Dr. Miriam Galindo
Miriam Galindo has built a two-decade career based in reaching out to help individuals and families heal from challenging and traumatic life experiences. Formerly a professional social worker in Santa Ana, California, she now directs her own private practice as a licensed psychologist. Based in Irvine, Miriam Galindo additionally provides the Orange County Superior Court with expert advice in family court cases.
In a notable case in 2014, Dr. Galindo served the court by providing a 730 evaluation of the parenting practices and mental health of Tamra Barney, known to TV viewers for her participation in the reality show The Real Housewives of Orange County. Ms. Barney was at the time involved in a custody dispute with her ex-husband, Simon, and planned to put the couple’s three children in front of the cameras for the series.
Based on Dr. Galindo’s recommendation, a judge ruled that the Barneys’ children should not be permitted to appear on the show. Ms. Barney did not contest the court’s decision.
The participation of children in reality shows has become a controversial issue. Many experts and members of the public have commented that the associated stress and the pressures to perform in front of an audience are detrimental to children’s mental health. Professionals have additionally noted that the sudden fame that comes with being on a reality show can just as suddenly evaporate, leaving children frustrated, depressed, and with little other means of defining their self-worth.
The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog
Miriam Galindo of Irvine, California, a former social worker and a licensed psychologist focusing on family therapy during divorce, also assists the Orange County Superior Court system as an expert advisor. Her 20-year practice has often involved working with at-risk children and families. Miriam Galindo’s wide-ranging experience has enabled her to serve her clients with both insight and compassion.
There are a number of popular books for lay readers on the topic of children’s experience of trauma. One of the most popular–and one of the most widely praised by professionals–is The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog: And Other Stories from a Child Psychiatrist’s Notebook. Author Bruce D. Perry established the ChildTrauma Academy in Houston, Texas, with the mission of improving the lives and prospects of children who have survived extreme trauma. A decade ago, he published the book, a series of case studies from his own practice.
Reviews have noted the book’s harrowing, intricately detailed descriptions of how physical and emotional abuse blighted the lives of children in a variety of circumstances. In many of these cases, experts diagnosed severe forms of deprivation-induced cognitive, social, and emotional impairments as a result of trauma. But one of the key takeaways for many readers is Perry’s demonstrations of how compassion, human interaction, and patient, repeated re-patterning of experience can result not only in intellectual blossoming, but also in rich and happy lives.
As a privately practicing psychologist, Dr. Miriam Galindo has offered counseling in co-parenting to many families as they go through divorce. Dr. Miriam Galindo has also worked with the court system as a custody evaluator and co-leads family reunification and co-parenting courses through the Families in Transition program.
Co-parenting can be both emotionally and logistically difficult, as it requires two people to put aside a challenging and potentially intense history to make important decisions together. To succeed, the two parties must commit to open communication that is focused entirely on the children. This means finding a different outlet for frustrations about the other parent, particularly in conversations that the children may encounter.
When children are in earshot, parents must be careful to speak only in positive ways about the other parent. This guideline is applicable when speaking to the children as well as to the other parent, who is likely to be more receptive to parenting discussions if he or she does not feel accused or put down.
Meanwhile, it is important for co-parents to keep rules and expectations consistent across households. This provides the children with a crucial sense of stability and keeps them from taking advantage of what they may perceive as an unstable parenting situation.
Children will, however, be aware that things are different. Parents should answer their questions as freely as possible, when it is age-appropriate, and reassure them about things such as when they will change houses and whether the family dog will change houses with them.
California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
A licensed social worker and psychologist working in private practice, Miriam Galindo helps children and families navigate difficult matters relating to high-conflict divorce. Active within the professional community, Miriam Galindo maintains membership with the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT), an independent professional organization.
Among the many educational opportunities available through CAMFT is the On-Demand Learning Library, cosponsored by Northcentral University, which provides professionals with online access to continuing education workshops. These workshops can be purchased individually or viewed for free, and they cover a huge range of topics, including supervision and private practice management. Members often receive a discount when purchasing workshops through the library, though nonmembers are also welcome. Once a workshop is purchased, access to the video does not expire.
Consisting of more than 40 workshop videos, CAMFT’s On-Demand Learning Library can help professionals earn more than 100 continuing education credits. These credits can be used in earning licensure or completing license renewal requirements for LEPs, LCSWs, LMFTs, and LPCCs. Professionals can also access legal and ethical exchange articles, compendiums, tests, and tutorials through the library.
Dr. Miriam Galindo
The holder of a doctorate in psychology, Dr. Miriam Galindo is a licensed clinical psychologist and social worker. Since 2005, Dr. Miriam Galindo has been an approved child custody evaluator for the Orange County Superior Court.
Child custody evaluations are performed by qualified mental health professionals to help the court determine the best interests of the child in custody cases. During the evaluation, the mental health professional conducts several meetings, including with parents. Here are a couple of actions that harm a parent’s case for custody:
During an evaluation, parents should maintain honesty with the evaluator. They should not lie about material things such as when the relationship with the other parent became serious, the parent’s availability for outside work, and any negative history. The evaluator is trained to recognize lies.
ii) Bad-mouthing the other parent
Do not bad-mouth the other parent and even worse, do not coach the children to bad-mouth your partner. Issues with the other parent should be phrased as concerns, not blatant attacks, and they should be backed by evidence. In fact, a parent can demonstrate he or she is looking out for the best interests of the child by acknowledging the positive traits of the other parent.
iii) Being uncooperative
It is important to cooperate with the evaluator fully. Make sure to attend interviews, answer all questions truthfully, and avail school and medical records where needed.
iv) Focusing on marital issues rather than the child’s best interests
Do not mix marital issues with parenting issues. The evaluation process does not seek to apportion blame. Rather, evaluators want to determine the best interests of the child. Just because a partner is a poor spouse does not mean he or she is a poor parent.
A private practice psychologist and licensed clinical social worker based in Irvine, California, Dr. Miriam Galindo has a private practice working with children and families dealing with the aftermath of high-conflict divorce. Well-versed in the psychology of young children, Miriam Galindo has trained in counseling special needs children as well as their families.
It is estimated that by age 18, one-third of children will have some type of disability. While the child may struggle to live with a diagnosis, the entire family is affected. Many families benefit greatly from counseling during this difficult time, as the parents are the primary caregivers and need to be trained in how to properly handle the needs of their child.
Children diagnosed with autism, ADHD, or any other behavioral disorder can be helped greatly by parents who take an active role in their life and healing. Often in therapy, parents can become co-therapists or teachers of new skills, using techniques to promote better behavior in children. Reducing family stress can put a stop to a child’s disruptive behavior.