What is a Therapist?

There are many terms for therapy and those who provide therapy.  Some are therapist, counselor, counseling, psychotherapist or psychotherapy. A therapist is not a friend, but someone who will provide empathy and guidance while encouraging and challenging you. A therapist will help you identify goals for your well-being and things in your life you would like to improve.


Finding a therapist is not an easy task.  How do you pick someone you'll potentially invite to the most private parts of your life?  In your personal life you may feel you are not getting the level of support you need in certain areas.  This is a place a counselor can assist and when you feel comfortable, you can open up about your struggles.


Do I Need Therapy?

When the check engine light in my car comes on I go to the mechanic.  I need someone trained to help assess the situation, diagnose the problem and finally provide the remedy for my car.  If I tried to fix the problem myself, I would probably make it worse.  The longer I waited to take it in, the worse it would likely become.  I encourage people to think about therapy in the same way.  For example, if you and your daughter have been having the same relational problems for years (maybe arguing or not speaking), the two of you have been solidifying this negative interaction and likely making things worse.  The best way to help fix this is to bring in an objective professional, who is trained to help the two of you sort through what might be happening and help you both communicate effectively and move forward.


Many of my clients report symptoms commonly associated with depression, anxiety, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other mental health concerns.  If you are experiencing some of the symptoms listed below, you may benefit from therapy.


Possible Symptoms:

  • Difficulty falling or staying asleep

  • Sleeping all day, difficulty getting out of bed

  • Sadness

  • Little pleasure in regular activities

  • Weight loss or weight gain

  • Loss of appetite or increase in appetite

  • Hopelessness/helplessness

  • Panic or anxiety attacks

  • Guilt

  • Shame

  • Excessive worry or anxiety

  • Constant thoughts of the trauma

  • Nightmares or bad dreams

  • "Flash-backs" or feeling like they're rexperiencing to the trauma

  • Wanting to avoid thinking or talking about the trauma

  • Feel "numb" or detached from others

  • Relational conflicts

  • Drinking more alcohol then you normally do, or using other substances or behaviors to numb feelings or feel calm

  • Difficulty concentrating

  • Grief or bereavement

  • Changes in mood and/or emotions

  • Irritability

  • Suicidal thoughts or thoughts of hurting someone else (See Links and Resources immediately if you are having such thoughts)