Help with life’s transitions

By |2005-09-28T09:00:00-04:00September 28th, 2005|Uncategorized|

ANN ARBOR – Birth. Death. Aging. Career change. Marriage. Transitions – whether joyous or sad, are among the most stressful experiences people face. Nor are we taught in school how to move through these changes while still carrying on with our lives – and when you’re in the middle of one of these transitions, there is usually little time or energy to read the latest self-help book. However, help is available. Life Cycles, a service in Ann Arbor, offers ceremonies for all life’s passages, workshops and personal consultations to help people create a bridge during transitions from one phase of life to the next.
Life Cycles was founded by Mary Stevens, a professional social worker for over twenty-five years. After spending much of her professional life working one-on- one with trauma survivors, Stevens decided that she wanted to participate in clients’ joyous life events as well. That desire resulted in Life Cycles, which offers workshops on life transitions ranging from the birth of a new child to the death of a family member, as well as marriage and commitment ceremonies. Stevens said that she looks forward to the day when she will be able to perform legal marriages, not just commitment ceremonies, for same-sex couples. “I feel very committed to gays and lesbians in terms of them having their rightful place in this world,” said Stevens, who has worked with many lesbians in her private practice. The marriage and commitment ceremonies Life Cycles offers are personalized for each couple.
In addition to performing the ceremony, Stevens’ agency is there to help couples prepare to commit to each other. Life Cycles offers a Partners Compatibility Inventory to help couples identify the strengths and potential problem areas in their relationship. They may then decide to continue with premarital counseling or choose from workshops ranging from Communication Skills and Conflict Management to Financial Issues and Intimacy: Emotional and Physical. Other Life Cycles workshops include “Oh My Gosh, We’re Having a Baby,” Grandparenting Workshops, Personal Mission Statement: “Creating Your Personal Guiding Light,” and “Our Families, Our Holidays, Ourselves.” Workshops on child rearing and dealing with other life changes are in progress.
“The goal of my work with people going through just about any life change, happy or unhappy, is to help them move forward with the positive things about whatever that event is, and to be able to let go of the not-so-positive ones,” Stevens said.
Life Cycles is located at 1110 Henry Street in Ann Arbor. For more information about workshops, marriage ceremonies, or the other services offered by Life Cycles, call 734 794 9989, email [email protected] or visit

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Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.