Covid-19

Therapy in the Age of Covid-19

Therapy in the Age of Covid-19

 

Here at Life Coaching and Therapy, LLC (LCAT) we have practiced telemedicine to support emotional and relational healing . LCAT has utilized this non-traditional technique before the pandemic and were able to make the transition to predominately telemedicine seamlessly. 

Telemedicine (teletherapy or telehealth) is virtual therapy most commonly phone or video sessions (as this is what is currently covered by most insurances… especially during COVID). Texting therapy is another modality used but not covered in most insurance plans. 

 

Teletherapy in COVID-19

Covid has reshaped the world. There is a lot of suffering, a lot of fear, a lot of loss, and a lot of frustration. In addition to the challenging emotions in all of this, there have been changes in the way the healthcare field that have allowed for varying accessibility to support the safety and health of patients and their practitioners.

Many of my clients have had worries about telemedicine prior to COVID, but during this pandemic have begun utilizing and have found it to be better than they expected. Some cite it’s convenience while others identify it not “feeling much different.” 

As a therapist, I have enjoyed being able to be in people’s environments with them and utilize technology to intervene differently than I could in the past. In my opinion in some cases, it has made a cognitive shift to make those connections within their homes. In my practice, I have been able to utilize telemedicine to share screens, have clients sit in different rooms on different devices, show me their environments to come up with reasonable solutions, utilize EMDR, completing tasks together rather than making plans to do them, and workbooks. Clients have in many cases reported enjoying this more and finding it more effective. 

The ability to utilize these different interventions in technology have allowed for further connections between couples, families, and individuals. Challenging couples and families to have difficult conversations and face differing realities - allowing for an opportunity for relationships to find new strategies to meet the needs. Telehealth has allowed for closer connections to be fostered in all of the difficulty that is in our world right now. 

Sometimes that has allowed relationships to also see what is not possible and making conscious and intentional decisions to end the relationship (“conscious uncoupling”). This conscious decision allows for relationships to work amicably at collaborating to end a relationship. Telemedicine allows for these opportunities to work through this with more emotional safety and coaching around communication. 

 

Come to LCAT

Although telemedicine is not for everyone it can provide new opportunities for emotional and relational healing. Video, text, and phone therapy can be just what people may need if they are feeling stuck and have not found traditional models helpful. 

At LCAT each of our staff has been doing these modalities from the start. If you are interested in working on emotional healing through telehealth we are here for you, we take some insurances and offer sliding scales as well. Please check insurance plans to see what is covered under your plan. 

We are continuing to offer telehealth services to support the safety of our patients, staff, and community. Please contact us for more information!

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


web therapy

Do you know what Web Therapy is?

Do you know what Web Therapy is?

 

Let’s talk about web therapy and how you can use it to navigate issues alone or with a partner.

The Coronavirus pandemic and the self-imposed quarantine that all of us are experiencing are certainly some of the most interesting moments in my over ten years of working with individuals and couples.

It’s not exaggerating to say that for many people this is a traumatic event. Life has been turned upside down. You may have lost your job, known a loved one who got sick, or even been personally impacted by the disease. If you’re lucky enough to be spared direct impact, the effects of quarantine and what we see on the news all day are still serious.

If anything, Coronavirus is giving us a lightning round of insight into how we all move through grief into acceptance. It’s a turbulent time. Working with a therapist can help you understand why you are feeling the way you are and give you tactics to move through grief and get to acceptance.

That’s true whether you’re dealing with the effects of losing a job or the stress of a change in your home environment where you’re home all day around the people you love.

I’ve been developing web therapy along with a text therapy practice to help individuals and couples identify and work through issues in real-time. I offer strategies and tips at the moment to help you push to another level even when you can’t meet in person. Here’s how my clients are using web therapy to get where they want to be.

 

How Individuals Use Web Therapy to Overcome Obstacles

I remember when news of Coronavirus first started to hit. Back then, which was not too long ago, it was easy to brush it off and think, “That’s far away”, or “It seems so removed from my life”. In a matter of weeks, we’ve all come face to face with the pandemic.

