Anxiety / Depression
It is common for all of us to experience stress and mood changes at various points in our lives. Work, family, illness, and loss impact us all. At some point we may all question our purpose in life. For some, depression and anxiety are chronic issues. Trauma, early childhood experiences, concerns around meaning and purpose, life changes, as well as addictions can also impact our mood and sense of self. What compounds our symptoms are the sleep issues, changes in eating and self care habits, and self medication all serve to increase our pain. In depth psychotherapy, along other interventions such as EMDR can help alleviate our suffering. Having someone to explore our deepest concerns and the depth of our pain can have the effect of feeling less alone in the world.
If you are suffering from stress or more long term difficulties from anxiety and/or depression, please call for a consult.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is an intervention that facilitates the processing of disturbing life events, including traumatic memories, to help bring emotional relief and to reduce the symptoms of these events. The model, created by Dr. Fracine Shapiro, has been expanded upon such EMDR can be used not only for trauma, but for other situations such as: to reduce addictive triggers, to reduce anxiety and depressive symptoms, and for performance enhancement to name a few.
As human beings, we are wired to process information and are naturally adapted to heal. Shapiro’s Adaptive Information Processing (AIP) model suggests that traumatic experiences are stored in their own neural networks and are not able to link up to more adaptive and functional networks. Thus precluding our natural healing response. Neuroscience has shown that trauma memories are often stored in new neurons, thus their “stickiness.” Our brains encode memories. When a disturbing event occurs, it can get locked in the brain with the original pictures, sounds, thoughts, feelings, and body sensations; these are part of the traumatic neural pathways. Much like paths that animals use in the wild, these traumatic memory pathways are well formed and easily accessed (neurons that wire together, fire together) in order to help preserve life. Unfortunately, our natural adaptive responses are not always useful in modern life. So, when something in the world triggers our sense of fear or abandonment, these memory networks become activated and we respond accordingly by shutting down, having flashbacks, and other fear responses making it difficult to function from day to day. EMDR helps clear blocks to healing so that new pathways can form and more adaptive responses can occur.
Helping people better understand their relationship to and deep underlying beliefs about money and worth is a special passion of mine. It is rather telling that people are more likely to discuss their concerns about sex than their concerns about money- not only with me, but with their loved ones as well. For this reason, finances remain one of the biggest stressors in a relationship. With the current economic environment, understanding our relationship with money is more important than ever. Understanding your money issues - not just debt or spending, but wealth concerns as well- clarifies the underlying dynamics of your childhood and family of origin, and underlying beliefs about yourself.
What do I mean by wealth concerns? Having financial wealth can cause its own stress, anxiety and worry- and not just about the finances. Some may not understand this, believing that wealth will bring peace, but many of you out there know exactly what I mean. Are you fearful of never having enough? Of losing it all? Are you compulsive about and overwhelmed by work? Are there trust issues because of your wealth? Or maybe some other dynamic that you can not pinpoint? Money can be a powerful energy and influence in our lives - acquiring more does not always put us at ease. Those born into wealth may have unique concerns and dynamics that may hold them back in unexpected, but powerful, ways.
I help you explore ALL your beliefs about money and how these beliefs impact every area of your life, from the obvious to the (maybe) not so obvious - spiritual, relationship with self, and relationships with others.
Since the beginning of psychotherapy, sex and love have been causes of concerns and suffering and therefore a focus of treatment. Compulsive behaviors are often a symptom of something deeper. A sense of unfulfillment or longing that leaves us wanting more, and yet the more we seek fulfillment the more we desire. There is always the remainder. For those in a relationship with someone struggling, these behaviors cause much pain and suffering; often partners feel as though they were not enough. Your work will explore the causes of suffering and seek to change the behavior without judgment. For partners, I work to help you process the betrayal, anger, shame, and self-blame that stem from the dishonesty in the relationship. At the same time, our work will help you find a more life-fulfilling experience of sex and relationship.
As a trained Certified Sex Addiction (CSAT) therapist, I have completed training developed by Dr. Patrick Carnes, which required extensive training and supervision with a CSAT Supervisor. It also requires ongoing education so that CSATs such as myself are experts in providing sexual addiction therapy. It is a rigorous process designed to help me best help you.
With the widespread availability of the internet, many individuals are becoming addicted to pornography who otherwise would not have a problem. More and more teenagers and older adults are developing compulsivity issues. Often we need the guidance of another to discern what to do and how to release from the grips of unwanted behaviors. Finding a place of non judgement is imperative in determining how to move forward with your life. This is true if you are the one acting in opposition to your values or if you are a partner trying to determine whether to stay or leave a beloved other.
Immergence Consulting & Psychotherapy can work with organizations, institutions, and schools to provide training and develop a protocol for helping staff and students with compulsive behaviors.
For an online assessment, please go to sexhelp.com/addiction_tests.cfm.
Trauma and PTSD
In-depth Psychodynamic Therapy
Family of Origin Issues