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The pain of disconnection or conflict in a family can have wide-ranging impacts on emotional well-being and the capacity to build healthier relationships. I offer counselling support for individuals and family members who wish to heal the pain of conflict or emotional disconnection in their family.

When communication breaks down in a relationship it can affect far more than expected. A toxic mix of anger, hurt, resentment or guilt can poison your capacity to experience joy and happiness in other areas of your life.  Perhaps a conflict has gone on in silence for so long that you no longer know how to initiate a healing change.

Where to start?

The wish to repair a relationship may be prompted by a life transition or crisis.  For example, the onset of serious illness in yourself or a loved one, the birth of a child or grandchild, a death in the family, the growing awareness of a parent's ageing or frailty, or the prospect of marriage.  These are events that can cause us to reflect on the quality of our relationships and prompt us to re-evaluate our life goals and priorities.  This is the beginning of healing.

I offer supportive, short-term counselling for adults who wish to resolve a painful impasse or disconnection with a parent, adult child, or sibling.  Together we develop a personalised reconciliation plan, which may include the opportunity for joint sessions with adult-children and parents or siblings who wish to repair connections with the aid of a supportive counsellor and guide.

For some, reconciliation may not be possible. Healing a painful disconnection may still be accomplished through a carefully guided personal process of permission-giving and release, allowing you to grow and move beyond a relationship that must be left behind.

Compassionate counselling can help you overcome old unresolved hurts and anger and build your capacity to create more fulfilling, nurturing, and lasting relationships in the future.


Extended weekend appointments - Offering the extra time your relationships deserve


In addition to daytime and evening availability, I offer extended weekend appointments for families.  During these sessions, family members have the opportunity to offer to each other an unhurried, committed time together to work through a problem or worry with the support and safety of a skilled facilitator. 


Extended sessions provide the needed starting point for safer, less reactive conversations about challenging, vulnerable issues that have felt “too big” to safely contain or address in a briefer session - or on your own.   The spacious time creates an opportunity to experience “surviving” a challenging conversation while remaining present and connected to one’s own, and each other’s, feelings and needs. For some families, this experience has been transformative.


Further information is available.  You and your family members are very welcome to contact me with any questions.  You can use the confidential contact form available on this website to reach me directly now.  You can also reach me directly at my St Kilda office on 03 9041 1456.



Melbourne Psychotherapy Services

St Kilda  VIC  3182


03 9041 1456


© 2015 Carol-Ann Allen

Improving Communication in the Family :

Repairing the hurts that cause disconnection



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