I’m a Therapist: Here’s What Annoys Me…

It really takes a lot to get on my nerves as a therapist. In fact, there are very few things that would actually annoy me when working with someone. But there is one thing I find myself frustrated by whenever the issue shows up:

The controlling partner therapy veteran.

What, or who, is this?


Love: It Isn’t What You Think

Movies can create the impression that when two people are in-love they should always be lost in each other's gaze, smiling when they look at each other, or constantly in a state of "no, you hang up first". Sex happens slowly in front of a fireplace while you, again, gaze deeply into each other's eyes while the world turns to sepia. There's also no mess to clean up because, apparently, when you're in-love sex is pure and perfect and only comes in the heat of the utmost romance. And the most romantic story is, of course, where you have known each other for years and just never knew you were 'meant for each other' the whole time...


Depression: Life’s Bully

Depression is something many people struggle with to varying degrees. People can move in and out of depressive states, and can also find themselves stuck in a state for a prolonged period of time. When you're depressed, it can feel like you're dragging through life while towing a boulder behind you. It can be exhausting, painful, emotionally daunting and overwhelming at times, and even feel hopeless at times. It can feel like you don't have any energy and just want to sleep, or that even the good and positive moments in your life are less than fulfilling. Depression can sometimes feel as if life is focused on doing everything possible just to stay afloat and keep moving.


The Many Faces of Anxiety

Anxiety is often seen as a collective ball. An all-encompassing state of being that you either have or don't have.

But in reality, there are various forms of anxiety that one could struggle with (and they are not all optimally treated by the same therapeutic approaches as the other).


Fear of Flying: Plane Crashes and Reverse Normalization

The recent Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max accident has created a stir for people who already experience flying anxiety. For people who aren't afraid of flying, an incident like this tends to be just that -- an isolated incident amongst millions and millions of safe flights. It is, of course, always disturbing and upsetting to see the loss of life. At the same time, however, these incidents don't tend to deter the non-fearful flyer from flying. (Probably not much differently than you feel with driving. If you hear about a fatal car accident, it likely doesn't make you feel that you should stop driving).


Growing Up with Divorce — The Internal Split

It isn't news that growing up with divorced parents has an impact on our psychological and emotional lives. It's already well-known that children of divorce are more likely to end up in a broken marriage of their own as adults. It's also known that the earlier in one's life that they experience the divorce/separation of their parents, the greater impact it tends to have.


New Year’s and Self-Improvement

New Years can hold a variety of meaning for people. While the concept of the "New Year's Resolution" is a popular annual game, it is the overall opportunity that New Years represents which is worthy of our attention. The opportunities people embrace are different for everyone. But what New Years provides is a marker in time to check in with ourselves. These can be opportunities to improve ourselves overall, improve our relationships with ourselves and others, our emotional health, self-care, fulfillment habits, and others. These opportunities are really open to us year round, but New Years is a convenient point in time that reminds us to reflect on our lives as a whole, including our self-improvement goals.


Dealing with Family on the Holidays

"Dealing" with family. It would be nice if everybody was able to cherish their family time in the manner the holiday classics envision, but sadly, this isn't reality for many people. The holidays have a way of bringing families together, but for some, being...


The Difficulty of Overcoming Fear of Flying

Fear of flying (or flying anxiety, flying phobia) is a difficult fear for many to kick. It has a way of paralyzing people into long-term avoidance of flying or into crippling levels of anxiety, ranging from panic attacks to complete shut down when faced with flying. Even the mere thought of flying for some can trigger anxiety and panic on its own. But, why is fear of flying often so difficult for people to overcome?


Does Nostalgia Fuel Depression?

Ah, the good old days.

If only I could go back and relive those moments. Nothing will ever be as good as that time with my friends as a teenager, the holidays with my family, or playing in the backyard as a child, chasing my dog. Or many other moments in the past that I wish I could revisit.

I wish I could rewind the movie of my life and be there again, as if for the first time, but this time to "know then what I know now." How I wouldn't take it for granted this time. How I'd be aware with every passing moment how special each moment actually is and was, and truly cherish them in the moment this time around.