March 8, 2012 | Vol. 39, No. 10

Couple offers private mental health services

The Stanton Gregor's take the term “couples counseling” to a whole new level. For spouses Lea and Jeigh Stanton Gregor mental health is a family affair, and practice.

Lea and Jeigh Stanton Gregor

True North Counseling & Consultation, LLC is the only private counseling practice available in Petersburg, the alternative being public-funded Petersburg Mental Health.

“We found a niche that people needed, a private option. It's been great. Really exciting and very well received,” said Lea, 37. She and her husband Jeigh, 35, are entering their third year in private practice.

Jeigh and Lea, who are the parents of a six-week-old baby boy, aren't the kind of couple who finishes each other's sentences, but rather they listen to what the other person in saying and then respond in turn. It's a supportive communication that works for them personally and professionally, they said.

Lea, received a master’s degree in Health and Human Development from Montana State University - Bozeman, Mont., specializes in marital concerns, parenting skills, anxiety, depression, life transitions, and grief and loss.

“Winter can be very challenging here,” she said regarding the uniqueness of offering counseling services in Petersburg. “And there are a lot of fishing families here, which is more unique to this culture.”

Jeigh has an extensive background working in wilderness therapy programs for troubled teenagers. Wilderness therapy takes teens out of their home environment and gives them skills for camping and surviving in the woods. Jeigh has a master's degree in Counseling Psychology from Prescott College, Ariz. He specializes in working with children and adolescents.

The couple met at a wilderness therapy camp. And working together as a married couple has helped their business, Jeigh said. “We have the utmost respect for each other’s talents,” he said. “It wouldn't work if we didn't believe in each other's abilities.”

For the most part, Lea and Jeigh meet with clients one-on-one, but they have worked as a team.

“We do collaborate sometimes working with families and couples,” Jeigh said. This approach has worked out well for them, he added.

This summer, Jeigh plans to make full use of his wilderness therapy skills in teaching children and teens the basics in outdoor survival in a wilderness leadership course.

“I see it as a progressive thing,” he said.

Jeigh will first be teaching the basics of what to bring on an outdoor adventure and also how to set up shelter, and a few other skills, he said. More experienced participants will be taken on longer or more complex adventures.

Jeigh works with clients who elect his services, and some who are required by the court to be in therapy. “We have a lot of clients with anxiety and depression; it's kind of a microcosm of what's happening elsewhere,” he said.

To contact Jeigh and Lea Stanton Gregor at True North Counseling & Consultation call 907-605-7292 or check out their website at

www.foundtruenorth.com.

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