Los Angeles Chapter  California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

Voices — March 2022

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  • 02/28/2022 11:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Leanne Nettles, LMFT
    President, LA-CAMFT

    Community x3: Community Mental Health

    During their term, each recent President of LA-CAMFT has selected a key word which developed as a theme and a vision for their presidency, words like Inclusion, Celebration, Teamwork, and Compassion. When considering my own theme, the key word I have chosen to guide my presidency is “Community.

    There are 3 main aspects of community that I hope to emphasize this year: (1) Community Mental Health, (2) rebuilding community in a time of social distancing during the pandemic, and (3) the community aspect of DEI (Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion) that often goes ignored: belonging. For this President’s Message, I’d like to focus on Community Mental Health (CMH).

    I have worked in CMH throughout all of my therapeutic career since grad school. I started as an intensive in-home Clinician in a Full-Service Partnership (FSP) program, and have grown into leadership positions as a Referral Manager, Clinical Supervisor, and now Clinical Manager of School-Based Services at D’Veal Family and Youth Services. Throughout my experience thus far doing agency work, one thing that continues to unnerve me is when I hear people share that they work in CMH, and others respond with something like “*Deep groan* I’m so sorry. At least you’ll get your hours quick so you can move outta there and into private practice soon.”

    Ok, so I get it. CMH can be hard, unpredictable, and for many people, overwhelming. There’s definitely reform needed on a systemic level. And with the many horror stories people tell (DMH paperwork, anyone?), it can feel demoralizing and impossible to sustain. But I would like to change the narrative. I confidently believe that CMH doesn’t need to be just a stepping stone into private practice, but can be a sustainable long-term career!

    So hear me out, I’m not knocking private practice. If that is the route a person has passion to pursue for their career, then go for it! LA-CAMFT has lots of supports and opportunities for people in private practice. And while that is an amazing option for some, it is not the only option to having a successful therapeutic career. With over 700 county-contracted provider locations in Los Angeles, there are numerous Clinicians in CMH who devote their energy to working with those clients with the highest needs, but the least resources to garner affordable care. Clients who have often been victimized by community trauma and systemic oppression across generations. Clients that reflect the family and community in which I grew up.

    These clients have so much intrinsic worth and value, and the capacity for incredible resilience and growth. And I believe they deserve to have high-quality, collaborative mental health services from well-trained providers instead of a revolving door of therapists. But when Clinicians in CMH transition from bright-eyed to burnt-out, is there another answer than to escape? I’d like to pose an alternative: that we join together to rally around those in CMH systems to provide them with support, advocate systemic reform, and help them on their way to a sustainable career within CMH! But how do we start?

    Two ways LA-CAMFT is helping to support those starting out in their journey toward licensure within CMH is through The 3000 Club and Mentorship. Spearheaded by Board member Carissa Lataillade and Tyana Tavakol, The 3000 Club is a special interest group designed to support pre-licensed members through networking events, workshops, and advocacy, all at no cost! This year, we will be working together on increasing LA-CAMFT’s outreach to pre-licensed Clinicians in Los Angeles who work in CMH so they know they have a supportive place where they belong in LA-CAMFT. For more information, visit the 3000 Club or email Carissa or Tyana at prelicensed@lacamft.org.

    Led by President-Elect, Christina “Tina” Cacho Sakai, our Therapist of Color Mentorship Program will be matching the first round of our mentors and mentees this month, and will start our next round in July 2022. If you or anyone you know is a Therapist of Color, and especially if you have experience in CMH and would like to help others grow their career within CMH, please consider becoming a mentor! For more information, visit the Therapist of Color Mentorship Program or contact tocmentorshipprogram@lacamft.org.

    If you’re reading this and work in or are considering CMH as a career option, don’t be discouraged! LA-CAMFT is a place for you, and we want to know how we can better support you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at President@lacamft.org if you have ideas or would like to get more involved.

    Until next time, blessings.

    Leanne Nettles

    Leanne Nettles, LMFT is a School-based Clinical Program Manager in a community-mental health agency and an Adjunct Professor at Pacific Oaks College. She specializes in child and adolescent therapy, while practicing and supervising from a systemic and structural therapy approach. Leanne works to advocate for cultural diversity and equity within the field, and is passionate about training quality mental health professionals to serve low income, historically disenfranchised communities using a team-based, collaborative approach.

  • 02/28/2022 10:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    March 2022
    Law & Ethics Online Workshop

    Sunday, March 20, 2022
    9:00 am-3:30 pm

    Meets BBS requirements for mandatory 6 CEUs/Ethical Education

    Via Zoom

    6 CEUs

    Sponsored by

    Defining and Redefining the Standard of Care
    for Mental Health Practitioners:
    Clinical, Ethical and Legal Considerations

    Dr. Ofer Zur, Ph.D.