What did that mean for all of my clients? What happened to the people I meet regularly who were seeing real progress? Suddenly, meeting in person was no longer feasible. Luckily, I’d been working for years on web therapy strategies to manage the transition.

web therapy

Working with clients over the web, we almost went through a crash course on how to manage the stages of grief. Many of them initially felt anger at the disruption in their lives. Emergencies can bring out the worst in people, and unfortunately, negative behaviors and opinions were broadcast everywhere. It was easy to get caught up.

Each client is still somewhere along the anger, bargaining, fear, and depression. It comes and it goes as we work to adjust to our new realities. With web therapy, we were able to maintain a regular communication to deal with the ups and downs.

What’s great about it is that you’re able to sign up for a week or a month, however long you think it serves a purpose or helps you deal with the issues you’re struggling with.

 

The Couples Counseling Cure

Web therapy has helped many of the couples I meet with in person. I’ve found that younger people often prefer using web and text, and it is even surprising how older couples have taken to meeting online because they can carve out space in a room inside the house even with the whole family home.

I’ve streamlined my strategies for couples into online and text therapy modules. We do something I call Triangulation Within the Couple, where we maintain a group chat and respond in real-time to each other’s concerns and celebrate our successes together when we meet online!

web therapy

That’s been incredibly effective during the Coronavirus pandemic because I’m seeing many couples struggle with staying home, balancing things like kids and chores while they experience anxiety over careers and the general outlook.

Web therapy provides an outlet for both partners to express concerns as they come up, and I provide tips on how to push through. In essence, I’m giving you a template that you’ll have on hand to refer back to and use when you need it. It’s been a lifesaver as couples still can work with a clinician from their homes.

I was using web therapy long before we all started living in quarantine and have seen its benefits for both helping couples overcome challenges and grow closer, and for others facilitate a conscious uncoupling to achieve the life they want. It’s versatile and lends you critical support.

 

Using Web Therapy to Stay Connected

As a therapist, the connection between our health and our community is evident. What’s happening around us affects our mental, emotional, and even physical health. The speed at which the Coronavirus disrupted our lives has helped many of my clients see it up close.

How can you stay healthy and balanced when you’re hearing about the Apocalypse, closed borders, huge job losses, and other horrible news?

Web therapy delivers an outlet whereby you can express anger, frustration, depression, and other emotions, even when you’re stuck in quarantine. Remember, these emotions are legitimate. It’s ok to be angry or depressed about what’s happening.

Connection is what all of us need in times of stress when we’re dealing with trauma and uncertainty. Using online solutions allows me, as a therapist, to keep ties with you as you strive to create positivity in new circumstances.

It’s still possible to form strong bonds with your therapist and see progress using your phone and meeting online. A 2013 peer-reviewed study found that, over the course of a six-week text therapy trial, “results indicated that the impact of exchanges and client–therapist alliance in text therapy was similar to, but in some respects more positive than, previous evaluations of face-to-face therapy.” That’s great news!

 

Working Toward Acceptance

If we look hard enough, we can find incredible examples of acceptance and resilience all around us. Communities are doing what they can to support businesses, healthcare workers, and neighbors. Stress has made many families come together and hopefully, we’re on the phone more often with friends and distant family.

What’s amazing about working through the stages of grief is that, eventually, we come to acceptance, where we can come together and create something new. The speed at which we’re dealing with Coronavirus has certainly been a shock. As we move into acceptance, I think there are going to be some really great outcomes.

If you’re missing regular meetings with a therapist or find yourself stuck in a stage of grief, web therapy could be the solution. Don’t struggle with anxiety, fear, anger, or a sense of hopelessness alone. Discover tools to help overcome negativity and work on your relationships with the help of an expert. You’ll see an immediate impact on the way you communicate with yourself and others.

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


Trauma Counseling

Trauma Counseling to Recover from People Pleasing

Trauma Counseling to Recover from People Pleasing

 

Often in trauma counseling and emotional healing, we focus on trauma responses that occur and perpetuate throughout someone’s life. 

The three most widely acknowledged trauma responses are: fight, flight, or freeze. 

