I know that struggles related to infertility, third party reproduction, perinatal/postpartum issues and conflict in relationships can cause you to feel overwhelmed, isolated, frustrated and helpless. It may feel that no one truly understands your pain and sadness. Friends and family aren’t able to give you the support you need, and you feel lost, not recognizing yourself or the life you are living. My role is to help you learn how to identify, process and manage your feelings and emotions, and develop ways to thrive. I believe in an integrative approach to treatment and take into account the whole person (mind, body, spirit).
While on the infertility rollercoaster, you may feel isolated, hopeless, frustrated and anxious. You may feel as though you have pressed the pause button and can no longer focus on other parts of your world. I am here to help you navigate, process and learn to manage the distress infertility has caused in your life.
Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders
Society tells us becoming a mother is all unicorns and rainbows. Reality is pregnancy and motherhood can cause us to feel anxious, depressed, overwhelmed, defective, hopeless, disconnected and empty. It can also bring on “scary thoughts”. This may be a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder you are not alone, and you will feel like yourself again.
Third Party Reproduction
Most reproductive endocrinologists and clinics require donor recipient consultations when using an egg donor, sperm donor or embryo donor. I meet with individuals and couples for these psychoeducational consultations and provide written reports to their reproductive endocrinologists.
As women we strive to be everything to everyone…but ourselves. We are learning that taking care of ourselves is just as necessary as the care we give others. Together we can work on developing your self-care and healthy habits.
Relationships require time, effort and attention. Every individual comes into a relationship with a past that has shaped them through experiences and core beliefs. When conflict arises between the couple, it can become very difficult to effectively communicate and resolve the issue. We can work together to heal and build a healthier relationship.
Internal Family Systems (IFS)
Internal Family Systems is a an evidence based model of therapy that focuses on our inner experiences. IFS is based on the belief that we are composed of many parts, and it uses the strengths of our parts to care for the parts of us that have been hurt in the past. By identifying and caring for the different parts of who we are, we can heal the hurts and pain of the past and better care for ourselves. By acknowledging our parts, meeting the needs of parts that were injured in the past, and gaining awareness and access to our innate self, we can create healthy relationships and connections. IFS therapy is primarily focused on exploring the connections between past and present patterns of thinking, feeling, and doing.
Psychodynamic therapy focuses on thoughts that exist in a person’s unconscious mind. The goal is to find the root cause of the problems. Clients talk about thoughts and feelings that come to mind while the therapist helps identify behavior patterns and feelings that have developed in the unconscious mind. Once these thoughts and behaviors are identified, the therapist helps the client understand how the patterns affect their life and help them to develop healthy coping skills.
Interpersonal therapy is a time limited model (12-16 weeks) that focuses on a person’s relationships. IPT is based on the belief that a person’s mental health improves when they strengthen the relationships with the people in their life; when they build a support system.
IPT focuses on the present situation. Past experiences are discussed, but are not the main focus. The therapist helps the patient identify sources of their emotions and develop ways to better express them. A large part of IPT is teaching communication skills that assist in building relationships, developing stronger social support, and increasing confidence.
Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART)
ART is a type of therapy with specific steps, techniques, and protocols that are followed to address various problems and symptoms. ART works directly to change the ways distressing memories and images are stored in the brain so they do not trigger strong physical and emotional reactions. ART does this through the use of rapid eye movements similar to eye movements that occur during the dream stage of sleep. ART uses a technique called Voluntary Memory/Image Replacement, where distressing, images are replaced with calming images. It is not necessary to discuss the trauma in this process. The goal of ART is to eliminate or reduce the physical and/or emotional reactions to traumatic memories.
Mindfulness is an evidence and experience based therapy. It focuses on being present and in the moment; aware of our surroundings and observing our thoughts and feelings without judgment. Mindfulness is about living in the moment, not dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. It can reduce stress and anxiety, decrease depressive symptoms and increase insight and awareness of ourselves and those around us. Mindfulness can be transformative; it allows us to see our thoughts and emotions as just thoughts and emotions, not absolute truths. We begin to realize that although an emotion may be distressing, it is temporary, it does not define us, and it will pass. In mindfulness we stop identifying with the thoughts and emotions, and our mind stops being in control of strong feelings and thoughts.
“You don’t have to see the staircase, just take the first step”