    This interactive training reviews standard of care practices that mental health practitioners need to know while also using a critical approach to examining myths and redefining best practices for standards of care. Discussions will include clinical examples exploring the intricacies involved in potential ethical conflicts and ways to resolve them. Participants will examine the complexities of boundary issues in psychotherapy such as dual relationships, touch, self-disclosure, and interventions outside the office. Concerns and considerations arising through the use of social media and Tele-mental Health, and as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic will  be addressed.  Participants will also learn ways to protect themselves from losing their license.

    Event Details: 
    Sunday, March 20, 2022, 9:00 am-3:30 pm (PT)

    Where: Online Via Zoom
    After you register you will be emailed a Zoom link the Saturday before the presentation.

    More information and register today by clicking the Register Here button below.

    Register Here

  • 02/28/2022 9:30 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Lynne Azpeitia, LMFT
    Voices Editor

    Getting Paid: The Secret to Ongoing Referrals That Keep Your Practice Full

    “I wish I'd thought about networking this way
    from the very beginning.”

    Building a referral network of trusted providers to refer clients to for adjunct services has turned out to be one of the best ways a therapist can keep their practice full—and it’s a sustainable strategy. 

    Maybe you’ll think it’s obvious advice or too good to be true but going about creating a list of people you want to refer your clients to when they can benefit from adjunctive services is how many therapists successfully market their practice, network, and receive the ongoing referrals that keep their practice full. Yes, by getting to know another provider and how you can refer to them, they in turn will get to know you, and how to refer to you. 

    Most therapists discover this by accident after they’ve begun building a referral network of professionals they’ve specifically contacted and gotten to know for this purpose—like good nutritionists, psychiatrists, PCPs, ADD-ADHD-OCD sensitive professional organizers, mediators, massage therapists, financial stress reduction specialists, acupuncturists, etc. 

    Usually the therapist wasn’t looking to get more referrals because their practice was already full or thriving. However, it turns out that by creating a list of people a therapist wants to refer clients to naturally creates a relationship that is reciprocal. So, once a therapist has contacted, connected with, and become familiar with other providers and their services, they often begin receiving referrals from them. This works equally well whether the contact is in person or online. 

    It was a revelation to each of these therapists that by getting to know another provider and looking at how the therapist could refer to them, those providers, had, in turn, gotten to know about the therapist and began to refer clients to them! Each therapist was very surprised to start receiving these referrals because that wasn’t the focus or goal of making contact with the provider. 

    Therapists who’ve discovered this secret often believe that this is the only kind of marketing therapists truly need to do—besides having a website so people can find you online. They also say things like . . . “Gathering names of doctors and specialists who my clients and I like has been the best way of connecting and networking . . . Now I realize I should have done this from my first day of private practice! . . .This is how I initially built my practice and have stayed full.” 

    Try it and see what happens .

    Lynne Azpeitia, LMFT, AAMFT Approved Supervisor, is in private practice in Santa Monica where she works, online and in-person, with Couples, and Gifted, Talented, and Creative Adults. For 10+ years Lynne has helped therapists to live richer and happier lives through her private practice and career coaching, workshops, and practice consultation groups that train, support, and coach licensed and pre-licensed therapists to create and maintain a successful, thriving, clinical practice and a profitable career. Learn more about Lynne’s in-person and online coaching and psychotherapy services, workshops, and monthly no-cost Online Networking & Practice Development Lunch at LAPracticeDevelopment.com and Gifted-Adults.com.

  • 02/28/2022 9:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)


    LA-CAMFT’s 3000 Club
    for Pre-Licensed Therapists

    If this is the first time you’ve heard of LA-CAMFT’s 3000 Club, welcome!

    The 3000 Club is a space for all pre-licensed mental health clinicians—this includes students, trainees, associates, and newly licensed MFTs, LPCCs, and LCSWs—to connect with one another in an informal setting. The 3000 Club is open to both LA-CAMFT members and non-members.

    Hello, my name is Carissa Lataillade. I am so honored to have been nominated for, and elected as, Pre-licensed Representative on the LA-CAMFT Board of Directors and Chair of the 3000 Club.

    The 3000 Club has been an amazing resource for me and so many others throughout our journey as pre-licensed mental health clinicians. As a fellow pre-licensee, who’s an AMFT as well as an APCC, I know how important it is to have a community where we can share resources, provide additional support, network, and develop deep connections with one another as we continue to show up every day, without fail, for our clients.

