Dr Kennon Rider

Dr Kennon Rider (Ph.D, CFLE)

AH Counsellor – Marriage and Family Therapist


Most adults in the world fall into one of the following categories: they were married at one time, they are currently married or they expect to be married in the future. Such is the strong appeal of being close to another human being. Despite its universal appeal marriage or relationship in general is not easy. Each person comes with his or her own set of expectations about many things including roles, rules, behaviors, emotions, values, and attitudes. And, despite the very best efforts of the individuals (in Western societies) or the family (in Eastern societies) to choose partners that will be best suited to each other for a lifetime, it remains very difficult to get right. In that sense relationship will always be about adjusting, accommodating, negotiating, and trying to find ways to be together in the most desirable way. For some fortunate ones this may seem an easy task; for many others however, it is a struggle.

I’ve spent my thirty-five year career as both a therapist and educator working for better relationships. My approach is from a systems perspective. That means that I try to see problems through a wide lens. Each person in a relationship is part of a couples system, an extended family system and a culture system in addition to work systems, friendship systems, school systems and more. Inside these systems, people often get stuck in patterns of behavior that are not working for them. I see my role as helping people get un-stuck. For me, relationship problems are usually less about personalities, and more about behaviors. Therefore, my work is often educational, teaching relationship skills and shaping changes using evidence-based methods.

I see individuals who have relationship concerns, couples and families who need help with a variety of issues including:

Conflict and Anger
Extended Family
Rules and Roles
Transitions and Change
Intimacy Issues
Cross-cultural relationships
Long-distance relationships
High Stress work environments

I am a licensed Couples and Family Therapist licensed in Texas, U.S.A (inactive status) and in the UAE (Dubai Healthcare Regulatory Authority). Trained in the United States, I received both my Master of Science Degree (MS in Family Relations) and his Doctorate (Ph.D.in Human Development and Family Studies with specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy) from Texas Tech University, College of Human Sciences. For thirty-five years I have been actively working toward strengthening marriages and families through therapy and education. In addition to my therapy work, as a University Professor at Texas Tech University, California State University – Fresno, Michigan State University Dubai, and at Zayed University in Dubai my teaching has included such courses as Children and Families in Crisis, Family Relations, Lifespan Human Development, Parenting, Child Development, Family Resource Management, Interpersonal Skills as well as Human Sexuality.

As a Certified Family Life Educator (sanctioned by the National Council of Family Relations in the U.S.) I engage in seminar and workshop training for issues such as grief and loss, crisis management, depression, anxiety, communication, stress and anger management, conflict resolution, and other marital and family issues. I train and supervise other professional psychotherapists in couples’ treatment methods.

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