Steven Kelly LMFT

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

I have been practicing Marriage and Family Counseling for over 30 years. I have extensive background with individuals, couples, families, men's issues, and survivors of abuse. Married over 40 years, I am the father of four, and a grandfather. In our marriage of over 40 years, my wife and I created a loving home for ourselves, our kids, our relatives and our friends rich with fun, the arts, engaging talks, great food, hard work, and achievement.

My work is inspired by my family, friends, and clients, and is influenced by my on-going education and personal growth. Each area of my life gives me insights and skills that are applicable to the the therapeutic process. I have reaped immense personal and professional benefits in the service of helping people live more fulfilling and loving lives.

My Philosophy:

We are here to succeed and to live rich and fulfilling lives. No one is perfect. Life is both difficult and wonderful We can't change the truth that personal growth can be painful and challenging. We can, however, change how we look at our problems. All of us can learn to speak more clearly about our problems and our needs. All of us can learn to listen more effectively and empathically. It is empowering to be able to speak about the circumstances that distress us and to be able to express our needs. Skillful listening furthers the bonds of love and trust. Both skillful expression and skillful listening are essential to create mutually satisfying solutions.

When I meet with clients, I bring to the table my on-going professional education about people and relationships. I draw on all I have learned from my personal life as a husband, father, grandfather, son, and brother, and friend. Life isn't easy sometimes. We need resilient self-esteem so that we can withstand the knocks and let-downs of life. It is a universal need to attach emotionally to others--to belong, to feel respect for our sufferings, vulnerabilities, strengths, beauties, and longings. Everyone has needs and dreams that guide us toward what we want, and caution us against danger or pain. My goals are to guide and teach you how to have deeper learning experiences, clarification, and understanding of yourself and your partner. I want you to know what are effective communication skills and what is effective listening. You will learn the principles and skills to find the "us" when conflict separates you. You will learn how to clarify your own feelings and needs--the platform for effective communication and collaborative dialogue.

Working with Me:

I'm a down-to-earth, engaging and a straight-forward person. I mediate between couples who reflexively argue, preventing couples from continuing to engage in the fighting patterns that create more frustration, hurt, and disillusion. I coach people to pause, slow down, take stock of, and describe their feelings, perceptions, and intentions. I explain communication principles and why fighting fails to improve discord. 

I coach people to redirect their ineffective communication styles into more skillful progressive strategies that help create meaningful and productive dialogue. I am a fellow traveler in life and I understand with humility that the feelings and reasons for our distress must be taken seriously. Together we can develop a path to healing. 

Together we implement new strategies, reshaping uncontrolled fighting and emotional estrangement into more loving and gentler relating. Progress hinges on mindfulness, emotional self-regulation, new skills, acceptance, practice and support.