    I am excited to work alongside Tyana Tavakol, my co-chair, in connecting with each of you at our pre-licensed events.

    Stay healthy and give yourselves grace; we are proud to stand alongside you mental health warriors!

    Hello everyone! My name is Tyana Tavakol. I am a second-year graduate student at Pepperdine University Malibu and am interning as an MFT Trainee at Airport Marina Counseling Service. I have so enjoyed being a part of the 3000 Club, from the supportive and welcoming members to the invaluable resources and information provided at each meeting.

    As Co-Chair, I look forward to becoming more involved in this already wonderful community and working to make 2022 a great year for my fellow pre-licensed therapists.

    LA-CAMFT frequently hosts 3000 Club meetings online which are FREE to attend!

    If you’re curious about 3000 Club meetings and would like to connect with other pre-licensees we would love for you to join us!

    For more information, email us at prelicensed@lacamft.org.

    Carissa Lataillade, MA, AMFT, APCC is passionate about empowering individuals and couples to be their best selves and to thrive. A Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist and Registered Associate Professional Clinical Counselor, Carissa is in private practice under the supervision of Eve Sturges, LMFT. Her areas of interest include depression, anxiety, stress, grief and bereavement, life transitions, identity development, and relational issues. Visit her online at www.paladinmft.com.

  • 02/28/2022 8:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    LA-CAMFT Diversity Committee

    Therapists of Color Support Group

    Sunday, March 13, 2022

    Second Sunday of Every Month

    11:00 am-1:00 pm

    Via Zoom

    Therapists of Color Support Group

    A safe place to receive peer support and process experiences of racism (systemic, social, and internalized), discrimination, implicit bias, racist injury, aggression, and micro-aggressions, along with additional experiences that therapists of color encounter in the field of mental health.

    Open to LA-CAMFT Members and Non-Members
    Second Sunday of Each Month
    Location: Zoom Meeting

    For more information, contact the LA-CAMFT Diversity Committee at DiversityCommittee@lacamft.org.

    Event Details: 

    Licensed Therapists, Associates, and Students

    Event Details: 
    Sunday, March 13, 2022, 11:00 am-1:00 pm (PT)
    Time of Check-In: 10:50 am

    Online Via Zoom
    Once you have registered for the presentation, we will email you a link to Zoom a few days before the presentation.

    No Charge

    Online Registration CLOSES on the day of the event.

    Questions about Registration? Contact Diversity Committee, diversitycommittee@lacamft.org.

    Register Here

    In diversity there is beauty
    and there is strength.

    Maya Angelou

  • 02/28/2022 7:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Chellie Campbell,
    Financial Stress
    Reduction Expert

    Your People vs Not Your People

    Do you ever waste time trying to please the unpleasable? 

    Do you spend hours agonizing over a nasty comment?

    And only 5 seconds taking in a compliment?

    Half of the people in the world aren’t going to like you, and there’s nothing you can do about it.” Wayne Dyer  

    I was shocked when I read that.  

    It was definitely an “Aha!” moment. I had been raised to be a good girl, a people-pleaser, always trying to make sure everyone around me was happy and that I didn’t offend anyone with any statement or act. 

    What an impossible task! Doomed to failure.

    And it made me nervous and unhappy when I couldn’t please everyone.  

    I was one of those people who would go to a party, find ninety-nine people out of one hundred liked me, but follow around the one who didn’t, trying to change their mind. 

    How much money is lost in life by people chasing people who don’t like them, trying to make them happy? It can be a boss, a client, or a family member.  

    This person clearly isn’t one of Your People. Let them go! You will never please them, satisfy them or measure up to their vision of how you ought to be. You’ll make yourself crazy spending any time or effort on them. 

    Look for Your People—pick dolphins to be on your team.  

    When someone asks me how you can tell who they are, I tell them it’s easy: You know Your People because you like them—immediately.  

    And they like you back.  

    You know who your people aretheir faces light up when they see you. Don’t you love that? 

    You can tell who they are when you call them, too. I was making Gold Calls on my Gold Phone the other day and two calls really stuck out in my mind. 

    Call number one: 

    “Hi, this is Chellie,” I said when the woman answered the phone.

    “Yes?” she said flatly. 

    Thinking she didn’t remember me, I said, “I spoke at the meeting last monthI’m the author of The Wealthy Spirit . . .” 

    “I know who you are,” she broke in flatly. Then silence. 

    Eew. I could just tell by the tone of her voice that she wasn’t delighted to hear from me. So I just briefly explained that I had a class coming up and would she be interested in receiving some information about it? No, thanks, and we were done.