Often these responses are unconscious and automatic, and if you are interested in your own traumatic response cycle, continue to read below! 

 

Trauma Responses

Traumatic responses caused by triggers are often seen in trauma counseling. 

The fight response is when someone is activated or “triggered” and responds aggressively or in a dominating way.  Fight can look like literally getting into fight, speaking aggressively, or even be a pursuer dynamic.

Flight is where someone leaves or “runs away.” This can look like someone emotionally removing themselves, literally removing themself from the circumstance, or avoiding any of the things that remind them of said trauma.

Freeze is when someone’s body and physiological responses “shut down.” This can look like someone not being able to move, someone not being responsive, or someone completely dissociating.

These trauma responses are most noted and discussed due to the research around Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (which is historically done around large scale traumas). These responses are clear and valid responses and after often addressed in trauma counseling and therapy.

As we learn more about trauma and the impact it can have, it has become more clear that “fawning” or “placating” is another trauma response. 

This is the response of “people pleasing” or placating others to avoid conflict or further harm/trauma to appease the abuser. 

This looks like a child trying to appease a parent to avoid further harm or a partner agreeing to something that they wouldn’t otherwise agree to if not for the fear of the others. 

This also can look like someone constantly looking to others for approval. 

Each of these trauma responses is an automatic response your brain has. 

These responses are out of one’s control often and out of their own awareness. 

Through trauma counseling or therapy and emotional healing these can be addressed to find various new strategies or coping mechanisms to manage when these responses happen after the trauma.

Trauma Counseling

 

Fawning and Recovery

In my professional experience, I have seen many clients who have struggled with fawning. 

These individuals require frequent validation, often avoid conflict, and often work to please/appease others around them to their own detriment. 

Like all trauma responses, this is an automatic process which can then create subconscious patterns in people’s lives where people continue this response into a strategy in their relationships. 

This strategy relates to clients engaging in this behavior across contexts and relationships. Often I work with couples where there is a level of codependency in the relationship where one or both partners engage in this dynamic, creating a difficult dynamic within the relationship. 

Whether individual or within a relationship, creating recovery around people pleasing is hard because of its origins. 

In my professional experience, it requires revisiting the origins of this pattern and how this strategy met the needs you had at the time. 

Being able to recognize that this strategy is no longer useful is necessary to work with your therapist to find new strategies to get your needs met. 

Another important piece of this is to recognize ways to feel safe. 

Recognizing that people who experience trauma do not feel safe, and remind yourself that finding safety is important. Safety can be emotional, physical, relational, and environmental. 

Depending on your experience, finding safety can be a necessity. 

There are so many things that can be useful to “people pleaser’s” in their recovery that the list can go on and on. 

The best advice I can give as a therapist is to find a therapist who you can trust and work through this with. 

That includes if you are in a relationship because whether you recognize it or not, your relationship(s) have been impacted by these experiences. 

Look for someone who specializes in trauma therapy, trauma work, or trauma counseling, these are the first steps towards emotional healing. 

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out LCAT’s Owner’s YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


couple talking

Couple Talking – The Quarantine Communication Crash Course

Couple Talking – The Quarantine Communication Crash Course

 

It is perfectly understandable that couple talking techniques would change, because when we find ourselves in new situations, we need to come up with new ways of coping and flourishing. 

I’ve noticed in meeting with clients that some couples are finding challenges communicating effectively, and as couples spend more time together than ever, couple talking changes! You can’t expect the same results from old ways of thinking and communicating! 

Just spend a moment considering how much your work routines have changed. 

We’re all on some sort of video conferencing software, balancing parenting or caretaking, health and exercise, financial stresses, and other tasks within the boundaries of our home. 

The coronavirus pandemic has forced all of us to make fast decisions about what’s vital and what’s not. What doesn’t work fails immediately, and effective results stick.

The same goes for couple talking techniques. 

Quarantining all day has been a crash course for many of my clients on verbal and non-verbal communication with their spouse or partner. 

The more you utilize effective strategies and techniques, the faster you’ll adapt to this new reality.

Let’s look on the bright side and imagine how much better we’ll know and communicate with our partners as things transition back to “normal” life. 

