Home May 2015 I’m Not Just a Therapist, I’m a Client Too

I’m Not Just a Therapist, I’m a Client Too

I’m a mental health professional. I’m a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. I have been working as a medical social worker in hospice end of life care for over a decade. I have a private psychotherapy practice for many years. During my life I have been a client off and on for as many years as I have been a mental health professional. I believe receiving mental health therapy makes a therapist a better therapist. Many of the best mental health therapists in the business receive therapy themselves. I know what you are asking yourself; then do many therapists have mental illness? of course not. It is called mental HEALTH. There is spiritual health, mental health, and physical health. Don’t we all just want to be healthier? We visit our physician when we are not ill for screenings and check ups. We visit our place of worship for learning and prayer when we are not in spiritual crisis. Why can’t we do the same for our mental health? We can.

Many of my clients are doing just that. They are seeking mental health therapy to improve the health of their minds and in turn improve their lives. We live in a society where we judge so much of what we do, “I should work harder”, “I should make more money”, and “I should lose weight and exercise more.” Many of the leading cognitive therapists will tell you that approximately 80% of our thoughts are negative, harmful, useless, and even erroneous. Negative thinking leads to negative emotions. A part of improving our mental health is learning to change our thinking. By removing negative thoughts we can experience more peace, love, and joy. We can move through life’s transitions and experience change with ease and comfort. You can create a life beyond your wildest dreams. The healthier your mind, the healthier your life, don’t believe me? Make an appointment and see for yourself.

Challenges Growing a Family

Dear those of you silently hurting,

Years ago there was a campaign in the mental health profession to help the “Silent Grievers”. At the time this referred to children.  Now there are many resources including therapists, groups, programs and camps focused on children and grief. (One such resource is Camp Erin Orange County, for more information visit www.kpcaringfoundation.org

I would argue that a new campaign is needed for another group of  “Silent Grievers”, those family and friends experiencing challenges and losses that can occur when growing a family.  Society has not caught up with the needs of those experiencing these kinds of losses.  Those that do acknowledge the loss of these life transitions usually focus on the mom to be.  But we know dads, grandparents, siblings, extended family, and friends grieve too. Well meaning people may try to minimize your loss and say less then helpful things such as: “you can always adopt,” “at least it happened now and not when he was a real person” and “maybe it wasn’t meant to be.” Your loss cannot be minimized. To heal this loss it must be validated, addressed, and nurtured. 

We talk about the loss of loved ones having no time line and being unique to the individual, why hasn’t society realized this pertains to all grief?  Nobody questions someone grieving the loss of a parent for a year or more, or honoring anniversaries of death going forward, in fact we often join them in the ritual.  Those of you who have dealt with these types of losses know that you often grieve alone.  You do not have to! You deserve the support you need. 

I am available for individual, couples, family, and grief counseling specializing in these difficult life transitions.  You will be heard.  Your grief will be validated.  Together we will help you find peace and ease through these difficult life transitions.

Call 714-584-8072 today and let the healing begin!

by Melissa Fisher Goldman, LCSW  

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