Quitting substances isn't always a simple choice; it is often asking someone to give up their greatest coping strategy as well as their social network. Many individuals turn to substances or pleasure-seeking behaviors to alleviate attachment difficulties or trauma, and then become physiologically dependent. We will look at the neurobiology of addiction and the underlying social factors that contribute to addictive cycles, and collaboratively work towards building a lifestyle that is more aligned with your personal values.
In addition to counseling, I also offer supplemental Acudetox, a 5-point acupuncture protocol designed to reduce cravings, minimize withdrawal symptoms, improve sleep, and instill a sense of calm. This treatment is available upon request.
BETRAYED PARTNER TRAUMA
Finding out that you significant other has had an affair or has maintained a sex addiction behind your back can make you feel like you are losing your mind. You can’t figure out if you should stay or go and if you do stay, how can you prevent this from happening again? The very person that you want to turn to for comfort and support is the same one that has hurt you. You may question your ability to perceive your world accurately. You may be flooded with all of the times in your past when you suspected that something was going on, but then you pushed it out of your mind because you believed that your partner would never do that to you. Your grief over the lies, omissions, or gaslighting behaviors is so palpable it sometimes causes you physical pain. This is not a time to be alone. What you are experiencing is trauma, and you need a safe place to heal. Let’s figure it out together.
If you are going through a formal disclosure process with your partner, I can prepare you and be there for you as an experienced guide. I have been trained as a Certified Partner Trauma Therapist by the International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professionals.
ANXIETY & DEPRESSION
Anxiety is usually the first symptom that appears to let you know that something is not right. It is the unshakeable wake-up call that your emotional realm needs tending, and it will have you running in circles until you face it. We can answer this call together, and look at the underlying experiences to which it is calling your attention.
Like anxiety, depression is the debilitating sense that something is wrong, and you are at a loss as to how to move forward. It is the pathway to despair paved with the beliefs of what we think we should be capable of. I think of depression as the opening lines of Dante's Inferno where he writes, "Midway upon the journey of our life I found myself within a forest dark, for the straightforward path had been lost." There is a path even if you can't see it, and we can find it together.
Traumatizing events obliterate our understanding of the world as safe, and often alienate us from those we love. It fragments our memory (making us question our own reality) as we dissociate from parts of ourselves just to survive. We often play-out the event in uncontrollable stress responses (fight, flight, freeze, play dead, call for help, or submit) until the traumatic event is addressed. Furthermore, trauma ruptures our sense of control and autonomy, leaving us with an underlying belief that we are powerless. Together we will work to find and reincorporate these dissociated parts of self with safety and compassion, and look for larger social narratives that can provide context, meaning, and strength.
As a trained EMDR specialist, I also include this form of treatment with clients whom I see in-person for trauma counseling. EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a scientifically-proven form of guided therapy that uses bilateral stimulation to stimulate new neural pathways while processing traumatic events.
GRIEF AND BEREAVEMENT
The time of grief is lonely, and full of unexpected moments when loss surprises you with longing, and overwhelming sadness. Though we know it is an inevitable part of living, we don't think of loss until it is upon us which makes it all the more difficult. Additionally, there are often multiple losses that coincide with any loss that can feel like an avalanche taking you over. Often, we are grieving the loss of our own identity in relationship with another. The therapeutic space can provide containment for your loss, and together we can develop a meaningful remembrance.
ARTIST AND WRITERS
The creative process is often mercurial and full of self doubt. You may be asking yourself: How will I get my vision onto the page or the canvas? What exactly do I have to say that hasn’t been said before? Do I have the skills to make my art? Will my art be good enough? We will work together to build a practice in which you are consistently able to tap into that creative flow. At its heart creativity requires dedication and a sense of play. In practice, it is a dance between cleverness, feeling, work, and spirituality while simultaneously maintaining a sense of courage and belief that your art is important and needs to be made. We can work together to remove the obstacles that are preventing you from making your art, and develop an enriching practice that will carry you throughout a lifetime of creative interest.
TWINS AND TWINSHIP
Twins have a special bond, but it isn't always an easy bond. In twin relationships, oftentimes the primary caregiver's attention is divided between the twins which can create delays in getting needs met for one twin or the other, and instill a sense of guilt as one twin takes the parent's attention from the other. Attachment grows as a triadic rather than between the parent and child. Often twins are parented as a unit, and rarely experience time alone. This can carry over into adulthood, as difficulty with attachment, codependency, or finding and living an individual identity outside of the twin bond. Furthermore, it can feel like a betrayal when one twin seeks out a different life. I work with adult twins either individually or within the twinship to help them navigate this unique need for connection, identity, and independence.
VETERANS AND MILITARY FAMILIES
Military culture is a completely unique way of life, and consequently veterans and military families often need a provider who understands the particular challenges of this lifestyle. We’ve all heard of war-related post-traumatic stress and military sexual trauma which are the most devastating experiences to affect a service-member. However, between deployments, PCS transfers, and just the hardships of military structure, military life is not easy even if one manages to make it through without experiencing major trauma. Service men and women are prone to chronic fatigue, and major life transitions which can cause difficulty long after one has left the military. Even more, service-members who discharge from the military often struggle with recreating their identity and social networks outside of the service. I know how difficult it can be to explain what you’re going through to someone who has never been in the military. Because of my own personal military experience, I believe that together we can meet these challenges. Please inquire about discounted rates for veterans.