When You're Serious About Change
Adrian R. Medina
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Where are you located?
1754 Technology Drive, Ste. 133, San Jose, CA.
How do you work? Method/approach?
Since a quick simple summary won’t provide my approach justice, here’s how I best describe it:
Individuals – Every person is unique. A big part of my work as a therapist is to get to know you, to understand you as best as possible, and to then see what’s troubling you or where you want to go, your goal, from your vantage point. You may be wrought with anxiety, stuck in depression, made choices that haven’t been fruitful, or in a relationship that is causing you pain. Often times, I find that someone’s problem is tied to an unhelpful view of himself or herself. For instance, as kids, we often experience being less than, feeling powerless, unimportant. Often we internalize these experiences as who we are instead of realizing that it’s because of the people around us, usually adults that got us feeling/thinking this way. Discovering these negative self constructs and being able to challenge them where they originated and where they’re stored in our brains is core to my individual work and super effective i.e. with a deep and positive ripple effect. Often, it’s a matter of healing from what others have done to us or around us.
Couples – I practice the Imago model of couple’s therapy developed by Harville Hendrix, Ph.D., a method that de-centralizes the therapist and focuses on the couple in a way that directly addresses the relationship. The couple needs the therapist less and less as treatment progresses. He or she is more of a guide. Meanwhile, Imago relationship therapy also provides a unique way for each person in the relationship to be doing his or her own work/healing. I work hard to facilitate this process in a positive and loving atmosphere between the couple.
I like the work of John Gottman, Ph.D., and apply his research on what successful couples do. I also appreciate the model of Ellyn Bader, Ph.D., and Pete Pearson, Ph.D., who have written about the normal developmental stages in relationships (Symbiosis, Differentiating, Practicing, Rapprochement, Mutual Interdependence).
Family – I follow a Structural Family Therapy model (parental system, sibling subsystem, diffuse and rigid boundaries), plus the use of effective communication tools from the Imago dialogue process, the concept of triangulation, and all that I’ve learned via my work with individuals of all ages.
A good part of family therapy includes working with adolescents. Often times, as parents, we forget how different any adolescent’s view can be from those of adults. We easily forget how old fashioned or rigid thinking our own parents seemed to us. So, with adolescents, a key component is to provide them with an objective, non-judgmental, listening ear that works to understand them. This first step amounts to building rapport. Once engaged in treatment, it will usually make sense to them that meeting and communicating calmly with you, their parent, is a good logical next step that is in their best interest.
For couples work, do we both go to start?
Other questions about appointments, sessions or fees...
“Good therapy, like good relationships, takes work. And they’re both very worth it and full of learning.”
– Adrian R. Medina, L.M.F.T.