Jera Nelson Cunningham, Ph.D.


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Uses the Enneagram and Attachment theory to help parents improve their self-awareness so they can develop more secure attachment with their children (and other significant relationships).

Hello there! I am Dr. Jera Nelson Cunningham and I have had over 20 years of clinical experience as a Clinical Psychologist that has primarily focused on children and families (and couples). My training and expertise is in family systems and parenting. My areas of specialty are attachment and trauma. In my clinical practice, I use an attachment-based parenting model to help parents, many of whom are adoptive or foster parents, to understand and meets their children’s underlying needs, especially when trauma has impacted the way children view the world and caregivers.

My Enneagram coaching business, Secure Pathways, is a way to incorporate a faith-based perspective with my love of families and supporting parents through the challenges of raising children in today’s culture. The first step is for parents to become more self-aware by using prayer, scripture, and the Enneagram. The next step is to explore attachment and how parents’ Enneagram types impact the way they interact with their children. Whether you are interested in learning more about yourself and developing a closer relationship with God and with others or want to take that self-awareness a step further to improve your relationship with your children using an attachment-based approach, I would love to work with you!

Please check out my coaching website:

I have been married to my husband for more than 20 years and we have two teenage boys. When I am not watching lacrosse games or attending my children’s other events, I enjoy photography, reading books on my porch swing, taking walks, wine tasting with my husband, and planning our next vacation.



“I was stuck. It felt like I was drowning in challenges related to relationships, roles, and general life situations. This was uncharted territory for me and I didn’t know how to get things back on track.

Jera helped to break down the internal and external dynamics by exploring how my enneagram type filters my understanding of reality. She helped me to recognize that in my state of depletion, I was not able to offer my best to myself, God, or those I love.

During each session we spent time sifting and sorting through different elements, using the enneagram as a framework. Jera offered practical and helpful suggestions for action and insightful questions that prompted me to consider things in a constructive way. She gently challenged the unhelpful, unrealistic, and false ideas that contributed to my feeling stuck, and offered consistent and truthful reminders of who God created me to be.

Working with Jera has been a gift! This investment has led to new awareness, a sense of peace, and is resulting in more satisfying experiences and relationships.”

-Emilie, Type 6, Mom, Wife, and Community Volunteer

Couple, Group
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday


Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology
Virginia Commonwealth University
M.A. in Clinical and Counseling Psychology
Southern Methodist University
B.A. Honors in Psychology
Wake Forest University
Licensed Clinical Psychologist
Certified Circle of Security (R) Parenting Facilitator
Certified Enneagram Coach