I have studied and trained in order to provide a variety of clinical services for my patients. My ongoing studies augment my ability to work with patients of all ages and needs.
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Adult Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy | Adolescent Psychotherapy | Child Play Therapy | Parent Consultations | Couples Therapy
Adult Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy
Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy is an intimate partnership, in the course of which the patient becomes aware of the underlying sources of his/her difficulties not simply intellectually, but emotionally – by re-experiencing them with the analyst.
The person best able to undergo psychoanalytic psychotherapy may have already achieved important satisfactions – with friends, in marriage, in work, or through special interests and hobbies – but is nonetheless significantly impaired by longstanding symptoms: depression or anxiety, sexual incapacities, or physical symptoms without any demonstrable underlying physical cause. One person may be plagued by private rituals, compulsions or repetitive thoughts of which no one else is aware.
Another may live a constricted life of isolation and loneliness, incapable of feeling close to anyone. A victim of childhood sexual abuse might suffer from an inability to trust others. Some people come to therapy due to repeated failures in work or in love, brought about not by chance, but by self- destructive patterns of behavior. Others need therapy because the way they are – their character – substantially limits their choices and their pleasures.
Whatever the problem – and each is different – that a person brings to the therapist, it can be properly understood only within the context of that person’s strengths and life situation.
The goal of psychoanalytic psychotherapy is not so much to suppress symptoms as to understand them, and because, as their meanings become clear, symptoms tend to resolve spontaneously. Psychoanalysis requires significant commitments of time, money and emotional engagement, but leads over time to a new sense of freedom, responsibility, depth and meaningfulness in life. It provides individuals with insights into their interpersonal relationships, and patterns of relating to others.
Through the therapeutic relationship, adults in therapy gain new awareness regarding their difficulties, and build and strengthen healthy ways of coping with stress.
I work with adults on a wide variety of personal growth goals, including:
- Improving intimate relationships and family relationships
- Understanding one’s anxiety and depression
- Healing from grief, loss, and other trauma
- Coping with concerns about aging
- Improving self-esteem
- Effectively managing job stress and job loss
- Resolving struggles with sexual orientation
Due to the fact that children and adolescents are usually not self-referred for therapy, often much of the early work is focused on establishing a trusting relationship and helping the client understand the potential benefits of therapy.
Individual sessions with children and younger adolescents are frequently combined with parent or family sessions to monitor progress.
Children & adolescents who may benefit from therapy include those who:
- are anxious and fearful
- seem depressed, sad, or withdrawn
- seem unmotivated or “lazy”
- have low self-esteem
- have poor relationships with peers
- are argumentative or defiant
- exhibit disordered eating patterns
- display marked fear of places, situations, or items that are not dangerous
- seem irritable or angry
- demonstrate a lack of self-control
- are having difficulty adjusting to a new school or sibling
- need help expressing feelings related to parental conflict, divorce, or remarriage
- are grieving the loss of a loved one
Child Play Therapy
Therapists strategically utilize play therapy to help children express what is troubling them when they do not have the verbal language to express their thoughts and feelings. In play therapy, toys are the child’s words and play is the child’s language. Through play, therapists may help children learn more adaptive behaviors when there are emotional or social skills deficits.
The positive relationship that develops between therapist and child during play therapy sessions provides a safe container for the expression of intense feelings that often overwhelm a child. In this therapeutic environment, a child can learn to manage themselves better with increased understanding of themselves and their feelings.
- Become more responsible for behaviors and develop more successful coping strategies.
- Develop new and creative solutions to problems.
- Develop respect and acceptance of self and others.
- Learn to experience and appropriately express strong emotion.
- Cultivate empathy and respect for thoughts and feelings of others.
- Learn new social skills and relational skills with family.
- Develop self-efficacy and thus a better assuredness about their abilities.
Even the most troubling problems can be confronted in play therapy. Lasting resolutions can be discovered, rehearsed, mastered and adapted into lifelong strategies.
In play therapy, I help children gain a better understanding of how they view themselves, others, and the world and to learn new attitudes to replace self-defeating attitudes.
Play therapy is used in conjunction with parent and/or family sessions so that gains made in therapy can be transferred into the child’s home and school environments.
Play therapy is beneficial for:
- anxious and withdrawn children
- aggressive and acting-out children
- children with severe behavior or conduct problems
- children whose parents are divorcing, are divorced, or remarried
- children with specific fears, such as separation anxiety or school refusal
- grieving children
- children who have experienced trauma
- children with attention or impulse control difficulties
Parent Consultations are an opportunity for parents to meet with me to discuss their challenges in raising their children and teenagers, and to address their concerns. This interactive dialogue empowers parents as they gain further understanding of normal child and adolescent development. It aims to help parents reflect on their parenting styles and develop even more effective ways of helping their children grow.
When your child is having difficulties, either with “acting out” behaviors, moodiness, depression, anxiety or peer difficulties, it can help to talk with a psychologist about how you are handling the situation. Together we can devise new strategies for helping your child through difficult times. Parent guidance sessions are combined with play, individual, and/or family therapy sessions in order to maximize the benefits of treatment.
Couples therapy is a treatment designed specifically to focus on the couple’s relationship and help them improve their understanding one another. Through this understanding couples can learn to shape their relationship into the relationship they aspired to have, and develop greater appreciation and respect for their partner.
Couples therapy considers the ways couples communicate and work together and helps couples develop skills to enhance their communication. It provides an awareness of the way relationships were experienced and perceived in each partner’s family of origin, and how these relationships are re-played in the couple’s relationship.
I help couples with a wide variety of challenges, including:
- Beginning a new relationship
- Enhancing an existing relationship
- Deepening empathy and intimacy
- Handling conflict productively
- Improving communication
- Considering and planning for parenthood
- Managing intense emotions at difficult times
- Deepening support and commitment