure exactly how to answer! I do love cities, and I enjoy the ability to just wander around new streets, watching how people live and work. I’m most comfortable across the table from a few good friends, enjoying a meal, laughing, and sharing stories. I find this has been one of the greatest losses in this COVID-19 season, because I’m grieving the great conversations that happen around the table with people I love, as well as those I’d love to get to know better.

What do you consider to be the goal of therapy and what do you help your clients work towards?

My hope for each client is always unique to them, but one thing I always want to help folks work towards is to know themselves more fully and to allow themselves to know others and be known by others. The goal is that clients are more alive in who they were meant to be. Out of this can come the opportunity to be known by others. The hope is that as we grow, we are able to live in community more fully, care for others, and be cared for by others more authentically.

Who is your ideal client?

Most of my experience has been working with families, particularly those with teenagers. I love the ability to help parents and teens learn new ways to communicate and move towards each other in a time when our society often says it’s impossible to find common ground. It’s quite a beautiful thing to watch families learn new ways to open doors to connect with one another.

I also really enjoy working with people who are experiencing anxiety. Anxiety is often something that isolates people, and it can be a very lonely and scary experience. It is amazing to me how powerful it can be for people to walk against their fears and shed light on their anxiety. If there’s one thing anxiety hates, it’s being exposed! It is an honor to sit with folks as they begin to name their anxieties and allow light to shine in the dark, scary, lonely places.

I also have a master’s degree in Biblical Counseling. I love the opportunity to talk about how faith can break into the painful places of life. I don’t solely work with people in the Christian faith but am grateful for the opportunities to talk about faith and how God comes alongside us in our suffering.

What is something your clients would say about you?

I love to laugh with clients. Growing up, and to this day, my family teases me for my corny sense of humor! I think it’s often a welcomed characteristic in the counseling space to be able to be goofy with my clients and laugh together.

I also love to discover what helps clients express themselves the best. Each of us have distinctive ways of communicating our feelings. Some folks are better with pictures, paintings, word pictures, or songs. I love to give others the creativity to discover how to best express themselves and then utilize this as we work together.

What is your background and why did you choose CFR?

As I shared, I have a Master’s in Biblical Counseling. I had the privilege of working within a Christian school here in Philly to create a counseling program for K-12. In that space, I began to recognize how much more progress students made in therapy when parents stepped into the process with us. I wanted to grow in my understanding of family systems and came to CFR for my post graduate work in Marriage and Family Therapy. I often speak of how this work was like putting the degree and experience I already had into technicolor! Family Systems Therapy is a powerful model that offers true and lasting change and fits beautifully into the story of Scripture. I am grateful to get the chance to work with CFR now as a staff therapist. I particularly love how CFR cares for my city and community with the Community Partnerships Initiative and through low fee, accessible counseling.

What is one piece of advice you would like to give people who may be struggling emotionally and would like to seek counseling, but may not be ready?

As my counselees have heard me say many times, there are moments in your life when it may be wise to widen your circle of care. Sometimes that means talking to family or friends, and other times that means opening up to let in a therapist.

I never take it lightly when someone steps into therapy. I truly believe it is “holy ground” whenever someone makes the first call or sends an email to initiate counseling. Change is really hard, and we don’t often seek out change for the fun of it! However, when there is even a glimmer that life can be different than how you’re living it right now, I invite you to take a step towards making the call or sending that email. Things truly can be different.

Describe a first session with you.

My hope is to always help each individual feel heard and known in the counseling process, so first sessions can look a bit different depending on the person and what brings them into therapy. However, a first session is generally a time to hear what brings people into therapy at this particular moment. I invite them to tell their story and to hear what may be concerning them. CFR has a really helpful intake survey called the Areas of Concern Questionnaire that we ask people to complete. This survey is meant to help folks consider if they are experiencing issues like “problems controlling my thoughts” or “hard to trust anyone,” “loss of appetite,” etc. This can often be a helpful tool as we get to know one another and serve as a jumping off point for our first session. More often than not, the first hour of counseling flies by! Clients often feel a sense of relief sharing all the things that they’re experiencing. This is just what first sessions are meant for! I welcome that and truly appreciate those initial meetings.

Jamie Rose, MAC, MFT is a staff therapist at our University City Office; she currently sees clients via online therapy. To set-up an appointment, you can reach her at jrose@councilforrelationships.org or 215-382-6680 ext. 7020.

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