Residing underneath the deepest misunderstandings lies a desire to connect and be understood. For those of us up to the challenge marriage and other commited love relationships provide not only an opportunity for connection and understanding but also a spiritual path throught which we get to know ourselves more deeply.
Through the process of couples therapy I operate as a process consultant with the aim to help couples:
-Name and reduce the negative cycles they get caught in.
-Explore defences that no longer serve the relationship.
-Create safety to bring forward underlying feelings and longings for connections.
-Support safety enhancing patterns so that partners can tolerate more vulnerability
-Consolidate the new cycles of communication and reinforce new and lasting patterns of security.
In working with couples I primarily work from an approach called Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) that supports healthy adult attachment. EFT is an empirically supported humanistic treatment that arose out of emotion and attachment theories. I also incorporate Stan Tatkin's psychobiological apprach as well as Hal and Sidra Stone's Voice Dialogue into couples treatment.
I have spent a significant amount of time as a clinician working with teenagers. The unique and often rocky phase of life called tweenage and teenagedome is often lost in todays cultural dichotomy of production and convenience. The essence of adolescence is about stepping out of the home and into the village. It is a phase of life that requires rebellion and novelty seeking. Psychotherapy is a wonderful way to provide a teen with an experience of the village to provide both. It is the paradox of pushing against that both makes adolensence so tumultious and yet also captures the essence of who a young person is so deeply striving to become and who they truely are.
As a teen therapist I aim to connect with teens in a unique and authentic way. Many teens might regard me as an uncle or older wiser brother. As a therapist it is very important to meet teens at their level while also maitaining a certain level of authority that comes with age. Walking that line can be difficult for adults in their relationship with teens. I concurrently maintain a level of confidentiality with my teen clients so as to honor their need for trust in me. I do however make it clear to all of my teen clients that if they are going to make a choice that puts them or someone else in extreme risk that I am obligated by law to break confidentiality as my duty to protect them.
Additionally parents are often lost about how to resopond to their teenagers. As young people grow older parents will have to change their approach to parenting. This will mean more more responsibilities and freedoms for the young person. I aim to collaborate and provide parent coaching when necessary and helpful. I may aim to discuss the general theme of the adolescents therapy and how parents can support their teen in the home, at school, and through collaboration with extended family, or between divorced or seperated couples.
The most important journey you may make in your life is the journey of building an honest and compassionate relationship with yourself. From shame, pride, trauma, and introjected "shoulds" there are so many reasons that we often operate from a partial and compassionless understanding of ourselves. These blind spots can cause us anxiety, depression, addictions and a multitude of other symptoms that we mistake to be "who we are". I have faith in the human condition and the ability to heal into our own fullness. Therapy is the place to make this journey.
One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is working with other men. In my experience men typically operate in relationship from the perspective of "you first" or "me first". Both stances cause suffering for him and the loved ones that surround them. One position leaves a man feeling connected but impotent, the other leaves a man with his pride in tact yet deeply alone. It is very common for men to feel a sense of deep alienation and aloneness. As men we often receive the cultural message that your supposed to be able to " pick your self up by your boot straps." This mentality may work a few times but ultimately it further buries the truth of the suffering that men often bear. In my work with men I aim to slow things down and redefine our lost vulnerability as our deepest strength and inner guide. Most importantly in my work with men I undo the script that you have to do this thing called life alone. Alone we suffer together we thrive. Even in the heart of the strongest warriors we know this vulnerable truth.
I specialize in PTSD and CPTSD. In my practice I use EMDR an APA approved method for working with trauma. I also use AEDP to help with instilling and expediting healing. Please feel free to read more about these methods in my about me section.
I beg you not to suffer a moment longer with trauma and or trauma related symptoms. You do not need to do this alone, help is often accomplished must faster than most expect. I offer a number of clinical tools to help manage symptoms of PTSD and other relational traumas as well as a welcoming and counter shaming attitude and personal demeanor. After a traumatic event or history or repeated traumas it can be hard to have hope or trust. Don't fall into the trap of doing this alone, trust that very part of you that may be reading this text or seeking help. Act now to reclaim your life.
Trauma manifests in three major realms; interpersonal (those we know), impersonal (those we don't know), and situational (events such as an accident or weather phenomena). Trauma often causes people to live in polarities such as: shame or pride, rage or compulsive niceness, a deep sense of aloness or the innability to be alone, paranoia or over trusting, vengefulness or overprotection towards others. Trauma often shows up as terrible body sensations that feel all but impossible to manage and can take over the body in seconds. Regardless of its cause negotiating trauma necessitates regaining a sense of control, self compassion, and a deep sense of groundedness. Typical trauma therapy includes the following three phases.
Step One- (This step is necessary)
Managing Symptoms of Arousal and or Dissociation (getting worked up or spacing out)
Stopping Flashbacks (bodily or imaginal)
Developing Resources and Self Soothing Techniques
Rediscovering Strength and Relief
Step Two- (This step may be optional)
Proactively Engaging Resources when needed.
Learning how to Time Shift from "then" to "now"
Renegotiating Traumatic Memories or Unresolved Scenarios
Step Three- (This step is necessary)
Metaprocessing negative beliefs developed during states of arousal
Exploring and Consolidating New or resilient beliefs developed through Resourcing and Renegotiation
Discovering or Rediscovering pleasure and safety
Learning how to take Appropriate Chances again
Maintaining Triumph in the face of Previous Triggers
The ultimate goal of trauma treatment is to reduce or eliminate symptoms and enhance resilience. My goal is to help you feel back in control of your life again. Sometimes a little help can go a long way!