New Book! Challenging the Fantasy Bond

This much-anticipated follow-up to the critically-acclaimed and bestselling The Fantasy Bond tackles the complex question of why so many of us are compelled to repeat the pain of our past while avoiding positive experiences that could enrich our lives.


Addressing the Need for Effective Crisis Response and Treatments for Suicide: Childrens Institute in Los Angeles

Dr. Lisa Firestone has been invited to conduct online workshops on Effective Crisis Response and Treatments for Suicide since the pandemic. These 6-hour workshops provide licensed mental health professionals with the required 6 hour continuing education units and training required for license renewal.  Childrens Institute (CII) in Los Angeles is an agency that has invited Dr. Firestone to provide this training on several occasions.


At Childrens Institute (CI) throughout the last few years, there has been an increase in referrals for situations that involve suicidality amongst children, youth, and families. In response, CI made the decision to provide a focused training on suicide for their staff.


The data shows that suicidality among our youth continues to rise. The increase in numbers means that anyone working with children and youth will be exposed to suicide at some point in their careers. We knew that information and training such as this, help staff be better equipped to respond to children, youth, and families in crisis.


Anyone working in community mental health or working in our schools could benefit with such a training.  We now plan to provide this type of training on a yearly basis.


Here are some comments from our staff that attended the training

  • It was so helpful to go through the safety planning step-by-step
  • This training helped me be better equipped to assist clients in this area by such a knowledgeable trainer.
  • I particularly appreciated the statistics and they were applied to the population. Also risk factors and how to identify them.
  • I enjoyed the presenter providing real examples of how to use the skills being taught.
  • I appreciated that the trainer was extremely knowledgeable and provided an informative and engaging training with video examples that supported the training elements.


Childrens Institute (CII) was founded in 1906 by Minnie Barton to provide shelter to women.

To this day, women continue to play a powerful role at CII. CII has grown to expand the reach within the communities we serve with innovative programs and services. Children’s Institute’s (CII) two generational approach strengthens individual, family, and community capacity for healing, wellness, and success. CII has four main campuses serving the Los Angeles communities:

Otis Booth, Watts Campus, Long Beach Center, and Figueroa Center.


To learn more about Childrens Institute visit               

Ingrid E. Mürrle, LMFT
Senior Clinical Specialist

Childrens Institute


If you’re interested in booking a training with Dr. Firestone, contact Jina Carvalho at


Online Course:

If you’re interested in learning more from Dr. Lisa Firestone on Suicide: Effective Risk Assessment and Intervention click here.



Crisis in Children’s Mental Health

Since March 2020, we have all been trying to stay safe and healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic. One unexpected outcome of the pandemic has been the devastating impact on the mental health of children, exacerbating the children’s mental health crisis.  While many experts suggest that youth were already facing a mental health crisis prior to the pandemic, data from the Centers for Disease Control suggest that the emergency department visits for a mental health concern increased for children ages 5-11 (by 24%) and adolescents ages 12-15 (by 31%).  In addition, data collected through a Kaiser Family Foundation poll showed that parents reported that their children’s mental health is currently worse than prior to the pandemic.


When we examine the mental health crisis among Black youth specifically the suicide rates among Black youth have continued to increase faster than other racial and ethnic groups in the U.S. In addition, many facilities that target child and adolescent mental health reported being significantly understaffed, wait times for services increased, and there is a lack in diversity of mental health providers to address the unique mental health needs of diverse youth. Collectively, this led to the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Children’s Hospital Association declaring a national state of emergency on child and adolescent mental health in October 2021. 


We know that Black youth disproportionally face additional stressors that negatively impact mental health including racism and health inequalities and disparities.  While Black Mental Wellness does not provide direct clinical care, we provide trainings for a range of individuals involved in the care and development of youth, specifically, mental health professionals, school systems/school staff, national youth mentorship programs, non-profit organizations, and colleges/universities. Further, we create and implement programming to directly educate various populations about child and adolescent mental health, provide trainings on cultural sensitivity when assessing and treating youth, and in work directly with youth. We also actively work with youth in-person and in virtual spaces to learn initial ways to identify their feelings and engage in healthy coping strategies.



Upcoming Webinar

We invite you to join us on our webinar “Strategies for Increasing Diversity and Supporting Students in the Mental Health Field” on July 11, 2022




About Black Mental Wellness

Black Mental Wellness is a corporation of licensed Clinical Psychologists who are passionate about addressing mental health and wellness concerns specific to the Black community.


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Join Dr. Lisa Firestone for an in-depth dive into all patterns of attachment.


Strategies for Discussing Race, Racial Discrimination, & Racial Trauma with Youth

Join us for a free webinar with Drs. Nicole Cammack and Danielle Busby from Black Mental Wellness.


Free New Series: Experts at Home

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New Podcast: Why Do We Respond the Way We Do to a Pandemic?

Listen to anxiety specialist Dr. Daniel Zamir discuss caring for our mental health during a pandemic.


Watch a Free Webinar on Coping With Loneliness

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Dr. Lisa Firestone Honored with Legacy Award

Congratulations to Dr. Firestone for winning the Legacy Award for Scholarship from the Santa Barbara County Psychological Association!