Common Reasons to Seek Therapy: Loss of a Loved One, Divorce, Cyber-Infidelity, Marital Dissatisfaction
Premarital Counseling, Anxiety, Depression, Substance Abuse,
Pornography Compulsion, Recent Trauma, Childhood Abuse
People often resist seeking counseling because they believe their problems are "not that serious." Some people are ashamed to discuss their behavior or thoughts, while others have sought help and found that therapy did not bring the relief they were hoping for. Finally, some people know they need help but lack insurance and worry that the cost of treatment is too pricey. Please feel free to share your concerns over the phone when you call for an appointment.
The truth is, Dr. Sapolsky said, "we're lousy at recognizing when our normal coping mechanisms aren't working. Our response is usually to do it five times more, instead of thinking, maybe it's time to try something new."
Who Seeks Counseling? People seek therapy for the following reasons: personal growth, problem behavior, or relational conflict. And, sometimes we find ourselves needing to share thoughts and feelings with someone other than a friend or family member.
Marriage/Partner Conflict - Therapy can assist partners in reducing conflict and increasing communication satisfaction. With an experienced clinician, you will be assisted in approaching sensitive topics for an improved intimacy and greater relationship closeness with your partner. Issues of infidelity, cyber affairs, and long-term resentment are common reasons that couples seek counseling.
Job and Daily Stress - Many individuals seek counseling when their otherwise enjoyable and successful lives become overly demanding or less enjoyable. Therapy is not JUST for people with dysfunctional and messy lives. Many times in the course of a lifetime we may experience a particularly challenging milestone (new marriage, parents' divorce, layoff, job promotion, loss of a loved one) that can be processed and explored with a supportive ear. Active listening with kindness, and gentle guidance, are tools of an experienced therapist. Simple homework and verbal processing (talk therapy) can bring great relief and resolution for the bereaved or burnt out.
Not as Seen on TV! - The process of therapy is often portrayed on television as an explosive and intense experience between therapist and client. Worse yet, couples appear to be encouraged to fight, bicker, or break each other down. Improved mental health (feeling valued and worthy) comes when we feel "heard" by our partner - how on earth can we be heard when we feel attacked or insulted?
Professional counseling should be a respectful and reasonable encounter, with an emphasis on putting our best foot forward towards hearing each other and promoting self-growth. A licensed and skilled therapist will be an excellent listener, setting an example of good communication skills. Counseling is a great opportunity to sharpen your awareness of personal thoughts, insights, and goals, but it is not the role of the therapist to tell you how you feel or convince you of a certain position.
Here are some ways to make your time with a therapist productive and successful. 1) Take a few deep breaths before walking into the office 2) Discuss past therapy successes (or failures) 3) Share your expectations of therapy - even if you think it won't help 4) State your hope, "I hope this helps me get along with my family better." 5) Make a conscious decision to think and act differently 6) Recognize small improvements along the way, "I'm sleeping a little better."
Please inquire if you are the parent of a Special Needs child. Groups for latency-aged children will be offered throughout the school year. Peer-to-peer support and encouragement is vital for social development, growth, and a sense of mastery.
Distress Signs in Younger Children:
Adolescent Concerns Addressed in Therapy:
Copyright of Christina Neumeyer, 2017