When You’re Struggling Most
When You’re Struggling Most
When I was fourteen, my parents and I found ourselves at odds. We were trapped in a power struggle with no one winning, headed for disaster. My parents’ attempt to gain control blew up in our faces, creating more pain and frustration. As the rules and boundaries increased, so did my rebellion — making life miserable for all of us.
Thankfully, my mom had the insight to contact a family counselor and seek help. At first, I was skeptical and even rebellious. But once we met the therapist, I was pleasantly surprised. I remember thinking, “Wow, this could really work.” For the first time I felt someone heard me, understood my feelings, and let me have a voice.
This experience changed my life. It helped to resolve the power struggles with my parents, helped me through my teenage years and gave me life skills to become who I am today.
It was such a powerful experience for me that I knew this was my life’s work – providing a safe space where others could be vulnerable and heard in working through difficult times. My personal experience, education and training has helped me become a counselor who values relationships. I now see how the connections between family members and other significant people in our lives contributes to our functioning, day to day.
I have two passions in life, my family and my work. Both bring me great joy. For me, life is all about connecting with others. My work allows me to interact in a compassionate and caring way with individuals, couples, and families in need of support. And, in my family, connection is number one. I treasure the relationships that connect us as a whole unit and individually.
To find a balance between the two, I have created a “formula” that allows me to be mom, wife, friend, counselor, and Susan in the midst of the day – no matter the stress or frustration. My formula includes time for work, family, physical activity and continued learning.
This helps me be the best me. Because of the balance and success I have personally experienced from my “formula,” I include this in my work with clients. I help them create their “formula” for a balanced life.
Susan Caso, MA, LPC, serves as a consultant and community leader in the area of suicide prevention. Susan imagines new tools, models, and resources to create open-hearted conversations. She works with individuals, families, and teams to eliminate the stigma of mental health issues and address the often taboo topic of suicide.
As a Strategic and Technical Advisor for MY SISTER LIV, Susan helped shape a safe, supportive narrative in the film. She also helped facilitate hundreds of panel discussions at film screenings. As a Consultant for THE GAME THAT GOES THERE, she advised on psychological safety during game development.
Susan has provided psychotherapy to adolescents, college students, adults and families for nearly two decades. She’s been a clinician in private practice in Colorado for 20 years. She counsels clients with acute and chronic mental illnesses, earning a reputation for success in helping individuals overcome anxiety, depression, relationship issues, and unresolved issues affecting day-to-day lives.
Before opening Boulder Family Counseling in 2008, Susan provided family and individual counseling through Catholic Charities Outpatient Counseling Department, counseling at-risk teens and adults. Susan interned at Excelsior Youth Center in Aurora, Colorado, where she counseled adolescent girls in crisis intervention and stabilization programs.
Susan earned her Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology and Counselor Education from the University of Colorado. She holds undergraduate degrees in Psychology and Human Development from the University of Kansas. Susan studied the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics working with Dr. Bruce Perry, Ph.D. and Brainspotting, Phase I and II, with Dr. David Grand, Ph.D. She trained in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), an attachment-based model for couples developed by Dr. Sue Johnson and Les Greenberg. A lifelong learner, Susan continues to study mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, adolescent issues, crisis management (ASSIST certified), suicidology, personality disorders, anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder.
Susan is Mental Health Director and a Board Member of The LIV Project (TPL), a creative collective aimed at turning the tide of youth suicide. She is a former Board Member and provider for Rise Against Suicide.
Susan is dedicated to creating awareness on the topic of mental health and educating families to create an environment that fosters emotional connection