Who I Work With

Kids and Teens

Image of young girl and boy on a lawn
  • support in overcoming social and performance anxiety, school anxiety, strengthening interpersonal relationships, and developing self-esteem and confidence with self-expression.
  • Support in overcoming depression
  • support for kids and teens suffering from past trauma, working through issues around divorce, adoption separation and attachment, transitions in moving or immigration.
  • anxiety and low confidence due to learning disabilities
  • support for kids who have a sibling with special needs
  • Support for the parents or family of the child

Children naturally express themselves through play and stories. They might tell you an embellished story of what happened to them that day. They might tell nothing at all but act out their favorite characters in imaginary play with friends. They may not play with their friends at all, but have internal monologues with an imaginary playmate or act out stories with toys or a stuffed animal. And many kids and teens spend lots of time watching their favorite characters in movies or TV shows and identifying with characters in books.

When children have trouble in their emotional or social worlds, it’s true – they don’t always want to talk about it. But they still need help! Drama therapy, which involves making up stories and acting them out or physicalizing them in some way, meets children where they feel most comfortable. What’s great is that their stories are transparent. A drama therapy practitioner can learn so much about a child’s psychological state through the characters they choose to enact. Children enjoy talking about these stories, which allows them to process their feelings, come to grips with traumatic experiences in their lives, re-frame their past experiences, and see their lives from different perspectives. Through drama therapy, children eventually expand the roles they play in the therapeutic session, which then extends to playing more roles in their real lives. So the “victim” might find their “hero self,” the “trouble maker” might find their “peaceful leader.” Children can eventually “act out” wise, empowering character voices within themselves, which help counteract the negative messages.

College Students and Young Adults

  • self-doubt and conflict about identity and future goals
  • suffering from social or performance anxiety
  • trouble with interpersonal relationships, feelings of loneliness
  • difficulty with confidence or motivation – networking, job search, applying to grad and professional programs
  • suffering from anxiety or depression and overcoming trauma

Creative arts therapies allow us to get at very deep levels of healing. Drama therapy, in particular, allows for more creativity, joy and spontaneity in our lives. When we are suffering from anxiety and depression or we are stuck in memories of a recent or past trauma, our energy can get deflated. We can feel worn, stuck, depressed, worried and anxious and we can’t move forward and find new ways of being in the world. Through the active methods of drama therapy, we can move past our stuck ways, obsessive or destructive thoughts, reliving past memories over and over, and overwhelming emotions. We can stop feeling trapped as we release emotions and play out healthier ways of coping. Ultimately, the validation and expression we gain from dramatic expression allows for more ability to live our lives vibrantly, confidently, and with peace and wisdom.


  • Adapting to life transitions
  • improving interpersonal relationships – marital, parenting, family, work, social
  • Overcoming postpartum depression and anxiety
  • Overcoming social anxiety
  • Exploring identity and personal choices as a mother
  • Defining purpose and life goals
  • finding your voice and confidence


Nadine is also available to schools, organizations, and private clients for small groups and individual consultations in drama therapy and therapeutic theater. Please contact Nadine at ndf3@cornell.edu for more information or to book a workshop.