    Call number two: 

    “Hi, this is Chellie,” I said again. 

    “Oh, my goodness, really? I am so delighted to hear from you!” she bubbled. “I am so glad you called!” 

    Ah, isn’t that just what you want to hear? The door was open for a wonderful conversation, and yes, she is interested in my class, too. 

    How long does it take you to figure out if someone is happy you called or not?

    Chellie Campbell, Financial Stress Reduction Expert, is the author of bestselling books The Wealthy Spirit, Zero to Zillionaire, and most recently From Worry to Wealthy: A Woman’s Guide to Financial Success Without the Stress. She is widely quoted in major media including Redbook, Good Housekeeping and more than 50 popular books. She has been treating Money Disorders like Spending Bulimia and Income Anorexia in her Financial Stress Reduction® Workshops for over 25 years. Her website is www.chellie.com.

  • 02/28/2022 6:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    LA-CAMFT Diversity Committee

    Black Therapist Support Group

    First Saturday of Every Month

    Next Meeting:
    Saturday, March 5, 2022
    12:00 pm-1:30 pm (PT)

    Online Via Zoom

    Black Therapist Support Group

    A safe place for healing, connection, support and building community. In this group, licensed clinicians, associates and students can come together and process experiences of racism (systemic, social, and internalized), discrimination, implicit bias, and micro-aggressions, along with additional experiences that therapists of African descent encounter in the field of mental health. As the late great Maya Angelou once said, “As soon as healing takes place, go out and heal someone else.” May this space, be the support needed to facilitate that journey.

    Open to LA-CAMFT Members and Non-Members

    First Saturday of Each Month
    Location: Zoom Meeting

    For more information contact Akiah Robinson Selwa, LMFT at aselwa@sunrisetherapycenter.org.

    Event Details: 

    Licensed Therapists, Associates, and Students

    Event Details: 
    Saturday, March 5, 2022, 12:00 pm-1:30 pm (PT)
    Time of Check-In: 11:50 am

    Online Via Zoom
    Once you have registered for the presentation, we will email you a link to Zoom a few days before the presentation.

    No Charge

    Online Registration CLOSES on the date of the event.
    (Registration is open and available until the group ends.)

    Questions about Registration? Contact  Diversity Committee, diversitycommittee@lacamft.org.

    Register Here

  • 02/28/2022 4:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Marvin Whistler, 

    A Few Thoughts About Apology
    (A Short Talk for Toastmasters)

    Over the years I have mediated various types of conflicts. There is one thing that is common to all types of mediations that I have conducted, whether the issues involve trees, real estate, divorce or other matters. Frequently, a simple, “I’m sorry” is enough to bring parties together in a resolution of their conflict. 

    In this talk, I will explore a few thoughts about apology focused on the words, “I’m sorry,” the contraction, “But,” and the concept of accepting responsibility.

    1. Let’s begin with the words, “I’m sorry.”

    I’m sorry can go a long way to repair a strained relationship. However, is it enough to simply say, “I’m sorry?” Sometimes.

    Let’s consider two types of apologies. The first is simply, “I’m sorry.” The second is, “I’m sorry that I yelled at you and hurt you. I was unkind and thinking only of myself.”

    The first example may be enough if the speaker’s body language and tone of voice express regret. However, often the speaker is mouthing the words, “I’m sorry,” to avoid conflict not to resolve it. He is not concerned about any effect his action had on the other party. It is an empty apology.

    The second example is explicitly expressive of regret and will be much more powerful if deliver with a body language that expresses remorse.

    Putting together explicit language and appropriate, non-verbal elements such as body language and tone of voice, can make the words, “I’m sorry,” explode with meaning.

    2. Speaking of meaning, “but” is a word that can destroy meaning.

    When we use the contraction, “but,” we run the risk of nullifying the phrase that comes before it. “But” is a powerful three-letter word. An apology with a “but” is not really an apology, is it? Let me give you an example, “I’m sorry I yelled at you but you make me so frustrated with your whining and complaining.”

    In this example, the speaker makes an empty apology and attempts to blame the receiving party for the wrong. The person who is wronged is robbed of an apology and is hurt once again by the insincerity of the excuse.

    3. We have taken a look at how “I’m sorry” and “But” relate to apology, now let’s consider how accepting responsibility can affect an apology.

    To do this, here is another example of an apology: “I’m sorry that I yelled at you. I was wrong to blame you for the late delivery. I was only thinking of how it was going to affect me and I took out my frustration on you.”

