By Ron VandenBoom
You walk into the ranch-style home and into a large comfortable living room, but you notice immediately that this is no ordinary living room.
In one corner stand shelves with small toys and knickknacks and in another corner stands a machine that looks like a camera tripod with a row of lights mounted on the top.
This is, in fact, a workroom. Not just a workroom, but a place of healing. It is a room belonging to licensed therapists William and Diane Boley, owners of Boleys Counseling Service.
The Boleys are both licensed counselors who do mental health counseling, marriage and family counseling, and trauma counseling to name but a few of their talents.
We see children and couples and families, William Boley said. We see a lot of family disorders and kids that have behavioral problems and people that are recovering from treatment. We also work a lot in trauma.
Diane Boley just recently received her license to practice in Montana and joined her husband.
It is really a confirmation of nine years of work to do that, said Boley, himself a 10-year veteran as a counselor. Its really a long, difficult struggle to get to that point.
Flexibility is what the Boleys see as one of their greatest assets now that Diane has joined the business.
A person doesnt always mate with a particular therapist, he said. Some people want to see a woman and some people want to see a man. Some families want to see a couple, so it gives us a lot of flexibility. It makes for a stronger organization.
Diane Boley agrees with her husbands appraisal of what she brings to the practice, but also emphasizes what she considers to be a strength.
She has worked with children and the elderly before, while studying for her license and has noticed an ability to establish a quick understanding or connection with these two groups.
The Boleys use several types of therapy in their practice, but the one that most interests them currently is call Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing or EMDR.
EMDR is a fairly new treatment that can lead to a resolution of trauma, William Boley said.
It facilitates a relearning process and it allows resolution of deep-seated trauma, he said. So while we use eye movement, its much more than that.
It activates both sides of the brain at the same time the logical part and the creative part, Diane Boley said. It gets the emotions involved and it gets the physical part of the person involved ... and the problem gets resolved.
Its the only single therapy I know of that really brings resolution, William Boley added.
The Boleys also see advantages to working out of their home.
It offers a serenity and confidentiality you wont find on the street, he said.
Diane Boley agrees that not working out of a downtown office presents a positive therapeutic atmosphere.
This does not look like an office, she said. It feels like a lived-in home, and when people come in and sit down, they dont feel like theyre in a sterile unit; they feel like theyre in a home.
Preserving mental health is something William Boley said he believes was, at one time, always accomplished in the home.
In a lot of ways we do what grandfather and grandmother used to do, he said. When you had a problem you went to the old, wise part of the family and for the most part that isnt available anymore.
Ask how they know when they have succeeded in helping someone resolve a personal conflict and Boley will defer to the clients own words.
When I see an adult I ask them what they want to accomplish and I also ask them how they would know if they reached that objective, he said. What would have to change before they really thought that they have reached that objective.
The Boleys agree that it is a satisfying moment when one of their clients reaches their objective and can once again seek life anew.
For more information on the Boleys Counseling Service call 265-6602.