Guest Post by Layla Summers, MA, AMFT, JD

Layla Summers is an Associate Marriage & Family Therapist (AMFT139715) supervised by Bren M. Chasse at Anchor Psychotherapy, Inc. in Pasadena, specializing in therapy services for children and families, with a clinical focus on the neurosequential model of therapy. Get to know Layla, her specialties, and her services at her website (coming soon).

To schedule an introductory call with Layla, email today!

Layla Summers

Court-involved families face unique challenges that can often be emotionally, psychologically, and legally overwhelming. These families are often caught in a whirlwind of legal proceedings and emotional turmoil. As someone who has transitioned from being an attorney in my past career to working now as a psychotherapist, I have a unique perspective that can help bridge the gap between the legal system and the therapeutic process.

The Importance of Therapy for Court-Involved Families

When families find themselves in court due to divorce, child custody disputes, or other legal matters, the emotional toll can be significant. Court proceedings can be adversarial, tense, and emotionally draining, not only for the parents but also for the children involved. This is where therapy can play a crucial role in helping families find healing and resolution.

Providing Emotional Support

Court-involved families often experience heightened stress and emotional turmoil during legal battles. Therapy offers a safe space for all family members to express their feelings, fears, and concerns. As a psychotherapist, my goal is to create an environment where everyone can be heard and validated, promoting emotional well-being and resilience.

Facilitating Communication

Effective communication is key to resolving family conflicts. Therapy can help family members learn how to communicate more constructively, which is especially important when co-parenting. It can be challenging for parents who are no longer together to effectively discuss child-related matters. Therapy provides a structured platform for open and respectful dialogue, which can improve co-parenting relationships.

    Supporting Children

    Children are often deeply affected by court proceedings and parental conflicts. Therapy can help children process their emotions and develop coping skills. It provides a safe place for them to express their feelings and concerns, allowing them to better adjust to the changes in their family structure.

    Children playing in leaves

    The Therapeutic Approach

    When working with court-involved families, my approach combines therapeutic principles with a deep understanding of family law. Here are some key aspects of my approach:

    Maintaining Neutrality

    As a therapist, it’s important to remain neutral and non-partisan. I work with families to help them reach their own decisions rather than advocating for any particular legal outcome.

    Focusing on the Best Interests of the Children

    The well-being of the children involved is always a top priority. Therapy aims to create a stable and supportive environment for them, promoting their emotional and psychological development.

    Balancing Legal and Emotional Needs

    Understanding the legal context of the family’s situation allows me to provide therapy that aligns with the court’s requirements while addressing the family’s emotional needs.

    Navigating the complexities of the legal system while dealing with the emotional impact of family disputes is challenging, but therapy can be a guiding light. As a member of a talented team of mental health professionals, I am committed to bringing my background in family law and my expertise as a psychotherapist to my clients, and our team is committed to providing court-involved families with the support and resources they need to heal, communicate, and ultimately find resolution in the best interests of all family members.


    Learn More About Therapy Services for Court-Involved Families and Children in Pasadena, CA.

    If you or someone you know is facing the challenges of a court-involved family situation, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Together, we can work towards a brighter and more harmonious future for your family.

    1. Get to know more about our therapy practice here.
    2. Fill out our easy and convenient online contact form.
    3. Begin your journey toward healing.

    Other Mental Health Services Offered at Anchor Psychotherapy, Inc. in Los Angeles

    We offer a wide variety of mental health services to help you at any stage of your mental health journey. This includes trauma and EMDRchild and family services including high conflict divorce and court-involved familiescounseling for couples and polyculesLGBTQ+ services, and group therapy.