‘I came for diapers, and left with hope’

| July 16, 2014 | 0 Comments

Women seeing success with life coaching at pregnancy resource centers

Kristin Wermus, right, a master-certified life coach and client services director, visits with Aleesha Warner and her 2-week-old son Jayden at Pregnancy Choices in Apple Valley July 9. Dianne Towalski / The Catholic Spirit.

Kristin Wermus, right, a master-certified life coach and client services director, visits with Aleesha Warner and her 2-week-old son Jayden at Pregnancy Choices in Apple Valley July 9. Dianne Towalski / The Catholic Spirit.

Difficult living situations, an unplanned pregnancy, unstable finances. These issues are what lead women and families to pregnancy resource centers, which provide everything from ultrasounds to diapers. But at a few local centers, women are finding more — they are finding hope.

Pregnancy Choices in Apple Valley has added life coaching to its services. The unique approach assists pregnant women in difficult situations.

Aleesha Warner is a single mom of an 11-year-old and a newborn. She has found the life coaching sessions to be life-changing.

“You can need help for all kinds of material things,” Warner said. “And you can go to the county and ask for things. They encourage you to live independently, but no one is helping you or helping you try to change that. So, five years later, you are back in the same boat.”

Life coaching is different. By working with Kristin Wermus, a master-certified life coach and client services director at Pregnancy Choices, Warner and others like her have learned to recognize their own values that help them achieve their goals — one day at a time.

“They are creating hope for themselves, and we are there listening while they are pulling out all of these great things about themselves that they didn’t even know were there,” Wermus said. “We just provide the feedback. People are very quick to tell you what to do. Here, it is nonjudgmental; we are not pointing fingers or even pointing out the direction.”

Wermus explained that clients set goals based on what they value, not what the coach values.

For instance, Warner seeks a career that she enjoys to set an example for her children. She wants to be financially stable and own her own home, all while being the best parent she can be.

The life coaching experience benefits more than the child these women carry as they improve their situations and look to a future for themselves and their family.

Deanna (who requests that her last name not be used) is one such client.

Deanna was in an unsafe relationship, but was financially dependent. When she found out she was pregnant, she didn’t know what to do. A neighbor suggested she visit Pregnancy Choices, which has provided services to pregnant women since 2008.

“At the time, I wasn’t in need of material things,” Deanna said.

What she needed was a plan.

“Through the life coaching, I was able to uncover in my life something that I was trying to keep to myself; I broke down,” she said.

Learn more about life coachingPregnancy Choices, Apple Valley
Contact Kristin Wermus, client services director, at (952) 997-2229 or info@mypregnancychoices.comPregnancy Options, Faribault
Contact Anna Blessing, executive director, at (507) 332-7644
Website: http://www.polifecare.com

As Deanna continued with Pregnancy Choices, she began to find solutions. She moved into a shelter and started on a new path.

“It was up to Deanna to come to this on her own,” Wermus said. “She realized that her relationship was not honoring her values, and that realization propelled her to take action and leave. Life coaching is about holding our clients accountable to what they say they want. Therein lies the power.”

“I came for diapers, and left with hope,” Deanna added.

Although her child, Kyro, was born last year, Deanna continues to visit Pregnancy Choices for different resources.

“I feel like I get to know myself,” Deanna said. “I thought I knew how to guide myself through life, but the life coaching skills have given me the keys.”

The life coaching sessions help clients like Deanna and Warner learn to take one step at a time in order to achieve bigger goals.

“I used to run into an obstacle in my life and see it as a problem, and I would just get stuck,” Warner said. “I am having car problems right now, and that is a big problem. Through the life coaching, I am able to see this more as just an inconvenience, and I am able to find my way through it. It can become an opportunity for me instead of a problem.”

Pregnancy Options in Faribault also provides life coaching. Executive Director Anna Blessing said more clients are using the center and are seeing results similar to Apple Valley’s Pregnancy Choices.

An added bonus to clients’ success is the change Blessing has seen with her staff. Since receiving special training, staff members don’t feel as burned out after a session with a client.

“The whole atmosphere at the center is different,” Blessing said.

Life coaching techniques are integrated into everything staff members do, and the results are evident.

The nonjudgmental approach through life coaching is proving to be a game changer for pregnancy centers.

“There is something way bigger going on here than just what’s being done in this building,” Warner said.

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