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Nutrition and Depression

canstockphoto0173381Nutrition and Depression
Have you ever considered food as a treatment or means of reducing your symptoms of Depression.  Through the research of Nutritional Psychology studies are finding concrete links between nutrition and relief of various mental health symptoms.
Take a look at this Psych Central Article published By Jane Collingwood
Melanie Davis CMHC NCC is currently studying within the field of Nutritional Psychology and excited about offering her clients a wide variety of options for reducing common symptoms associated with Anxiety and Depression.
For more information contact Wasatch Family Therapy at 801.944.4555

Getting Unstuck: 3 Ways Couples Can Move from Problem to Solution

Keeping a relationship running smoothly can be difficult and challenging, especially when you and your partner may want different
things or misunderstand each other’s needs. Couples often become frustrated with each other when they can’t seem to find solutions to problems, and a feeling of “being stuck” begins to develop. When a couple can’t seem to move forward from or through their issues, they begin to question their feelings for each other, and whether or not they should even be together. If you and your partner seem to be feeling this way, click on the link below for 3 ideas that may help you begin getting “unstuck”.

How to Avoid Getting Trapped Inside Your Own Head

Common Therapy Questions
One common trap that I’ve noticed many people fall into is “black and white” or “all or nothing” thinking.  This is the type of thinking where you think in extremes, and have very few options available to you.  For example, “I’m either smart or I’m stupid”, “I succeeded or I totally failed”.  This type of thinking can prevent you from having a full, realistic view of yourself, your values and beliefs, and from making well-informed decisions.
Visit the link below to learn more about this common pitfall, and how to avoid it!

Counseling Doesn’t Mean You’re Crazy: 3 Subtle Signs it’s Time to See a Therapist (PART 2)

Wasatch Family Therapy Depression


Ashley Thorn, LMFT gives a few more signs that it might be helpful for you to seek a therapist, and also some guidelines about where to start.  Finding a therapist can be a stressful and difficult task, but these tips should point you in the right direction.


Counseling Doesn’t Mean You’re Crazy: 3 Subtle Signs it’s Time to See a Therapist (PART 1)

Ever think that you might want to see a therapist, but not sure if it’s for you?  Sometimes people need or want help with their emotional and mental well-being, but they are afraid that if they seek therapy they might come across as “crazy” or be judged in some way.
Click on the link below to read what Ashley Thorn, LMFT has to say about some of the signs you can look for to see if therapy might be a good fit for you, and get a different perspective on who is a “candidate” for counseling.

How to Avoid Damaging Your Relationship with Assumptions – Part 1

empty nesters

Many of the arguments and misunderstandings that take place in relationships come from assumptions.  Too many times we make an assumption about something that leaves us feeling disappointed, frustrated, and hurt.  If we can learn to do away with assumptions and be more direct, our relationships will feel more full and satisfying.

Ashley Thorn, LMFT is quoted in the Psych Central article below.

Click the link to read the first article in a 2-part series about common assumptions that are made in relationships, and how to avoid them.



What It Means to Teach People How to Treat You

Wasatch Family Therapy

“What It Means to Teach People How to Treat You”

Michael Morgan, LMFT of Wasatch Family Therapy contributes to Psych Central

Click on the link below to see what Michael Morgan has to say!

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Getting to Know Clair Mellenthin, LCSW, Clinical Director of Wasatch Family Therapy


PsychCentral recently interviewed our very own Clair Mellenthin, the Clinical Director here at Wasatch Family Therapy. Clair was asked about how she copes with stress, the best part of her job, and her overall experiences being a therapist. Here are a few of her answers:


Ask a Therapist: I Feel Stuck in My Own Mind

Q: I’ve been sitting here for 30 minutes trying to formulate my thoughts into a paragraph but I can’t do it so I’m just going to list feeling as they come to mind.
1. I feel nothing on a regular basis.  For example if I got a call saying that my mother died, I don’t think I would even cry.
2. I’m irritable beyond belief.  If someone asks me to do something I get pissed for them even asking me.
3.  I’m not suicidal, but I constantly question why I’m living and try to come up with reasons to continue on.
4.  I don’t see people as individuals.  I see everyone as a mammal, which leads me back to number 3.
5.  I want to ask my parents, or anyone for help, but I’m afraid of being laughed at.
6.  I don’t even try to interact with girls.  I’m not homosexual at all, I’m still attracted to girls, but the effort I need to put in to get an outcome is unbalanced.