You can use your time now as a petri dish to experiment with some of these expert couple talking strategies.

couple talking

Dr. Gottman on Intimate Conversation

Dr. Gottman has been helping couples build bonds and communicate effectively for decades. One of his main strategies for building trust in a relationship is related to open communication free from any hint of defensiveness.

Your partner could be hiding something from you or masking destructive behaviors because they fear your reaction. It could also be one of the reasons they react strongly to anything that resembles criticism. 

For example, that sort of thing happens a lot when a spouse attempts to talk to their partner about what they see is a pornography problem. They move to strike back quickly to discourage any more questioning.

For many of us, our first inclination when our partner has a problem or talks about something challenging is to offer solutions. We want to immediately problem-solve their way out of it. We tell ourselves that’s how we’re projecting that we care about them.

Instead, though, Gottman says that before advice must come understanding

Intimate communication must include couples talking  that’s free from judgment.

One of the best ways to do this is by asking your partner open-ended follow-up questions. These invite them to speak more freely and get out whatever feelings they’ve got pent up inside. The next time your partner expresses frustration, anger, or even joy, ask them to talk more about how they feel and why. You’re on your way to build a more free and open communication platform.

 

Find Healing with Imago Relationship Therapy

Imago relationship therapy focuses on building intimate connections through healing. Fear of being truly known is one of the main obstacles my clients face. Most of us naturally maintain some semblance of a distance between our true selves and those around us. It may not be as simple as we don’t trust them. Often, we feel uncomfortable thinking or discussing our past or trauma we still live with.

Sharing intimate feelings, both fears and aspirations will help you as a couple build a love that’s more connected and intimate. Easier said than done, however. To feel comfortable opening or, you and your partner have to feel safe in your relationship.

Worries, concerns, doubts, and other emotions have to be communicated in a safe environment without risk of retribution.

The best couple talking happens in safe conversations. You can discover how to create safe conversations by talking to your partner about what makes them feel unsafe. Eliminate any conditions that could trigger anxiety as you speak. Sit closely to stay physically connected. Maintain eye contact. Offer validation often as your partner shares difficult emotions.

couple talking

Couple Talk with F-A-S-T

As a therapist, I help people understand how their emotions can hijack conversations. We all must understand how our messages are conveyed, especially to our intimate partners who we care deeply about.

In many couples, there’s often one partner who feels it’s appropriate to make their feelings subordinate to their partner’s to “make things work”. They are quick to apologize to try and smooth things over and withhold their true feelings because they don’t want to rock the boat.

What these people don’t realize is that they’re setting themselves up for long-term failure. That negatively impacts their partner and also their self-worth. If you find yourself sacrificing too much for the good of the relationship, you need to reexamine things.

For example, sometimes clients struggle with different sexual desires in their relationship. The higher-desire partner can feel frustrated and that they’re giving up something incredibly important because their partner doesn’t want to have sex as much as they do. Either that or they’re into kink or want to try some roleplaying.

Telling yourself that that’s just the way things are can only last so long. Eventually, the resentment will be so strong it will lead to collapse, infidelity, or some other disruption.

The point of learning how to speak about difficult topics is to find a way to meet in the middle for a solution that’s acceptable to both parties.

I recommend the FAST method of communication as a way to stay grounded when communicating with your spouse or partner. FAST stands for:

Fairness – Remember to be fair to yourself and your partner. Avoid criticism and judgment.

Apologies – Reserve apologies for when they’re required. Don’t apologize for feeling a certain way or being who you are. Apologize when you’ve done something wrong.

Stick to Your Values – There’s a compromise, and then there’s self-sacrifice. Too much sacrifice will make you feel resentful. Don’t cheat on your values to make something work or to make someone feel better.

Truth – Don’t exaggerate and don’t lie. Stay grounded and honest in your communication. Your partner will listen to what you have to say and know you are being sincere.

FAST is just one communication technique I recommend for couple talk. Several other methods can help you remember effective communication skills when conflict arises or it’s time to give your partner validation and praise.

I think we forget too often that we need effective communication when things are good just as much as when they are bad. How you speak to your partner when things are positive is like filling the well that you can draw on when stress is high and you’re having disagreements.

