My Approach to Helping
If you're in midlife or beyond, wondering how you got here, what happened to your life and what to do now, I can help.
Unrest at midlife and beyond is to some extent a part of normal life transitions, but many factors, alone or in combination, create chaos and crisis at midlife. You may feel disillusionment after having followed what you thought was 'the plan' yet not achieving financial or career success or long-term contentment in a supportive relationship. Your health or that of your parents may be failing. You may be 'empty nesters' as the result of grown children leaving home - or they may unexpectedly have returned home as your adult dependents. Life may no longer embody a sense of satisfaction, meaning or purpose. Institutions you believed would always remain bulwarks of stability in an uncertain world may be crumbling. You may wonder how your life, even your entire world, managed to move 'off course' so dramatically.
I enjoy working with people like you to find answers to thorny, nagging mid-life questions. Through a combination of empathy, compassion, deep listening, incisive questioning, humor and patience, I'll help you make sense of your life and be able to move forward confidently.
More Info About My Practice
I am currently accepting new clients ages 40 and over who are ready to dive into the thorny mid-life questions that keep you preoccupied all too often during the day and awake at night. I have a special affinity for members of the legal and medical professions; gifted, creative and highly sensitive people; people with disabilities, planning for children with special needs or caring for aging parents; people who are childless; and people who are searching for deeper meaning, values clarification or enhanced spirituality.
How My Own Struggles Made Me a Better Therapist
Life sometimes drives hard bargains. Midlife certainly did with me. Serious health challenges, financial difficulties, unemployment and the stresses of caring for aging parents during graduate school and a career change challenged my coping ability almost to the breaking point at times. I would not like to repeat those struggles, but I grew from them. I learned to discern which of my coping strategies were helpful and which were harmful, and through these experiences I was able to develop a greater sense of compassion for myself, which I now extend to those with whom I'm privileged to do this work.
My View on the Nature of 'Disorders'
Neuro-scientific research and a perspective shift on the part of mental health professionals now support the contentions that mental health and 'illness' exist on a continuum rather than as polarities and that there are more of us who are 'abnormal' than 'normal' in terms of mental wellness. We are each somewhere on the continuum and each a unique human being. Humans need certain levels of biological hardiness, safety, nurturing and connections in order to grow and become resilient. Human suffering in reaction to deficiencies in any of those areas is predictable and not necessarily evidence of mental or emotional disorders. That said, please be aware that if you are utilizing insurance as payment for counseling services, I will have to assign a mental health diagnosis in order to receive payment. I wish this were not the case!