Registered Psychotherapy Services in Ontario, Canada
Psychotherapists have a wide range of practices when it comes to helping you deal with serious psychological difficulties. We all have to be able to work with stress, anger, anxiety and depression. We all need to address self-esteem issues. Psychotherapists treat mental health issues and disorders by psychological approaches rather than medical means. In Ontario, Canada, the services are regulated since April 2015 by the College of Psychotherapist of Ontario (CRPO).
Some Psychotherapists seem to work better in “Growth” mindset and others appear to work better in “Fix” mindset. Because of my basic search for understanding inner connection I naturally tend to work in “growth” mindset where I teach people to safely and wisely look for their own path” I teach people in recovery how to get and find the answers inside of themselves. I have a lesser tendency to “fix”, give, provide with, furnish with, answers, to my clients. The only thing I will teach no matter what is the “Safety Net” we all need to get to both “Growth” AND “Fix” pathways.
I am specialized in crisis intervention, conflict resolution, in the treatment of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and working with individuals living with Personality Disorders. When it comes to Psychotherapy, as well as for Sex-Therapy, this is what I love the most. There are not as many Psychotherapists chosing trauma and conflict resolution as a specialty. I just love teaming up with my brave clients trying to find the most adaptive and courageous inner solution for the situation from the time of consultation and beyond. Having been in recovery myself, I keep learning that I was born with the gift of trying my best when life is quite challenging. This entails doing creative, outside of the box thinking, helping my client’s wisely and responsibly manage their lifes. Many of us in recovery know that we often are good and creative with crisis intervention because it’s often been our “normal” or “usual”, growing up.
A trauma can be a unique tragic event, like a car acident, a suicide in the family, a fire, a terrorist attack or an assault. It can also happen when our identity is stolen. More often for many of us, it happens through “apparently little” repetitive events over which we are powerless at the time. It could be the neighbour’s malfunctionning air conditioner noise in the middle of the night, or harassment at work, even though we have repeatedly asked for improvement. It can be the pitch of voices of loved ones fighting every night. It could be the abandonment caused by the hospitalisation of a caregiver in childhood.
We experience that the brain is wired for survival. When a person is very upset, the brain cannot process information as it does otherwise. One moment becomes “frozen in time”. It is often played over and over again like a broken record. Remembering a trauma may feel as bad as going through it the first time because the images, sounds, smells and feelings haven’t changed. And they are charged until we desensitize and reprocess them. Such memories have a lasting negative effect on the way we see the world and relate to other people that interfere with our life. Those memories can be triggered by everyday events. The typical reaction of the brain at the time of the trauma is to “disconnect” the memory of the trauma in order to stop suffering at any cost. Usual reactions to a crisis or a trauma can be:
- varying from “flashbacks”, disturbing and invading memories of the traumatic events to it’s opposite, up to total loss of memory of past events;
- numbness and/or detachment, including out-of-body feelings;
- nightmares and insomnia;
- anxiety, fear, horror, terror, sadness, grief, depression, fatigue;
- shame, guilt, powerlessness, tears or the complete absence of feelings;
- irritability, anger, hostility, rage;
- change in appetite, libido, concentration, motivation;
- fear and avoidance of both usual routines and of situations or of people that bring the event back to our attention;
- feeling of worthlessness, both toward oneself and the rest of the world, etc.
We all need safety, security, survival and serenity.
One of my passion over the years, has been to bring the “Psyche” back in Psychotherapy. Of course, 60, 70 years ago, we needed to map the brain to have a better idea of what we were doing collectively as Psychotherapists. But sadly I believe, too often, deep connecting to self was put aside to achieve so. I always worked my hardest at bringing the inner authenticity safely back into Psychotherapy with compassion, metaphors, humour and creativity. This is why I so insist on first thing building a powerful Safety Net.
What to do?
Of course, consulting directly with a Psychotherapist when we or someone we care for, suffer from mild to delibitating mental issues is the way to go. Consulting a qualified practitioner could save a life.
Some advanced C.B.T.* and D.B.T.* are geared to address trauma. If we add E.M.D.R.* and I.E.M.T.*, we increase the chance of a breakthrough. EMDR and I.E.M.T. seem to have a direct effect on the way that the brain functions. Normal processing of information is resumed, so we know that following a successful EMDR session for example, the images, sounds and feelings are no longer re-lived when the event is brought to mind. What happened is still remembered, but it is less upsetting. Many courageous survivors will even use the new skills to better other peoples lives. Many types of therapy have similar goals, however EMDR appears to be similar to what occurs naturally during dreaming or REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Therefore, EMDR as well as I.E.M.T. can be thought of as physiologically-based therapies that help a person see disturbing material in a new and less distressing way.
*C.B.T.: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy;
*D.B.T.: Dialectical Behavioural Therapy;
*E.M.D.R.: Eye Movement Disensitization and Reprocessing;
*I.E.M.T.: Integrative Eye Movement Therapy.