If there’s anything everyone needs right now during this troubling time it’s more praise and validation. These are simple things you can do to build your partner up and create stronger bonds in your intimate relationship.

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


couples therapy video option

Uncovering Couples Therapy Video Options

Uncovering Couples Therapy Video Options

 

Have you tried couples therapy video options yet due to the pandemic? 

If you have tried a couples therapy video option, make sure you let us know your experience. 

When was the last time you had someone trained to listen, to reflect, and to guide you through communication issues?

Opening up and working through problems is a freeing process that, unfortunately, too few couples know.

The initial meeting with a therapist is the hardest part. 

Once you make an appointment, and then begin to fill out the intake paperwork, you start a journey of exploration and healing that often is not possible alone. 

Some people, for several reasons, are hesitant to meet and talk with therapists.

Therapists are responding to client concerns and increasing their outreach by making therapy video sessions available to everyone who is not at risk of harming themselves or others.  

Now, practices around the country, and the world, are performing couples therapy video sessions as the norm. 

They’ll meet with you in the privacy of your home.

There’s a lot to consider when you’re looking for a therapist or thinking about starting sessions. Video conference capability is just one more piece of the puzzle. 

Here we discuss some of the main benefits of couples therapy video sessions and why they may work for you: 

  • Convenient and simple
  • Flexible payments
  • Sometimes covered by insurance
  • Who doesn’t want to improve their love?
  • Growing leaps and bounds in weeks

 

After 4 weeks, one client reported:

“I wish I didn’t wait to start therapy so late! I'm not going to lie, I wouldn't have put off therapy for so long if I had realized all the discoveries along the way. Not just myself but also a different window into my partner’s inner world. I've very much so appreciated the way that the therapeutic relationship has been built. It was essentially everything I thought it wouldn't be and I feel like I've been making leaps and bounds in my own inner world and starting to show to the rest of the world.”

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


What is Narcissism

What is Narcissism?

What is Narcissism?

 

“What is narcissism” seems to be a buzzword lately around Life Coaching and Therapy and on the internet. 

Having and or knowing someone who is a narcissist is complicated, confusing, and at times overwhelming. 

Within my clinical practice, I work with those who have been impacted by narcissists or those who identify as narcissists. 

Today, I will try to answer the question “what is narcissism” and bring some clarity. 

According to GoodTherapy (2019), narcissism is “excessive self-involvement that causes a person to ignore the needs of others.” 

Even though we may behave in a self-involved manner, when we are doing it chronically and at the expense of others without accountability, that is when it becomes problematic. 

 

GoodTherapy (2019) states that clear indicators of narcissism are: 

  • incredibly self-focused
  • difficulty empathizing with others
  • Entitlement
  • attention seeking behavior
  • a focus on the narrative of others, need for admiration or affirmations
  • difficulty in relationships
  • inability to take responsibility for their actions or behavior
  • unable to tolerate criticism, and 
  • seeking approval from others (GoodTherapy, 2019). 

 

When asking “what is narcissism,” I think it is important to consider there is a spectrum of this ranging from those who have narcissistic tendencies and someone who has an extreme form of narcissism that is a “personality disorder.” 

To some degree, we all have parts of us that demonstrate self-serving behaviors, yet that does not mean you are engaging in narcissistic behavior or abuse. 

 

Narcissism: A Family Pattern

Often people who are narcissists are raised in a narcissistic environment. 

Their family of origin or people integral in their lives are also narcissistic. 

It may appear to be an intergenerational pattern - so that if you look at the person who is acting like a  narcissist, you will find their close family members demonstrating these same qualities. 

People raised by narcissistic caregivers often struggle with questioning their own reality and emotions. 

This constant invalidation creates significant struggles for them as a child and eventual adult as they grow up to have relationships within the community. 

Being raised in an environment that is unpredictable where caregivers may show public affection and are distant creates issues in attachment. 

This is particularly challenging for children as they learn attachment (which sets the road map for their relationships moving forward) with their caregivers. 

