Meet Youth Therapist Tyra Vickers, PhD
I’ve loved being around kids since I was a kid myself. Children provide such a fresh perspective on the world. They often boil complex topics down to their most basic roots. I appreciate their simple insights that are often humorous and lighthearted. I sometimes wonder if children see the world more clearly than adults.
I always knew I was destined to work with kids, but I took a unique path to get there. I grew up outside of Chicago and headed to St. Louis Missouri to study pre-med. However, I realized that I needed sleep more than I needed med school, so switched to a major that allowed me to have a healthier work-life balance: psychology.
In college, I took a part-time job as an ABA therapist, which introduced me to the many challenges and rewards of working with children with autism. I was so impressed by the strength of those kids and their families, who persevered despite the obstacles. Working with this population is dear to my heart and remains one of my main therapy focuses.
In 2005, I moved to Colorado to pursue my doctorate in school psychology at the University of Denver. Today in my private practice, I specialize in working with children and teens with autism, anxiety and grief and loss. And, I provide parenting support services to parents who are struggling, have questions or need extra support due to a variety of concerns and circumstances.
I understand, on a deep level, the stresses that many children, parents and families face.
I grew up with an older sister with special needs, so I know what it’s like to navigate the medical system and the resources available. I personally encountered anxiety and grief and loss throughout my adolescence. In all my experience, both personal and professional, I know that it’s not only possible for kids, teens and parents to heal, but to come out on the other side stronger than ever before.
Whether I’m at work or enjoying free time, I value self-care and personal growth, as my own journey has taken me from grief and loss to balance and peace. I find retreating to nature the best form of rejuvenation, especially hiking and camping with my husband and dog. I also meditate daily and love cooking, volunteering, going to Rockies games and sampling craft beer at one of our many fine Colorado breweries.
I tend to give my all to everything I do. Sometimes I take myself too seriously, and that’s another reason I enjoy working with kids. They make me laugh and bring me back down to earth.
Although I value hard work, I am extremely personable, grounded and optimistic. I have an empathic nature that children are naturally attracted to. No matter your age, it’s important to find humor and possibility in less-than-desirable situations. It’s important to take stock of your true values and move forward empowered as your authentic self.
Tyra Vickers is a licensed psychologist in the State of Colorado, License #5163. She holds a Ph.D. in child, family and school psychology, and an education specialist (Ed.S.) degree from the University of Denver. She has served as a school psychologist with Cherry Creek Schools for ten years. In her private practice she specializes in working with children and adolescents with autism, as well as those struggling with anxiety, grief and loss. She also provides parenting support, providing individualized advice to parents at every stage.