Chico Center for Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy and Counseling services for Children & Adults | Support for Parents


Chico therapist An Bulkens, LMFT is psychotherapist and counselor in Chico, California.  An Bulkens specializes in psychotherapy and counseling for young children  (toddlers, preschoolers, adolescents) and support for parents, with a special emphasis on  early childhood psychotherapy, and counseling  for preschoolers and Kindergarten aged child.  She also offers parenting skills support. She offers psychoanalytic psychotherapy for adults.  Her approach is grounded in  Lacanian Psychoanalysis. She was also trained as a clinical psychologist in Europe, Belgium.  Her education emphasized developmental psychology and psychoanalytic therapy. 

Divorce and your child: keep the conversation going

As a psychotherapist working with children I am often presented with kids whose parents have divorced and barely talk to each other.  Each of the parent does not know what and who is important in the other parent's house. This often with devastating effects for the child, who might feel that a whole important part of his being is invisible. 

Even when the parents don't obviously or explicitly undermine the other parent this avoiding of communication is what can be most detrimental to your child. And taking the step of sitting together with the other parent can be the greatest gift to your child.

Parents often object that it will all be in vain, that the other parent will not change. I have to respond to this that this is not the primary point. You cannot control how the other parent acts, does certain things, but you have power in how you interact, and converse with your child. It is important not to want to change the other parent, but to listen to them. Listening to the other parent, trying to figure out where that parent is coming from, will help you help your child. 

Parents often say that they only say good things about the other parent. But for the child it is puzzling: why does the parent say good things about the other parent, but does not want to speak with that parent? For the child both parents are important, and they need to feel that this is reflected in their parents' mind. Taking the difficult step to establish conversation with the other parent builds a bridge for your child. It means that it is ok that he comes from those two people, and he will not have to hide in one house, what he or she is at the other house. When there are no bridges build, what you might be creating is a big inner split, an inner divide in your child. The divide between you and your ex, might be recreated inside of your chlid.

To schedule an appointment call An at (530) 321-2970

An Bulkens    |    Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist    |   MFC 52746

Tel. (530) 321- 2970    |   186 E 12th ST,  Chico, CA 95928