Focusing on individual needs rather than that of the family or the child creates a system of modeling this behavior, elevating the “narcissistic part” over the “collaborative” or “empathetic” part(s). 

Thus creating another generation that may struggle with narcissism. 

This is not to say “it's my parents’ fault” or to blame someone else (that can be a narcissistic trait). 

The point is to recognize that this pattern probably began generations ago. 

Often these behaviors are strategies to get a need met or survive trauma. 

Behaviors are passed down from generation to generation until someone decides to change them. 

As a systemic therapist, this makes sense. 

We become and act on what we know. 

If we are not intentionally aware of the processes that we learned, we will repeat them. 

As someone who specializes in trauma, I often see my clients regress into narcissistic tendencies while in “trauma spirals.” 

To be clear, regardless of if you are a narcissist or acting as a narcissist due stress or trauma… it does not justify acting abusively, harmfully, or with disregard to the impact on those around you. 

If you are engaging in narcissistic behavior, you are likely engaging in some abusive patterns. I repeat, if you are engaging in narcissistic patterns of behavior, regardless of the reason, you may be engaging in abusive patterns as well. 

 

Can the Cycle be Broken?

In one word, absolutely. 

Building insight and awareness with the narcissistic part of you is a skill we teach at LCAT.

If we are looking at ourselves as made up of various aspects (see Inner Aspects model by Francesca Gentille), we can acknowledge and see that we all have parts of us that are narcissistic. 

If we are able to look at that part of us, see that part of us, and work with that part of us we are capable of disrupting the pattern. 

Acknowledging that we are engaging in these patterns, being committed to doing things differently, and showing up to do the work allows for growth to happen. 

The cycle cannot and will not be broken if individuals are not able to see their part, take accountability, and be willing to do the work though. 

If your narcissistic part is the part that dominates your person, it may be difficult to do this because that part of you will not want to take responsibility.

Our role would be to help you gently and tenderly acknowledge that you are engaging in destructive, toxic, and or abusive behaviors. 

Then, we would help give you the pieces to put your life back as you see fit. 

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


Best Couples Therapy Near Me

Best Couples Therapy Near Me 

Best Couples Therapy Near Me 

 

When people type these words "best couples therapy near me" into their Google search field, they are often looking for a therapist near their home to help them out. 

Usually, those typing “best couples therapy near me” are typically at the stage in their relationship where things are “broken” and they are wondering what to do about it. 

Online couple counseling

Fairytales of high-school sweethearts who are so loving, yet the thought of touching their partner makes their skin crawl. 

They are often searching for ways to communicate with their partner in a more effective way and to see results in the moment instead of months later. 

Adults often want to know how to stop fighting and how to start communicating more effectively. They also want to have the joy they used to feel in their partnership.

Couples therapy can be emotionally intense. 

There’s this huge outpouring feeling, whether it be anger, love, regret, or hope. 

You might have some homework or things to work on with your partner or spouse until the next time you meet with your therapist.

You leave with high expectations and then life gets in the way. Sometimes, it is hard to remember all the things that worked as well as the issues you want to bring up in the next session. 

Individuals, and couples, come into our office because they realize they aren’t having the type of romance that they imagined, nor are they experiencing the degree of connection that they desire. 

If couples like what they see in the Google snippet or ad that describes our couples therapy practice, Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT), then we encourage you to click on the link and go to the website at www.lifecoachingandtherapy.com

One of the main reasons people may choose to visit the LCAT site is the 5-star reviews our clients post about us on Google. 

Best Couples Therapy Near Me

I am so grateful for each and every client that we have had, the ones we currently have, and the ones we have yet to meet. 

When clients get the sexual satisfaction they long for, when couples begin to have ease in communication, and when they begin to learn ways to improve connection in their partnerships, the results just speak for themselves.

What makes a couples therapy practice the best? 

The results! Sense of safety. A long assessment period. Take at least 4 sessions to see if you are a match!

Many individuals, for example, are afraid to be honest with their romantic partner.

A couples therapy practice that is open about their strategies, results, and that gives you the option of having homework is definitely a good sign that it is the best. 

If you believe that going to couples therapy is a sign of failure, think again!  

