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Improving Family Communication

Lindner Center of HOPE discusses family therapy and their expansion plans.

Lindner Center of HOPE (Helping Our Patients Excel) is a nonprofit, comprehensive mental health center motivated by the philosophy that by working together, hope can be offered to people living with mental illness. 

“Reducing stigma may be the single most important thing we can do to improve life not only for ourselves and our loved ones but also for the country as a whole,” Jennifer Wilcox, PsyD, staff psychologist at Lindner Center of HOPE tells us. “We need to talk about mental illness on par with any other physical illness."                     

Featuring one of the largest and most diverse groups of clinicians in the Midwest, their work is done collaboratively to provide a comprehensive, holistic view of patients’ needs. Additionally, they are one of the first centers designed as a fully integrated system of care. Their partnerships with UC Health and Cincinnati Children’s have helped them serve more than 53,000 patients from around the world.

“Mental illness is the nation’s #1 public health problem,” Jennifer states. She cites the Surgeon General, who proposed in 2022 that “the mental health crisis is the biggest concern facing the country because it impacts everybody and all facets of life.”  

Additionally, the World Health Organization states that one in four people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives. An estimated 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental health disorders among the leading causes of illness and disability worldwide.

“Not receiving the right treatment early enough is the biggest contributor to this problem,” Jennifer notes. 

Struggling with mental illness not only affects the individual but also the family. The patient and family are at the center of treatment offered at Lindner Center of HOPE. In addition to their inpatient, outpatient and residential services for individuals, they also provide counseling for families and couples. 

“People should seek out couples or family therapy if they feel that they are unable to function well together on a day-to-day basis, have trouble communicating effectively or engage in aggressive behaviors,” Jennifer clarifies. 

There are many reasons why a family might need counseling. 

“Some reasons that families seek counseling include problems communicating, a major change within the family (such as moving, divorce, death), one family member engaging in behavior that is affecting the other family members negatively, or to learn how to understand each other better,” Jennifer explains.     

Although it can be hard work, there are many potential benefits of family counseling.  “Family therapy allows families to improve their communication, resolve their conflict, and provides a safe place for them to express their emotions,” Jennifer tells us. 

The goal of family therapy is to draw family members closer and strengthen the bonds between them. Jennifer stresses the importance of acknowledging how the actions of one family member will affect the lives of all other family members.    

“A family is a system that needs to maintain balance and stability,” explains Jennifer. 

“Each person needs to continuously adapt to maintain stability. Family therapy can help to reestablish this balance by improving communication and providing a voice for each family member,” Jennifer says.                                   

The Lindner Center of HOPE is also doing a bit of adapting themselves, as they’ve begun preparing big expansion plans. They recently acquired approximately 18 acres of land adjacent to the north of their current property. The land is intended to accommodate the Center’s future growth needs, which includes an expansion of the treatment capacity, a new Wellness Center and a state-of-the-science Assessment Center. The acquisition is the latest update to the Center’s $30 million development campaign launched in May 2022. The campaign has received a total of $18 million in gifts and pledges to date. They hope to finalize their plans by the fall of 2023. 

“The campaign will help establish a dedicated fund to build and retain the clinical team,” Jennifer explains. 

Hopefully, it will help ensure their ability to provide high-quality mental health care and mental wellness services to the community for many years to come.

Contact The Lindner Center of HOPE at 513.536.HOPE or visit, LindnerCenterOfHope.org.

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