Dr. Luisa

About Dr. Luisa

Dr. Luisa brings 11 years of therapy experience into your home. Her expertise and experience far surpasses that of unlicensed "parent coaches" and self-proclaimed internet-experts. With Dr. Luisa you receive professional guidance of a licensed clinical psychologist who has specialized in children and families her entire career.

3 things you should never say to your kids

By | 2018-04-24T22:25:07+00:00 April 24th, 2018|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

We all experience anger. Sometimes it’s directed at our co-workers, bosses, spouses, our friends, or even the family pet. Anger is a healthy emotion. It lets us know when we don’t like what’s happening, and that we want what’s happening to change or stop. A lot of times, our angry feelings escalate quickly, causing us to become overwhelmed with emotions and act without thinking rationally. This is not so healthy, as reacting impulsively out of anger often causes us to say or do things we later regret, such as pressing “send” on a flippant email response to the boss, driving [...]

Worrying: is it helpful or harmful? Figure it out with a few simple tricks:

By | 2018-03-20T20:20:23+00:00 March 19th, 2018|Adults|

I’m a worrier and I always have been. I’m not sure if it’s my genetics, being the oldest child in my family, or the way I was raised, but in any case, I’ve had worry lines on my forehead since I was ten years old. I remember my parents always saying to me “Luisa, just relax!” But as any chronic worrier knows, this is easier said than done. In fact, when people told me to relax, I felt even more anxious because I then believed that the way I was feeling was silly and inaccurate. Eventually, I went to therapy [...]

A case of the grumpies or childhood depression: How to figure it out in just a few easy steps

By | 2018-03-20T16:35:32+00:00 February 28th, 2018|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

People often think childhood depression is a myth. I mean, what could a kid possibly be depressed about? A lot, as it turns out... school difficulties, problems with friends, family conflict, health concerns; the list is endless. But the majority of kids experience at least some stress at one time or another, and not every child is depressed. So how does it happen? Good question. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, 11 percent of kids have a depressive disorder by the age of 18. However, depending on who you talk to, the causes of childhood depression are varied. [...]

Finding the Ugly Beautiful: Why this New Year’s Resolution is Worth Committing to

By | 2017-12-31T23:18:54+00:00 December 31st, 2017|Adults|

I typically think New Year’s resolutions are overrated. Likely because when I make them, I usually don’t stick with them. But 2017 was different. On January 1, 2017, I made a New Year’s resolution and I stuck with it all year(for the most part). Making this resolution all started after I’d experienced some particularly negative life events. Due to these events, I realized my thoughts and perceptions were becoming more and more ugly. I was constantly falling into what we term in psychology as “cognitive pitfalls”. For example, I’d catastrophize a situation. If I ran into traffic on the way [...]

Win the holidays with cheer: 5 simple tips for a stress-free holiday season

By | 2017-11-25T22:50:41+00:00 November 25th, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

The holiday season is here. Wahoo! Or is bah-humbug? Although the holiday season brings excitement and cheer for many parents, the added stress of prepping for the holidays can be extremely overwhelming. It's easy to lose your holiday spirit, but with a little planning and focus, you can be jumping up and down with excitement alongside your kiddos. Here are 5 simple tips to minimize your stress this holiday season: 1. Start early and plan. Squeezing in an extra errand a few days a week is less stressful and more realistic than completing all holiday prep a day or two before the [...]

4 simple tips for raising grateful kids

By | 2017-11-14T23:11:26+00:00 November 14th, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9)|

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, it's likely us adults are thinking about thankfulness and gratitude a little more than usual. But for kids, Thanksgiving usually means the start of endless Christmas lists to Santa, pleas for new toys at every commercial break, and dreaded shopping trips to the mall with your child begging for all things in sight. Every parent hopes to raise gracious, humble children, yet in today's day and age, this can prove to be a difficult task. For kids, gratitude can be a hard concept to understand beyond "I'm thankful for my new Transformers." Gratitude, like many of life's lessons, must be [...]

Go to Sleep Already! 9 Tips to Get Your Kids to Sleep Fast

By | 2017-11-10T23:23:45+00:00 November 10th, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9)|

I’m convinced whoever invented Daylight saving time didn’t have parents in mind. It’s every parent’s nightmare, wreaking havoc on routines and throwing off everyone’s circadian rhythm. While there’s really nothing to be said or done to actually change Daylight saving time, 9 Tips for Getting Your Kids to Sleep really does a nice job of outlining some simple, realistic tips for helping to get the kids to sleep at bedtime. The article highlights the following: Establish a consistent bedtime routine Unplug from electronics at least one hour before bed (I would personally recommend two hours) Get rid of any monsters- [...]

Avoiding the Awkwardness: How to Talk to Your Kiddo About Sex

By | 2017-11-03T18:15:44+00:00 November 3rd, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

“The talk”.... Or so it’s called. But the topic of sex should be more of an ongoing dialogue as our kids grow and develop. In my years of child and family therapy, I’ve found this ongoing approach to be the most productive for healthy sexual development. However, this isn’t at all how I was raised. I grew up in a strict Catholic household where sex was a covert, very “hush hush” topic. I was one of those teens who secretly started shaving her legs and wearing a bra to school without my mom knowing. She acted so weird and uncomfortable [...]

The homework battle: Stop fighting and start writing

By | 2017-09-23T23:29:12+00:00 September 22nd, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Homework. Just mentioning the word makes me cringe and brings back horrors from my own youth. The fights, the worry, the late nights. The hours spent thinking up excuses to explain why those pesky math problems didn't get finished. Eventually, I learned what was behind my own personal struggle with homework: the perception that my work had to be perfect, which led to me feeling completely overwhelmed, anxious, and aided me in becoming the world's greatest procrastinator. If only my parents and I had figured this out in the third grade, those countless battles of hurtful words, tears, and doors [...]

3 tips for guaranteed back-to-school success

By | 2017-08-19T22:22:23+00:00 August 19th, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens|

As adults, we've had years of practice transitioning through change. Yet we still often handle it poorly, procrastinate, and don’t prepare adequately for successful life transitons. Unlike adults, children haven’t had years to practice successful change. A child’s developing brain prefers and responds best to routines- as much as your kiddo may try to fight it by begging for late bedtimes and ice cream for dinner. Routines help children to feel safe and grounded and can aid tremendously in taking the ambiguity and stress out of new situations. What’s more is that children tend to have less anxiety when they [...]