Couples therapy involves intellectual, physical, emotional, and spiritual perspectives, and sexual connection, which can make it incredibly complex. 

Being comfortable enough to ask your partner specific questions about what they need or like is essential to having great results as a couples therapy practice!

One of the first things people do when they visit the site is view the Therapy Team bios. You will see that there are a variety of clinicians with different specialities, including couples therapy, anxiety, depression, emotion regulation, and distress tolerance. 

Our team is amazing! We work in the Inner Aspects Counseling Model of therapy, and thus far, the results have been compelling.

Sometimes, it is imperative for couples therapy to focus on using fantasy and the illusion of variety for sexual satisfaction in long-term romantic relationships. 

At times, the therapist can act as a creator and innovator to help rediscover interests and help the couple create a relationship framework for a better future. 

For example, one technique couples therapists use is to encourage intimacy through erotic writing, cuddling, date nights, sexual acts and gift giving.

Our West Hartford staff consists of 7 licensed therapists – specializing in communication, repairing from betrayal, organizing relationship agreements, and setting you up for more intimate pleasure! 

Best Couples Therapy Near Me

That means all of our therapists have gone to graduate school, taken an exam, been licensed by the state, did 1000+ more clinical hours, more supervision, and have spent probably over $250,000 each on their tuition at this point. 

Because we know not everyone can afford our licensed therapists, we are in the process of training coaches to begin to get you results at a lower price. If you are interested in learning more about becoming an Inner Aspects Model Coach, let us know! 

When clients put in effort, so do we. 

It is as if you have your own personal couples therapy team in your pocket, because your clinician is just a text away. 

The great thing about technology is that it is advanced and secure enough to enable LCAT therapists to hold therapy sessions online - either through chats, text, or videos. 

This has a lot of mental health benefits, including being able to help clients during this challenging time of home quarantine.  

 

The Benefits of Online Psychotherapy are:

 

  • Flexible scheduling options and payment
  • Faster results and immediate interventions
  • Sometimes paid for by insurance companies
  • Request to record session to refer back to it if you would like
  • You can have complete discretion in your care 

 

 

It’s funny, because really, now with the online psychotherapy, the search phrase "best couples therapy near me" doesn't even have to include the "near me" any more.”

Telehealth is global now! 

 

Why does LCAT get consistent 5 star reviews from customers on Google?

Best Couples Therapy Near MeWe strive to provide an identity-affirming environment to all.

If you aren’t satisfied, we will send you to someone who can help. 

And, if we believe we can help you, our team sensitively handles your presenting concerns. 

At Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) we help you get the life you want, and the results you desire related to passion, connection, and growth. Through our flexible, multi-technique approach (DBT, CBT, EMDR) and pleasure skills training (tantra, the science of sex, and sensate focus techniques), we transform our clients lives!

Please learn more about how Life Coaching & Therapy (LCAT) can help improve your relationship and ignite your sex life at What We Do. Call or text us at 203-733-9600, or make an appointment.

 


healing trauma

Is Healing Trauma Possible? A New Normal in the Age of COVID

Is Healing Trauma Possible? A New Normal in the Age of COVID

 

COVID-19 has taken the world by storm creating a system of stress, chaos, and trauma. 

As mental health professionals, our goal is to help our clients in healing trauma, yet what happens when there is systemic trauma? 

Many are wondering how we are going to heal from this trauma, and how will we recover as individuals, families, relationships, communities, as a nation, and as a world?

I have discussed systemic trauma in terms of oppression of marginalized populations, yet this pandemic is causing waves of trauma reverberating throughout the world. 

healing trauma

To be clear, marginalized populations have been hit hardest in terms of this pandemic. According to data from the State of Connecticut online, COVID-19 infection rate for the black population and the hispanic population is double the infection rate for the white population.

Yet the resources are still not going to the vulnerable communities. 

Loved ones are not seeing one another, people are isolated, people are dying, people are living in fear. It is CLEAR that the broader system has been impacted.

The level of uncertainty in the world around us can become overwhelming.

As a mental health professional, I see so many around me personally and professionally struggling in the face of this pandemic and they all seem to want to begin healing the trauma, even though we are in it. 

