November 26, 2014

Therapy in the Canyon “Open Play Day,” March 30

 

PHOTO BY MARY GUILLERMAN

Therapy in the Canyon “Open Play Day,” March 30

On Sunday,March 30, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mary Guillermin, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, is hosting an "Open Play Day" for children and their moms and dads to visit her play therapy office on Cheney Dr.

On Sunday, March 30, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mary Guillermin, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, is hosting an Open Play Day for children and their moms and dads to visit her play therapy office on Cheney Dr. Light refreshments will be provided and there are sitting areas next to the play room for any family members who do not want to play.

Guillermin has lived in the Canyon for seven years. She deeply loves the unique place that is Topanga and decided to focus her new practice here.

“I envisage this event as a play therapy ‘tasting session’ where children can come and play with whatever appeals to them,” she says. “Children sense intuitively that a play therapy room is not just a roomful of toys but a magical space in which they can stretch their souls and speak of their joys and hurts through the symbolism of the toys they choose to play with.”

Parents are the most important people in a child’s life, says Guillermin, who is particularly interested in working with children ages three to five, and also children of divorced or blended families up to 11 or 12 years, as she lived through both as a child. She is keen to work with this young population.

“Many therapists find it hard to work with children that young because such a large amount of their play is non-verbal,” Guillermin said. “I feel blessed to have a strong awareness and memory of my vision of the world as a small child and young children’s play communicates clearly to me. I know that the child will play exactly what she needs to play to heal, whether I understand it fully or not.”

She looks forward to communicating with moms and dads, stepparents and foster parents about their concerns, hopes and aspirations for their child, as well as with teachers and other adults in the child’s life.

PHOTO BY MARY GUILLERMAN

Therapy in the Canyon “Open Play Day,” March 30

Another view of Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist Mary Guillermin's home office on Cheney Drive.

Guillermin’s goal is to become the local go-to therapist for play therapy with children and hopes to extend her trauma therapy practice to adolescents and adults in Topanga as well. She believes that Topanga is the perfect place for a therapy method that supports each child’s innate tendency to move towards health and wholeness and enjoy the full expression of their strengths and talents.

Guillermin, was a long-time therapist for adults and a one-time Nursery School teacher of three- to five-year-olds in London, England, before coming to California and pursuing a license here.

She is skilled in the practice of non-directive play therapy, the ultimate child-centered play therapy—a la Virginia Axline, author of the classic, “Dibs in Search of Self”—where the child’s lead is followed as her inner wisdom and intuition emerge through her play.

For a short video introducing play therapy produced by the Association of Play Therapy go to Youtube and search for “Introducing Andrew.”

Guillermin (LMFT #52868) can be reached at (310) 422 6497; playtherapyinthcanyon.com; and traumatherapyinthecanyon.com. Please phone for the exact address if you wish to attend the Open Play Day.

Active in the community, Guillermin is Membership chair and on the board of the Topanga Chamber of Commerce.