My approach to therapy has developed the reputation of a positive, asset-based approach. My experience providing therapy has taught me that people are more resilient and capable than they think. In therapy, most people find that they have more that is “right” with them than they suspected. What often looks like an impossible situation is discovered to be an opportunity for growth and maturity. It is in learning to trust ourselves and access our own resources that healing and growth take place. It is also in learning to develop a solid and secure intimate relationship that we find ourselves loving and being loved in ways we never imagined possible. By learning to create and sustain an “attraction-based” relationship, we become more secure and confident in ourselves, with our partner and in the world.
I use a no-nonsense approach that explores how natural growth in committed relationships can create boredom, lack of passion and alienation. This form of therapy addresses common-but -difficult problems that are inherently part of emotionally committed relationships. Marital difficulties are often midpoints or crossroads in the evolution of healthy relationships rather than signs of person inadequacy, incompatibility or falling out of love. This form of therapy develops the mutual capacity to create a secure functioning relationship, even amidst personal and other insecurities. I find that most couples want more “intimacy” and need to develop the skills necessary to fully participate in it.
The typical format is to meet for 2-3 hours for an initial session, then to continue on a bi-weekly or tri-weekly basis for 2-hour sessions as needed. I have found that a longer, more intensive session with expanded times between sessions accelerates the therapeutic process and shortens the overall length of therapy. At the end of the first session, couples often report a “shift” in perspective on their relationship, as well as a greater understanding of who they are individually and as a couple, how they got there, how their current relationship problems make sense, and greater insight into what is really going on. For a couple that comes in ready to work, the average length of therapy is approximately 5-7 sessions.
I primarily use a “Psycho-Biological Approach” that is focused on creating secure functioning in the couple. This includes working with the attachment structures of each person and understanding how they overlap and conflict. We also develop an understanding of how each person’s attachment structure has contributed to the current, understandable, deficits in the relationship. From there, we work to either develop areas of deficit or create ways to work with them in a more relationship-enhancing way. In addition, we work on a neurobiological level, reading and creating greater awareness of each person’s nervous system arousal patterns, and related behaviors. This is all done in the framework of many relationship theories that explain the systemic mechanics of what is happening.
I have limited openings for adult individual therapy. Individual therapy is about the development of you and is used to address issues and difficulties unique to the individual. Adjustment, anxiety, depression, parenting difficulties, workplace issues, grief, intimacy and relationship issues are common presenting problems. My approach to individual therapy is similar to couple therapy in that it is focused on strength, growth, personal development and problem solving. The emphasis is on wellness and strength, rather than “pathology” or “weakness.” This form of individual therapy works to resolve the past in the present. Phone and Skype appointments are available to individuals after an initial faced-to-face intake session.
Family therapy is a cost-effective, short-term, results-oriented form of treatment that involves all members of the family working together in session. Family therapy is focused on process and how relationships within the family may be causing difficulties. Family therapy also explores how relationships in the family may aid in problem-solving as well as healing.