How would you describe your style of psychotherapy?
I will listen. I will question and comment. I will be interested in your emotions. I will be respectful, encouraging and kind. I will tell you what I think. I may at times respectfully challenge you. I will have a plan and share it with you. I will occasionally suggest homework. I will write down key ideas for you so you can consider them at home. I welcome questions. We will be a team.
How can psychotherapy help?
Because psychotherapy is a supportive relationship in which unusual honesty is encouraged, the patient can feel less alone and gain new perspectives on his/her beliefs, history, emotions and needs. Once a person understands him or her self with new depth and clarity then new choices are possible. Also, as more and more aspects of the self are articulated and received compassionately, self acceptance deepens. Self acceptance is essential for a satisfying life.
What is your theoretical orientation?
Most theories have value and are not mutually exclusive. I am psychodynamic in that I believe in coming to terms with our emotions and our histories. I am cognitive/behavioral in that I believe healing involves thinking and acting in new ways. I am Jungian in that I believe we are all seeking wholeness and that we are assisted by our unconscious (including through dreams and art). I am existential in that I believe fundementally we are all very alike. I am spiritual in that I believe in the soulfulness of human beings. All these ideas blend into a coherent theoretical position.
How are your sessions structured?
I typically see patients once a week for 50 minute sessions. I now emply a 12 session limit to facilitate focus and increase my availability to others in need of assistance. I like whenever possible to have a regular day and time for us to meet so the therapy has a steady rhythm. I aim for each session to end with a sense of our having taken a meaningful step.
What is the first session typically like?
In the first session we will have a friendly introduction and do about 5 minutes of paperwork pertaining to contact and payment information. I will discuss treatment policies and welcome questions. Then we will talk about what you hope to gain from our work and what the main elements of your situation are. By the end of the first meeting we should have a broad outline of a plan that makes sense to us both.
How do you feel about psychiatric medications?
Medications can be helpful when symptoms are particularly stressful and not responsive to less risky interventions. I like to view medications as short term assistance whenever possible. For the long term, developing healthier relationships with our emotions, histories and others is much prefered. I have great faith in psychotherapy and the power of people to learn.
What is your approach to Couples Therapy?
In couples work I stress a responsibity model in which each partner acknowledges how they help and hurt the relationship We will assume the complaints each is hearing have some merit. No one is all right or all wrong. We will see how each partner's errors pertain to past injuries. Thus we can view the mistakes each makes in a compassionate context. In this way the partners co- create a relationship with increasing humility and trust.
How does payment work?
Payment is typically made via check or Venmo after each session or at the end of each month, as you prefer. I have discontinued accepting insurance and accept self pay only.