How Can Single Parents Handle a Child Custody Evaluation?

 

Dr. Miriam Galindo pic

Dr. Miriam Galindo
Image: galindopsychology.com

California-based psychologist and social worker Dr. Miriam Galindo serves at-risk children and families through her own practice in Irvine. A diplomate of the American Boards of Forensic Social Workers and Forensic Evaluators, Dr. Miriam Galindo has been working as a child custody evaluator for more than a decade.

For single parents, child custody evaluations can be extremely nerve-wracking. But they don’t have to be. When such an evaluation is ordered by the court or requested by the other parent, individuals should talk to their lawyer about the experience. They will have more information about the evaluation process and will give single parents information to guide them during the process. It’s important that single parents follow this guidance.

In preparation for an evaluation, single parents must make sure they have clear answers about any question the evaluator asks. All answers must be honest and directly address the question. Parents must avoid going off on tangents during their answers and must avoid lying. Part of an evaluator’s training is to spot behaviors associated with lying and it will not reflect well when a person is caught being untruthful.

Beyond that, it’s important that single parents make a good impression when visiting with an evaluator. This involves making sure the house is clean and orderly and that their child’s medical and school records are easily accessible. Meanwhile, single parents must never bad mouth the other parent or make an accusation without evidence to support their claim. Instead, they should share the strengths and weaknesses that they’ve seen from their ex.

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Play Therapy Techniques

 

Play Therapy pic

Play Therapy
Image: playtherapy.org

Dr. Miriam Galindo is a licensed psychologist and social worker in California. Helping families involved in divorce, Dr. Miriam Galindo is a registered child play therapist.

The goal of child play therapy is to assist children in sorting through and communicating complicated feelings. A variety of play therapy techniques include:

Baby dolls. 

Typically involving a therapist and a child with dolls, the play gives the therapist an opportunity to observe the child’s treatment of the doll. For example, mistreatment of the doll suggests that the child may have been mistreated.

Coloring. 

In this creative arts technique, therapists may ask children to draw a timeline of their life and add colors to show their feelings during those times. Common colors may include red for anger and blue for sadness.

Games.

Designed to help kids express their emotions, games such as pick-up sticks, checkers, chess, and other strategy games may build a bond between therapists and children and help children feel a higher level of control and focus in their lives. This, in turn, helps them feel happier.

CAMFT Political Action Committees

 

Play Therapy for ADHD Children

 

Licensed psychologist and social worker Miriam Galindo, PsyD, has worked with the Orange County Superior Court as part of its approved panel of experts regarding child welfare issues. One area Dr. Miriam Galindo works in, play therapy, can be used to treat a variety of issues, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Play therapy can help children with ADHD express themselves, making a connection with their parents or professionals through play that they might not otherwise make. Even neurotypical children can often hide their thoughts, and play therapy affords them the chance to express themselves without aggravation or intrusion. Allowing them to play freely during play therapy helps ADHD children even more than neurotypical children, as aggressive imposition of structure can make a child feel abnormal or unwanted.

Some techniques that can help children with ADHD include helper toys and fantasy play. A helper toy, such as a puppet or doll, can help redirect emotions when a child is upset or struggling. Fantasy play, meanwhile, can turn a disappointment such as a missed opportunity or sad day into a chance to explore one’s mind and diminish irritation.

CAMFT Partnership Addresses Parent-Child Separation at the Border

 

California Association of Marriage and Family Therapistspic

California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
Image: camft.org

For more than two decades, Miriam Galindo, PsyD, has provided a range of child and family therapy services to clients in California. An active member of her professional community, Dr. Miriam Galindo belongs to such organizations as the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT).

An independent professional organization, CAMFT advances the science and art of marriage and family therapy while maintaining high standards and ethics for licensed professionals. Toward this end, it recently partnered with Give an Hour, an organization dedicated to providing hope and help to people who have been faced with challenges resulting in emotional pain, to address the issue of parent-child separation at the Mexico-U.S. border.

Through this partnership, CAMFT hopes to create a network of licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFTs) that can provide mental health services to people affected by the situation at the border. According to the organization, children who are suddenly separated from their parents have a greater chance of developing numerous cognitive, behavioral, and psychological issues, such as anxiety and attachment disorders. Fortunately, LMFTs are experts in handling this sort of trauma.

Both CAMFT and Give an Hour encourage California LMFTs to volunteer their time to serve immigrant and refugee children and families. While Give an Hour plans on calling on its own volunteer network, CAMFT plans on reaching out to members who can either volunteer to assist those who are affected by parent-child separation at the border or help the organization find mental health providers who speak Spanish and are willing to volunteer their time.

Uses for Play Therapy

Play Therapy pic

Play Therapy
Image: playtherapy.org

Dr. Miriam Galindo works in child psychology in a private practice in Irvine, California. One area of child psychology in which Dr. Miriam Galindo specializes is play therapy, a process for children to express complex emotions and explore their psychological wellness through play.

In play therapy, mental health practitioners watch children play in a controlled setting and observe their skills and behaviors. By mastering social, coping, and problem-solving skills in the play context, children can learn broadly applicable skills that may help them deal with unresolved issues. While play therapy can be appropriate for patients of any age, it is mostly used for young children.

One area in which play therapy excels, whether as a primary intervention method or a form of adjunctive therapy, is the management of social, emotional, and behavioral disorders. Issues such as anxiety, depression, hyperactivity, and compulsive disorders have been treated with play therapy. Play therapy can also assist young people who are in the midst of a crisis or who have undergone a traumatic event such as a divorce or a death in the family.

How to Become a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner

 

Dr. Miriam Galindo pic

Dr. Miriam Galindo
Image: galindopsychology.com

As a licensed psychologist and social worker, Dr. Miriam Galindo has dedicated her career to assisting at-risk children and families. Dr. Marian Galindo completed training as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) and obtained practical experience at Parents United/Child Sexual Abuse Treatment Program.

A registered or advanced practice nurse can complete specific clinical preparation and education to become a medical professional who cares for victims of abuse and sexual assault. Nurses who want to take SANE training should have at least two years of experience in an area such as critical care or emergency, which demand advanced skills for conducting physical assessments.

Recognized SANE training must comply with the International Association of Forensic Nurses (IAFN) SANE education guidelines and typically involves clinical and classroom components. However, local requirements for SANE training vary among states, provinces, and countries.

Nurses who receive SANE training and complete the clinical practice component have the option to take board-certified exams offered by IAFN. The Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner-Pediatric (SANE-P) and Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner-Adult/Adolescent (SANE-A) exams are generally taken by nurses who provide services to these specific groups of patients.