Healing from anything has its ugliness and often leaves many scars. But even in all the ugliness and scars, there is beauty to be seen. Just ask Nneka J. Owens, Licensed Professional Counselor and Mother-Daughter Coach specializing in individual, couples, and family therapy, and creator of Behind the 90 docuseries. Nneka’s therapeutic approach incorporates is an interactive, solution-focused, cognitive behavior and family systems approach, with a goal to provide support and practical feedback to help everyone effectively address life’s challenges. We all have them (big and small). This is why it is important to find beauty in every experience we have.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Nneka to get the inspiration behind not just the first episode in the Behind the 90 docuseries, but the decision to create the series. Her reason and energy will help you understand why there is beauty in the ashes of our experiences.
Dr. G.: It is such a pleasure to be speaking with you and I love everything you are doing. What inspired you to create the documentary?
Nneka: As a mental health professional, I come across many compelling stories, and in 2017, I met a woman who had been wounded by her mother. Session after session she shared details of all the abusive words that were uttered from her mother’s lips, and the refusal to protect her from sexual abuse… had I heard such stories in my 16 years as a mental health professional? The answer is NO.. from there I heard countless stories of Daughters of all races and ages share similar stories.
I ask myself why I am getting these stories? and why didn’t I know so many daughters were suffering at the hands of their mothers. As a woman of faith, I knew there was something God was calling me to do. Share stories people are willing and wanting to share in an effort to raise awareness and give them a voice. Silent no more!
Dr. G.: How did you come up with the title because it is an absolutely beautiful depiction of healing?
Nneka: These stories are not meant to paint the picture of the evil mother, but rather help wounded daughters in the healing process; while coming to understand that in some cases what their grandmothers and mothers suffered can be imprinted on them. Beauty from Ashes: The Journey of Three Daughters (formerly Birth of a Butterfly) was inspired by scripture Isaiah 61:3.. rising from destruction…finding good through the pain.
Nneka: My hope is that our viewers will come to explore the broader impact of mother-daughter relationships on families and generations.
Dr. G.: Why specifically are mother-daughter relationships so important for child development?
Nneka: Mother’s set the tone for all relationships, it’s through these relationships trust is built, and we develop a sense of self-worth.
This documentary is a series. What is coming next how do you decide (or select) the people you want to be in it? I’ve always been intrigued by one’s story. I was that kid that was very curious about the when why how and that has not changed. Everyone has a story to tell, and I love learning from others. The selection process in most cases are those topics we shy away from, however need to be discussed to improve our quality of life. We can’t change what we don’t acknowledge.
Dr. G.: What else do you have going on?
Nneka: I’m in private practice as a mental health professional a wife and a mother of three. I have a daughter, so I’m always trying to be the mother she needs.
Dr. G.: How can people connect, support, and contribute to the things you have going on?
Nneka: If people would like to support or follow the progress of projects they can visit my websites: behindthe90withnneka.com/owenstherapy.com or follow me on
Facebook at Nneka J. Owens and on Instagram @njocounseling.group.
Dr. G.: I am looking forward to seeing the documentary and all the others to follow. May you continue to have much success!
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Professional Speaker, Media Journalist, and Author, Dr. Pamela Gurley is the founder and CEO of Clark and Hill Enterprise, LLC (www.clarkandhillenterprise.com) and IAmDrPGurley, LLC (www.iamdrpgurley.com); founder/creator of merchandise brand un@pologeticbyDrG, Author of "I Am Not a Stereotype: I Am H.E.R. Adjunct Graduate School Professor, Founder/Host of Herspiration Happy Hour podcast and Vlog Series Un@pologetic w/ Dr. G; Co-Host and Media Journalist for Urban.ish Digital, and Contributing Writer for Medium, empoWEr Magazine, & Hustle & Soul Magazine. Dr. Pam has been featured in Forbes and Hype Magazine; as well as, on Good Morning Washington (abcDC7), Good Day Atlanta (Fox5Atl), The Quiet Storm w/ Lenny Green, The Book of Sean (FoxSoul), Hot914 Radio, Urban.ish Radio, and many other media outlets. She is a retired United States Army Veteran and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Saint Leo University; a Master’s in Health Service Administration from Central Michigan University; and a Doctorate in Management with a concentration in Organizational Development and Change from Colorado Technical University.