Ask a Therapist: Lacking Emotions in Social Situations

Wasatch Family Therapy TeensQ: I am a 17 year old High School student and I have felt this conflict my entire life, but only now can I ignore it no longer. Amidst all of the discussion about college and ‘finding the right fit,’ I have realized that the major internal problem I have is that I lack an identity, lack interests, lack emotions, and therefore have trouble with social interaction. I am hopelessly apathetic at heart, and I don’t know how to reconcile the true ‘me’ with the image others expect–that of a ‘normal’ person who has passions and desires. I care about nothing–not politics or current events, not my friends or family or other people, not sports or music or art. Outwardly, I am a high-achieving, well-rounded student. I do well in every subject and participate in a variety of extracurricular activities, some of which I hold leadership positions in. However, none of them truly interests me, and I only continue them to get into college. Nothing ‘outside’ school much concerns me either. The various problems of society don’t matter to me, even when I’m affected. Occasionally a particularly poignant tragedy or example will make feel like helping out, but on the whole, I am completely apathetic. The same goes for the social aspects of my life. My childhood, family, and friendships were and are normal, but I do not have emotional connections to anyone; if somebody ‘close’ to me died, I would only be concerned with how it would affect my own convenience. I don’t have any academic, athletic, or arts-related interests either, and I do not believe the problem is lack of exposure. The only things I like to do are things that make me forget my existence and consciousness–playing games or reading a book or watching television, but the appreciation I have for those things is completely aesthetic and surface-level.

Left alone, I would be fine with this situation and content with engaging myself in passive activities for the rest of my life. However, society demands interaction. I sometimes have difficulty projecting the ‘right’ appearance in conversations and social interactions because I never feel anything (happiness at a friend’s success, sadness at someone’s death, gladness when someone praises me). Most days I do not have trouble interacting with people, but the times when I ‘mess up’ cause me great consternation because I am somewhat of a perfectionist and do not want people to think of me badly. I do not believe I have a social disorder because I understand what people mean and what kind of reaction to give–I just cannot act out that reaction because I do not truly feel it and I do not have enough acting prowess to express that emotion believably. People occasionally comment that my expression is too serious (that’s my default expression–blankness that is misinterpreted as seriousness, sadness, etc.), that I do not smile–in fact, I barely move, because I have trouble acting out body language as well even though I know what the proper response is. The emotions I do feel in social interactions are solely derived from self-consciousness–did I smile enough just then? Do I look relaxed? Most of all, do I look NORMAL? This kind of nervousness impedes my acting and therefore my daily interactions. Because I want to look what ‘normal’ is in any situation, I project different personalities to different people, causing conflicts when I deal with them together. I cannot just ‘let things go’ and be who I am–silent, still–in public; I want to look normal, but I can’t seem to force my body to comply.

What should I do? I want to make my social interactions normal so that I can live more conveniently–’conveniently’ in this case means in a state where my physical needs are attended to and I am left alone and not thought about much by others, where I fit in, so that when alone I can drown myself in fiction and escapist activities. If I have a disorder or psychological problem with this lack of emotions–perhaps a refusal to recognize them?–I want to be able to deal with it. However, I don’t think I could deal with speaking to a counselor in real life because my guard would always be up, always trying to act and never expressing what I truly mean. I won’t be trite and say that I am spiraling down into darkness, but this problem truly does bother me.

A: It sounds extremely exhausting to be constantly on guard worrying about the appropriateness of your social interactions, especially when your internal state doesn’t match your behavior. I’m so glad that you are reaching out for help to find your way through this confusing situation.  Yes, it does sound like there is a problem going on, either psychologically or medically. I recommend that you seek help from a counselor to get an evaluation, and to get a thorough physical exam from a physician. There are many medical and mental illnesses that can cause the blank feelings that you’re describing and the feeling of disconnection and despair. While I can’t diagnose you based on an email, the emptiness that you are describing sounds like severe depression. To learn more about the symptoms and treatment for different types of depression click here.

You mentioned that you’re not sure you can put your guard down with a counselor, but keep in mine that psychotherapists are trained to help you lower your guard over time, to help you get to the root of the problem, and to help you develop skills to live a more fulfilling life.  Additionally, a therapist can help you resolve any life events or relationship problems that may have contributed to shutting down your emotions and help you to reconnect with who you are, how you feel, and what you want.

I have seen many clients in my clinical practice develop the disconnection that you are describing after experiencing trauma or loss as a way of protecting themselves against further pain. If you need help finding a good therapist in your area click the Find Help link on PsychCentral. Don’t wait. Life and relationships can be much more rewarding than what you are currently experiencing and there are many, many resources available to help you. Please let your parent, guardian, or school counselor know that you need help so they can support you and help you.

I urge you to get professional help so you can reconnect to your emotions and find joy and fulfillment in your life.

Take good care of yourself!

Julie Hanks, LCSW

Originally appeared in my column

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