Here are answers to some of the most commonly asked questions I'm asked:
WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PREDICTOR OF THERAPY SUCCESS?
I believe that certain modalities are better for certain clients depending on their unique needs. For example, EMDR is an empirically supported modality for trauma and CBT for anxiety and depression. In my experience, when clients are internally motivated, I see them making amazing progress. However, research shows the most important predictor of positive therapy outcomes is the therapeutic relationship. That is why it is so important to make sure that you find a therapist that you trust and feel you have a good rapport with.
DO I NEED TO ONLY HAVE ADDICTION ISSUES TO SEE YOU?
No. Although addiction is usually the issue that initially brings people in to my office, the reality is that Addiction is not an isolated condition. It is usually the symptom of other issues that end up fueling it. When I work with these clients, not only do we deal with the addictive behaviours but we end up working on the deeper issues fueling addiction which can include depression, anxiety, trauma, and low self-esteem.
I also work with clients who have issues with codependency, intimacy/relationship challenges, and body image issues.
If you'd like to know if we can work together, please email me.
HOW LONG DOES THERAPY TAKE?
There's no quick answer to this. It depends on what issues you are presenting with and what your goals are.
If you are limited in terms of how many sessions you can do,(eg. financially or through EAP) then we will discuss a plan that outlines realistic goals that we can achieve in the time you have.
I work collaboratively with my clients so we will assess the progress you are making and adjust our plan accordingly.
WHEN IS A GOOD TIME TO ADDRESS TRAUMA IF I AM IN ADDICTION RECOVERY?
Trauma most often underlies addictive behaviour. Addressing trauma and its impact on you is an extremely important part of the therapy process, however the timing is just as crucial.
I do not recommend that you delve into trauma until your addictive behaviours are stabilized.
Bringing up the trauma before you are stabilized can be a trigger to relapse and it can also be re-traumatizing. Safety is one of the most important parts of therapy. Although you might feel eager and compelled to dive in to trauma work, you need to feel safe adn stabilized first and foremost. This means that you can manage your emotions by other ways other than drugs, alcohol or orther addictive behaviour. It also means that you have a support network of healthy people who can support you as well as knowing how to practice self-care. Having physical safety is another crucial element that needs to be in place before trauma work can be processed. As we work together, we will collaborate to determine when and how the trauma will best be addressed for you.