Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.
Anger Management Psychologist
Licensed as a psychologist in the state of California; Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. earned a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the California Graduate Institute and a Master’s Degree in Child and Adolescent Psychology from the University of Wales, Great Britain. Interestingly, her doctoral dissertation examined the unique issues surrounding how issues of attachment and dependency ultimately influence the decisions single women make regarding those with whom they choose to form intimate relationships.
At her busy Los Angeles office, Dr. Raymond utilizes her knowledge and expertise to teach angry people to use anger-based energy as fuel; fuel which can propel them away from an unhealthy emotional state fraught with destructive repercussions into a new dimension characterized by self-empowerment and a sense of well-being.
Specializing in the emotion of anger and its many facets is an interesting career choice. What prompted you to go in that direction?
It started with kids. As a kid I felt invisible and that I had to work hard and be good to get into the world of adults. I felt like a martyr and so much more like a care taker than a kid. So I began my working life with kids. I was their champion, because I saw with my inner eye, my intuition and my own experience – it gave me the empathy that made me their spokesperson.
What was that like?
I saw so many sad and angry kids when I first started work as a child psychologist in Wales, UK. They were acting out in school and home, and it was through my seeing their longing for a sign that they mattered, that they were worth-while and that they deserved care that these kids got a voice. Telling the adults – the teachers and the parents, about the sadness and unmet needs of these kids made me feel like I was giving them a place in the hearts of those adults who had dismissed them. I also wanted to open the hearts of the adults who just wanted the kids to be quiet and good and robotic, like I had been.
You must have felt rewarded…
The tribute I received when I left a particular job of reporting on damaged adolescent girls, locked up for bad behavior – said it all – the staff thanked me for helping them understand the girls in a way that made them seem human and that allowed them to get the attention they needed.
I had used my intelligence to do well at school and develop an academic path that these kids had little chance of doing. I escaped from my sadness into feeling good about being a psychologist. I filled my life with the job. I wrote 2 books for teachers on how to help special needs kids in school. The persona was my savior until it failed me later in life.
When I got exhausted and couldn’t work so hard for those kids anymore, I realized I had to do something else that had been missing in my life. I had a ton of disturbing dreams and my personal life wasn’t working. I kept a dream journal that recorded my pain and how wasted I felt. I wanted help to understand what was going on in my life – I was a successful and respected professional, but in my personal life I was a helpless and scared infant.
How did you recover from those feelings?
I couldn’t find anyone to help me in the way that I needed. I wanted help with my dreams and my anxiety, and my hopelessness about finding an available partner despite my attractiveness, station in life and good cooking skills. I figured out that I had to become what I myself needed, so that others like me had someone who could know and understand them inside out. I began to do work therapy for adults who were messed up in their relationships, anxious and depressed. It was like I saw the grown up kid still having terrible angst from their unresolved childhood issues.
Coming up to the age of 40 I decided to join my broken family in the USA and landed in Los Angeles. After taking care of my mother until she died of cancer, I finally reached a point where I knew I needed to go back to school and train to be a clinical psychologist working with adults. I worked 3 jobs to put myself through school and internship, loving the work as I used my special gift of being able to understand the pain and suffering, anger and fear of my clients.
Can you describe what it was like to go back to school?
My educational journey started with a desire to find a basis for understanding human behavior. I began with a BA in Psychology. After that I married my interest in working with kids and teaching by doing a 4 year M.Ed in Educational/Child Psychology which involved teaching all ages and learning about family dysfunction.
If you were asked to define the word “therapist” what would you say?
Being a therapist means giving of yourself. It is a very personal and intimate experience, being a parent, teacher, friend, sounding board and reality check for clients – often all in a single hour. It isn’t just mopping up someone’s mess or absorbing their whining. It is about processing their angst and helping them digest it in ways that allow them to feel cared for in ways that are consistent, reliable and trustworthy – a re-parenting experience, while not gratifying them just to get their money!
What one thing do you hope to have accomplished by the end of your career?
I’d love to publish a book on how I have helped clients grow and love themselves through the work we did using their dreams. I also want to write a book on how psychosomatic complaints are related to relationship dissatisfaction.