Dr. Christina Donaldson is a psychologist and a dancer. For over 15 years, Dr. Donaldson has focused her specialized skill set with adolescents in a myriad of settings, including: wilderness therapy, educational programs, eating disorder treatment centers, psychiatric hospitals, and in community counseling centers. A dancer since the age of three, Dr. Donaldson is a Psychologist specializing in adolescent mental health offering a unique perspective on dance and music as it relates to adolescent behavior. Since earning her Ph.D. from Pacifica Graduate University, Christina has developed and piloted an in-depth study on the relationship between music and psychology. In her research, Christina is unveiling the importance music plays on connection both to one’s inner world as well as to each other. In addition to research, Christina serves as a guest lecturer at various Universities and Community Colleges. Her presentations focus on how eating disorders develop, the impact culture has on eating disorders, and different treatment options available. Along with a passion for music and dance, she has applied her talents towards mythology and storytelling, which she utilizes in consulting with screenwriters on character and plot development. She earned a B.S. in Microbiology from University of Minnesota, and did her graduate work at Pacifica Graduate Institute where she received a M.A. in Counseling Psychology and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology.
I am committed to facilitating the mental, physical, and emotional development of children and I believe that YPAD is an organization implementing effective programs that are in-sync with my goals and aspirations. YPAD promotes a premise that I share; Let children be children and let children act like children.
Being a child comes with wonderful opportunities of the imagination, which is a crucial part in the developmental process. Imagination allows children to creatively overcome conflicts that occur throughout life. It helps emotional and mental development while at the same time builds creative confidence. When adults require young kids to dance out adult sexual themes, this interferes with the child’s important developmental process. The child is seeking positive affirmation from the adult or audience members and when they get it, the child associates the suggestive moves with the praise. This association can damage their sexual development as well as create internal confusion leading to mental health problems. It is vital for adults to set appropriate limits to preserve the innate process of development and allow children to grow at their own innate pace.