Police Officer Turned MST Supervisor Reflects on Similarities

Posted by Mark Shokair, MST Supervisor

Former police officer goes from making arrests to preventing them

At first glance, there is little similarity between the field of law enforcement and the world of mental health. Although law-enforcement personnel regularly encounter mentally ill individuals, their objectives differ from those of mental-health care providers. Despite these differences, there are similarities when one takes the time to look a little deeper.

Prior to moving to Los Angeles and becoming an MST supervisor, I was a police officer in a major city with the major objective of protecting life and property. From the systemic perspective, law enforcement is in place to ensure order in our society and laws are followed. They are, in essence, the initial step that society put into place to impose consequences, followed by the courts and the correctional system. 


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Topics: MST nine principles, analytic process

MST Treatment Unites Systems to Save Child

Posted by Janice Wolfinger, MST Clinical Supervisor

MST therapist works with all systems surrounding child to keep him at home, in school and out of trouble.

Andrew was living with his grandmother and had lost touch with his absent parents. He fought verbally and physically with his older sister, and his grandmother did not know how to intervene. She was seeking placement for him outside the home in order to get him help for his behaviors. At school, Andrew was disruptive in classes, fought with peers and threatened teachers, resulting in the school taking steps toward a long-term suspension from school. He was on a diversion contact with the Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), and the Court Counselor (CC) was planning to take Andrew to court to increase the level of supervision because of his aggressive behaviors. In other words, Andrew was on the brink of being placed outside the home, and things needed to change quickly. grandmother_two

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Topics: building families, analytic process, family stories,, success stories,

MST Gives Hope to Families with Troubled Adolescents

Posted by Jessica Crowe and Lori Moore

MST's analytic process gives hope to families with troubled adolescents.

Families with adolescents who have committed crimes are often at the end of their tether and have lost all hope. The first question to their MST therapist often is “what could you possibly do that we haven’t tried?” Then they say, “And believe me, we’ve tried everything, and nothing works.” What they quickly come to learn is that MST's approach to working with families is different from anything they've tried in the past.

That's because MST is rooted in understanding the family's unique circumstances and their strengths. The therapist uses the MST Analytic Process, what we call the Do Loop to create change by slowing down to first seek understanding and then speeding up by acting and doing.


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Topics: MST, analytic process

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