Depression and anxiety occur when our usual coping mechanisms fail us. But have you ever wondered where you got
those coping skills in the first place? As a family systems therapist, I believe that our ways of dealing with stress
are a direct result of events in our childhood, whether positive or negative, that shape our ways of thinking about ourselves.
The family plays a major role in shaping our thoughts, beliefs and values. Coping skills aren't necessarily developed
out of trauma. They can be shaped from something as simple as being the oldest, youngest or middle child. We all
play a "role" in our family of origin simply by being part of a system. Problems arise, however, when we leave
that system and enter new relationships. Our old coping skills and the familiar roles we played before just aren't
serving us as well as they had in the past. Together, we will explore these ways of coping and the roles played in our
family of origin in order to find new solutions to life's present stressors.
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