Jennifer Gardner, LCSW
Jennifer has almost 20 years experience working with struggling children and families. Jennifer began her career as a therapeutic teacher, which evolved into a training and consultant role for many institutions in the Houston area. Jennifer has spent the early half of her career in classrooms and homes helping parents, and their children who have behavior struggles. Jennifer continues to have a niche for working with parents using a model that focuses on trans-generation patterns to understand what is being enacted in the attachment, and works to frame this understanding in ways that are practical and applicable to daily life. Jennifer has a deep understanding of children’s social-emotional development and helps parents gain the insight needed to address behaviors in an attuned way. She often works in collaboration with other providers who may be seeing their children.
After graduating with Clinical Social Work Degree from the University of Houston, she completed a Clinical Fellowship program at the Menninger Clinic where she also accepted a faculty position. During this time she gained specialized training in Mentalization Based Therapy, as well completing her training to become a certified Daring Way facilitator. She currently works with adults and families on an inpatient and outpatient basis. Areas of strength and interest are in working with individuals who have significant disruptions in the development of the self and who may struggle with enmeshment/codependency, or a who have been diagnosed with a personality disorder such as Borderline, Narcissistic, Avoidant or Dependent. She also specializes in family of origin issues and attachment trauma.
Lastly, Jennifer enjoys giving talks and has presented many times over the years throughout the Houston to various institutions on a variety of topics pertaining to children’s mental health, family systems, development of the self, and existential dilemmas in human nature.
Jennifer operates from a psychodynamic and object relations model with a strong humanistic approach to understanding the person seeking treatment. Her philosophy is one that aims to create connection through understanding and safety within the parameters of a secure therapeutic relationship.