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Bria McCalpin | Advanced Clinical Intern

When you face changes in your life it can spark a mixture of emotions. Your response might be excitement to move into the unknown, or maybe concern over what change might entail. Change demands individual growth, taking necessary steps to use and build on the capabilities you already have, but it’s hard work! Life is always changing though, so if you’re caught in not knowing how to step into changing with it, then let’s work to get you feeling comfortable with growth. Relationships within change can also be a struggle! Friendships, family dynamics, companionship, your own relationship with your self- they’re meant to be supportive but that isn’t always the case. Not feeling like you have a healthy support system in your corner can be overwhelming and isolating. 

If you’re facing a sudden change, one that you didn’t choose or prepare for, then let’s get you feeling grounded and connected! We’ll ask together, “Is this healthy for me or not?” There is beauty in community and knowing you don’t have to face change on your own. I would be glad to join the people in your life who hope to see you improve, one step at a time in forward  motion towards wellness. Change is scary, but you have resources within you to embrace change. Plus, we’ll work to improve and increase your support network in our work together, leaving you feeling connected and celebrated in relationships. 

Our work together has to be collaborative, built on mutual partnership. We know you’re the best expert on your life, and I know a thing or two about internal change! Therefore, we need to combine our expertise in order to explore the best options for resolving the past, being present now, and planning for the future. We will also need to be patient  together, because true and deep change takes time and effort. We will use storytelling to explore and make meaning of your life experiences. I’m excited to see what untapped potential and creativity we discover and leverage to achieve new possibilities.  The aim of therapeutic conversations is to help move through any stuck feelings and toward growth and healing.

“Family” stirs up different meaning for each person, mostly because each of us comes from a unique family structure. Coming from a single parent household for the better part of my life, my definition of family was influence by “it takes a village.” Despite experiencing limited therapeutic resources and the stigma in the Black community around mental health, I was inspired me to supply individuals with tools to have healthy relationships, i.e., in family, in friendship, and in romantic connections. As a Black person, I hope to do my part to undo the negative association with therapy in my community. While earning my Masters in Couple and Family therapy, I am increasingly encouraged to not lose my determination in providing to others, especially for all underrepresented communities. 

Deciding to participate in therapy is not an easy task, but it can be one of the most beneficial relationships in your life. If you find yourself relating to me as your therapist or feel inspired to find one for your life, I would love to join your team. Feel free to schedule an appointment with me so change and challenges in your life don’t have the last word. 

Therapeutic Orientation & Technique: 

Collaborative Language Systems Theory

Play Therapy

 

Bria’s Areas of Specialty & Background

 

Dating & Relationships

POC, Multicultural, & Black Concerns

Life Transitions

Attachment

Pre-Marital & Couples

Sexuality & Identity

Family Therapy

Children & Adolescents

 

Academic Background

Student M.A. in Couple and Family Therapy, Adler University, Chicago, IL

B.S. in Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana-Champaign, IL

Testimonials

“Being a sole caretaker for my grankids, one with ADHD, is sometimes an overwhelming responsibility and in many ways stretched me beyond what I thought I was capable of. In my work with Bria, I was able to have a moment to breathe, asses where me and my family were at, and by supporting myself, better support my grandchildren. She really helped me gain perspective and create a plan.”

-AC

“It’s easy to feel scared to share, especially fearing my raw emotions are too big or will get best of me. Bria actively listens, and her patience and presence helped me move from dreading therapy to looking forward to spending time together.”

-BK

“My husband and I realized our daughter had unhealthy coping mechanisms well after they showed up in her life. It was a shock! I wanted my baby to get the care she needed, but it took some couples work with Bria to realize that our parental relationship had a big part of why my daughter was feeling a negative impact. It was a moment of humility and learning that I think only took place with the grace and direction we got from our work with Bria.”

-JS

“Working with Bria has been such a POSITIVE experience! Even thought some of the subject matter we cover is difficult, Bria bring so much light to our conversations. I can’t remember a session where we didn’t have at least one good laugh together.”

-RP

Articles by Bria 

Articles by Bria coming soon! See other posts by Optimum Joy therapists.
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