capturing the beautiful calamity of healing in therapy

Tag: self-harm

The Opposite of Being Loved is Not Being Hated; It’s Being Misunderstood

The Opposite of Being Loved is Not Being Hated; It’s Being Misunderstood

I don’t have therapy goals. I just hate myself. She practically spat those words at me during our intake, when we were sitting across from each other, going back-and-forth, engaging in the typical therapist question-and-answer banter. She didn’t have defined therapy goals or objectives, and […]

Happiness & Brushing Your Teeth

What are your goals for therapy? Client shrugs. Looks down at the ground, uncertain with herself, uncertain with everything around her, nervous and clearly uncomfortable in her own skin. I don’t know. I just want to be happy.  Every therapist in every office has heard this […]

The Client who Hated Therapists

She was broken when I first met her. These were her words, not mine, and she hated therapists. Barely made eye contact, hair hanging long in front of her face, a hollow shell of trauma laden with all the resulting symptoms that come from that- scars up […]

Fifty Shades of Recovery

We throw around this word “recovery” all the time, as if it is some kind of magical elixir or concrete trophy of success. We use it simplistically, an overarching term that neglects to address the subjectivity that characterize its very nature. I don’t believe anything about recovery is simple, […]

Don’t be a passenger in your own car!

The point of this blog post is to share why getting in the driver’s seat is an essential part of mental health healing. Before I delve into my rationale, I want to emphasize that when you are a passenger in your own car, you are letting […]

Why You Can’t Shut People Out

My clients sometimes tell me that they push people away to avoid getting hurt. To them, closeness is synonymous with rejection, and they will avoid such bonding as a means to prevent the inevitable pain. These people tell me they have been hurt too many […]

Why You Absolutely Must Love Yourself

When you cannot love yourself, not much else in your life will really matter. The accomplishments won’t matter. The perfect body or the perfect car or perfect house won’t really matter, either. You may be on the proverbial hamster wheel towards success, doing what you […]

You aren’t sabotaging yourself

I hear about self-sabotage syndrome all the time. The addict uses just before leaving rehab. The dieter binges just before her weigh-in. The student parties the night just before a huge exam. The woman cheats just before her marriage. Clients use it, therapists use it, […]

The Willigness to Forgive Yourself

The majority of people I work with hate themselves. Rumination over the past, continuous regrets over what should have, could have, would have been different, and the merciless resentments they hold inwards have created a permanent narrative of failure and incompetence. All the accolades and […]

The Message of Depression

One of my favorite supervisors hypothesized, depression happens when expectations supersede reality. I have to agree. I also have to note that it appears we live in a society designed for this kind of lopsided cycle to thrive. When we are constantly bombarded with messages […]