    In this example, the speaker is accepting responsibility for her actions. There is no qualification or justification, just a simple apology. What makes this apology so powerful in its simplicity is the phrase, “I was wrong . . .” Arguably, the words, “I was wrong” are the ultimate in accepting responsibility and beginning to make amends for a wrongful act.

    On that positive note, I would like to close with an English proverb: “Anger is often more harmful than the injury that caused it.” That quote is from the book, The Power of Apology by Beverly Engel.

    Marvin Whistler, Mediator, guides couples through the unpredictable waters of divorce and helps them resolve their differences in dividing property and debt, planning for the care and parenting of their children, deciding on support and their future relationship as well as other issues that will be important for their future relationship. His mediation practice also covers various types of disputes including but not limited to family, real estate, landlord-tenant, and community. Marvin provides online mediation throughout Southern California, is Treasurer for Southern California Mediation Association and a member of Academy of Professional Mediators and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts. Website: MarvinWhistlerMediation.

    This article was originally published here.

  • 02/28/2022 3:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Lucy Sladek, LMFT
    Membership Chair

    Automatically Generated Renewal
    and Renewal-Pending Notifications

    It has come to our attention that the LA-CAMFT automatically-generated renewal and renewal-pending notifications sent to our members are not always arriving in their inboxes. This is generally due to an individual member's email service not recognizing an email as "legitimate," and redirects that email to either a Trash or Junk Mail folder, or in the case of a Gmail account, to the Social, Updates, Forums or Promotions tabs, if they are enabled.

    In order to prevent this from happening we suggest you "whitelist" any of the LA-CAMFT email addresses, from which emails arrive in your inbox, in particular, admin@lacamft.org. Your email provider typically provides instructions on how to do this.

    This is important as the LA-CAMFT membership process automatically marks as lapsed (and then suspended) any member failing to make payment within 90 days of scheduled renewal. If your account has been listed as renewal-pending, meaning payment has not been made, we urge you to visit your account to submit that payment.

    If you have any questions, please reach out to me directly.

    Yours truly,

    Lucy Sladek, LMFT
    Membership Chair, LA-CAMFT

  • 02/28/2022 2:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Catherine Auman,

    Restaurant Review: Café Wuhu

    For starters at this richly poignant little eatery, my charming companion ordered the house signature cocktail, the Robust Symphony, while I enjoyed a gutsy White Zinfandel with resplendent sulfites. We shared the appetizer of Pork Rinds with Pear Grantinee—personally, I found the disodium guanylate to be a touch on the light side, but it was more than compensated for by a flourish of butylated hydroxyanisole.

    Our entrees arrived. My Sesame Battered Chicken came bathed in a gravy whose calcium stearoyl lactylate gave it a sleek texture. I usually prefer methyl ethyl cellulose as a thickening agent, but with this dish, my hat’s off to the chef. My delightful companion chose the Pizza with Buffalo Wings, Carrot, and Bleu Cheese Dip. I felt it could have been enhanced with decanal dimethyl acetal, although my companion found the sodium aluminum silicate piquant and exciting. We shared a side of the Jalapeño Creamed Corn, a chunky, creamy delight, which was ethereal and riveting and actually edible.

    For dessert we split the Bananas Foster on Chocolate Waffle, finding it toothsome and tasty. It was the most delightful Yellow 2G color, exquisitely sweetened with acesulfame potassium and Sucralose. Lesser establishments will substitute neohesperidin dihydrochalcone, which often prompts my charming companion to offer me a breath mint.

    The complimentary rice pudding brought to mind the great MSG debate with the public outcry that it causes headaches and other ills. All the fuss could have been simply avoided by substituting monoPOTASSIUM glutamate—a flavor enhancer which anyone with a palate will agree is far superior. A potential similar scandal is brewing today regarding polysorbate 65—I agree, the 65 is overkill—the 60 is plenty and the difference, although subtle, is distinct.

    We finished our sublime and luscious meal with cappuccinos enhanced by polyethylene glycol 8000—I personally prefer the foam but understand that others may not. The form- aldehyde was barely detectable. All and all it was a superb and softly unobtrusive meal, precisely cooked and clearly fragrant. My only wish is that the chef had used more propylparaben so that we could have displayed the leftovers and enjoyed looking at them for years to come.

    © 2021 Catherine Auman

    Catherine Auman, LMFT is a licensed therapist with advanced training in both traditional and spiritual psychology with over thirty years of successful professional experience helping thousands of clients. She has headed nationally based psychiatric programs as well as worked through alternative methodologies based on ancient traditions and wisdom teachings. Visit her online at catherineauman.com.

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