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In This Issue
Welcome and Announcements
Family Vacations
Finding a Counselor
CFI Author Resources

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phoneEven Caring Families Encounter Problems...but Healthy Families Seek Solutions

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Bowden McElroy
Salley Sutmiller
Jamie Brandon
Tim Doty

Mental Health Calendar
Summer Family

Audio Clips on Website
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Dear Friends,

Welcome to our May CFI newsletter. We bring relevant articles, announcements and links to issues related to families, marriages, parenting and mental health concerns.
Announcement:  CFI now has podcast/audio material on our website to introduce our services and answer FAQ's.

This month's newsletter:

  1. Mr. Eric Clements writes a timely article on how to make the most out of summer family vacations.  Please visit our blog to read his tips.
  2. Dr. Bill Berman answers the question: what kind of therapist do I need?  He helps clarify the difference between mental health professionals.
  3. Links to CFI Author Resources.

Making the Most of Family Vacations

CFI logoI love vacations. I have been accused, and I can't disagree, of having a Vacation Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. I particularly enjoy family vacations to anything Disney, and trips with my wife to go diving. Why is this? I think a good part of the reason has to do with the opportunity to have fun with my wife and/or my boys. The fun with them, is ten times greater than without them.

There are a couple of commercials for Orlando that have caused me to think about this topic.   In one of these commercials, a father and son are experiencing an attraction. In the middle of the attraction the father transforms into a child the same age as his son. This is initially a bit confusing as to what happened. Then the two boys cast a reflection on some surface and you see that one boys reflection is actually the fathers reflection. The other commercial is of the same concept except this time it's a mother and daughter.

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When I saw this commercial the first time, I told my wife how much I liked it. To which, she replied, "Of course you do, it's about you." To which I have to fully agree. There is something special about sharing fun with my family. It creates a bond and memories that I will cherish forever.

I think I come by it honestly.  One of my favorite memories from my childhood, is riding the log ride at Six Flags over and over with my dad when he realized that there was virtually no line.  We must have done that at least six or seven times. Even as I type this, I can't help but feel that joy again.

Whether it is a multi-week, trip of a lifetime, or a simple day trip, vacations create special opportunities to connect with family members.  As we enter the summer season and consider our vacations, put a bit of planning time into creating those truly special connections and memories.

Some ways to enhance your family vacations can include:

        Involve the entire family in the planning of the trip
        Create family traditions around vacations
        Do a service project together
        Take the opportunity to teach your kids
        Also, take advantage of unique educational opportunities in the destinations you are visiting
        Take lots of pictures and videos
        Be flexible and spontaneous

Click on our CFI blog for more detailed family vacation enhancements.

- Eric Clements, M.S.

What Kind of Therapist or Counselor Do I Need?

Once a decision is reached to seek help to better manage emotions or a life circumstance, the question of who to call becomes the next important decision.  Nobody can dispute the benefit of seeking advise and support from a trusted friend or family member, especially if that help is grounded in Biblical truth.  However, some of life's challenges are serious enough that they require a level of training and expertise that may only be found in a licensed mental health professional.
    In most states, there are a variety of different types of licensed professionals to choose from.  While most, if not all have in common the ability to diagnose and treat recognized forms of emotional and behavioral disorders, their training and approaches to treatment may be quite different.  The following is a brief summary of the most common types of credentials a licensed therapist or counselor will have, and the type of training each has received.
Licensed Marital & Family Therapist (LMFT)
    The LMFT must complete at least two years of graduate level education, resulting in a masters degree, beyond their undergraduate education.  In addition, they must complete two years of supervised clinical experience and pass both national and state examinations.  Their preferred approach is to look at and intervene in the larger system (e.g., marriage, family, etc.) in their effort to help the individual.
Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)
    Similarly, the LPC must complete at least two years of graduate level education, resulting in a masters degree, beyond their undergraduate education.  In addition, they must complete two years of supervised clinical experience and pass both national and state examinations.  Their preferred approach is to focus treating the individual, who in turn may then be able to function better in relation to others.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)
    The LCSW also must complete a masters degree, clinical supervision, and examinations.  Their training has a unique emphasis upon understanding how social, cultural, and environmental factors impact the individual.  They are also very familiar in connecting individuals with community resources for additional support.
Licensed Psychologist
    A psychologist must complete at least four years of graduate level education, resulting in a doctorate degree (Ph.D. or Psy.D.) in psychology, two years of supervised clinical experience, and pass both national and state examinations.  They also have advanced training in psychological assessment (including psychological testing).  In practice, their treatment model is most similar to that of an LPC.
Psychiatrist (MD or DO)
    A Psychiatrist is a physician who has completed traditional medical school education, followed by four years of residency.  They are uniquely trained in understanding the chemistry of the brain, and licensed to prescribe medication.  Today, few psychiatrists provide the type of counseling that other mental health professionals do, limiting their practice to medication management.
    Christian Family Institute is available to assist you in finding the help you need.  Our staff of Christian professional counselors are licensed in one or more of the specialty area described above.  Give us a call or find us on the web.
Dr. Berman image
William B. Berman, Ph.D.

On a Lighter Note

narcoleptic guardian angels

Disclaimer:  The views of cartoons do not necessarily represent the views of Christian Family Institute or its staff.  They are for comic relief and are intended for entertainment purposes only.

CFI Author Resources

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Dr. Dale Doty, Ph.D.
Personality Disorders in the Church
(2 CDs) $12.00

If we can be of service, please contact CFI to set up a time to consult with one of our counselors.  We also provide psychological assessments and evaluations for ADHD and educational needs as well as pre-marital evaluations and counseling.  To view our full range of services, please visit
Timothy Doty, Psy.D. on behalf of
Christian Family Institute

Our Staff includes:
Dale R. Doty, Ph.D.
William B. Berman, Ph.D.
G. Bowden McElroy, M.Ed.
Eric L. Clements, M.S.
Jill E. Butler, M.S.
Salley Sutmiller, M.S.
Lois K. Trost, M.S.W.
Jamie Brandon, M.S.
Amber R. Sherrell, M.S.
Timothy D. Doty, Psy.D.
Stephen Harnish, M.D.

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