“Psychotherapy allows one to recognize how problems are interconnected to past and present contexts. Resolution is understanding this pattern and being empowered to change for the better and find peace for oneself.”
- Dr. Kenneth Silvestri
I am often asked how I personally chose to become a Family Therapist. This is an important question, which I respect, especially when someone is interested in entering a therapeutic relationship. Family Therapists come from many different backgrounds and use various treatment methods. They do, however, share a common perspective: looking at an individual's problem(s) through the lens of relationships within the family and community.
My primary training, in an interdisciplinary doctoral program at Columbia University (Family and Community Studies), was comprised of studies in Anthropology, Psychology and Education. My post-doctoral work was at the Ackerman Institute for Family Therapy and the Family Institute of New Jersey. I am also a Certified Classical Homeopath, and one of a small number of professionals who integrates Psychotherapy and Homeopathy. For the past 30 years I have been an active student of Aikido, a martial art dedicated to peace and harmony. All of these experiences have allowed me to continue to grow and learn about human dynamics.
I approach my role as a therapist by focusing on the “contexts” from which conflict evolves and where resolution is possible. Contexts are situational environments that allow for a more holistic understanding of actions, rather than narrow cause and effect thinking. It is from these contexts of life that we learn to observe and develop our character.
I begin my involvement with families and individuals by gathering information through the use of a Genogram, a family tree that depicts one's background using stories and themes. A Genogram helps illustrate the connected patterns that describe one's world.
Utilizing the invaluable information shared I can then begin to construct the relationship between a person’s past and presenting problems. From this beginning I carefully help choose the themes to be used as a focus for reframing identified issues into solutions, through a shared collaboration.
My ongoing role is to be empathically involved with the family system described and simultaneously step outside to see the wider patterns that maintain and perpetuate dysfunctional symptoms. I have effectively worked with couple/marital conflict, parent/child relationships, school problems, depression/anxiety, stress disorders, substance abuse and LGBTQ issues, among others
I use various educational tools, homeopathy, and community resources that match the identified needs and allow individuals to change through their own strengths. I sensitively integrate ethnic, race, gender, and class backgrounds into strategies to resolve recognized problems.
Therapy, Workshops, Supervision & Consultations
Dr. Silvestri is available for individual, couple and family therapy. He also conducts workshops, mentoring, clinical supervision, and staff development on the topics of conflict resolution, communication skills, forgiveness, and stress management. In addition to therapy and workshops, Dr. Silvestri has consulted extensively for schools, businesses, professional practices and community groups.