As families are trying to create a new “normal” in the face of this global, systemic trauma, some families are planning funerals. 

 

Healing Trauma

Unfortunately, we do not know the long term effects of this on individuals, communities, and broader systems. 

What we do know is that these impacts will be great and we will need more support… probably emotionally, intellectually, somatically, and specifically around healing trauma. 

The veil has been lifted in our communities, our political system, and the world. 

Now as a community, we urge those that can to work together to create a world that is better than when this began. 

 

What can you do to help, if you are able? 

  • Begin to notice your privilege. 
    • Not everyone has the same resources or safety that you do. 
    • Some people cannot afford food. 
    • When you say “we are all going to be fine,” realize that that isn’t true for everyone. We have seen countless lives already impacted in mental health. 
  • Realize that you impact others 
  • Take care of yourself - shower, feed yourself, socially distance, etc.
  • Sew some masks for people that you know are struggling with supplies. 
  • Cook meals for those who are in need. 

 

We cannot unsee the atrocities and lives lost. 

We cannot unsee how marginalized communities were hit harder than privileged communities.

We cannot unsee the value of mental health, the value of health care, the value of our communities.

My hope is that we can come together as a community, and work towards healing trauma together to address what we know more than ever to be true… Can we create a new normal together?

At Life Coaching and Therapy, LLC we are ready to collaborate with you!

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


Female Masturbation - Owning Pleasure with Virtual Erotic Recess

Female Masturbation - Owning Pleasure with Virtual Erotic Recess

 

In November 2019, I wrote about my first time attending Betty Dodson’s Bodysex weekend - a weekend centered on female masturbation. 

Can you imagine female masturbation occurring online for pleasure, instead of for pornography? 

Coronavirus created a space where that was possible! Globally! 

 

Then Coronavirus Hit

It’s been months since my Bodysex experience, and naturally, I was aching for more; yet Betty and Carlin’s BodySex was sold out the Goop episode, BodySex 2020 would be sold out… 

All of their workshops are done in person. 

The effect of showing your genitals and orgasming in front of people you just met is incredibly delicious and empowering; so much so that most attendees report it to be “life changing.” 

Coronavirus threw a wrench into the plans of pleasure though. 

All of BodySex workshops were canceled to meet social distancing requirements. As I would imagine Betty and Carlin must have been bummed. However, within a couple weeks, the news came forward that Erotic Recess would be moving forward… on Zoom!

Yes, you read that right. Female masturbation for pleasure on Zoom. 

We would be part of piloting a new program of sexual pleasure from our own homes. 

Imagine a bunch of women on the same screen - totally nude - exploring and celebrating their own body together! 

I was intrigued to be a part of seeing if this experiment would “work” in the pandemic. 

Would the virtual Erotic Recess seminar hold a candle to the in-person BodySex that included female masturbation?

 

How Did It Go? 

Being a part of a virtual seminar is obviously different from meeting in person. 

Sitting in a circle with attendees facilitates a natural interaction and conversation flow. 

You take turns by… going around the circle. 

It’s also easier to read people’s moods when you can feel their energy up close.

Still, I was just excited that technology has enabled us to do this! 

After all, even in the face of a pandemic, pleasure must go on...

We started with a bit of boundary setting to begin! 

That happens in every seminar anyway, and it’s especially important over webcams. 

Carlin held a sacred space and was clear about no penises in the circle!

 

Female Masturbation For Global Healing

Erotic Recess leaves no room for avoidance or shame. 

We embrace our bodies, own our pleasure, and celebrate our vulvas for the incredible gift they are! As the workshop progressed, we talked about orgasms and masturbated in front of our computers, focused totally on pleasure and the solidarity of connection. 

It was great seeing how so many women experience and approach orgasm so differently. All of us better understand that there is no “right” way to be in pleasure. All of us realize that there is no “one” camera angle that works for all adult female bodies and movement abilities. 

 

My Virtual Female Masturbation Takeaways

Here are some of my main takeaways:

  • Ownership is SO important - During the workshop, attendees are discouraged as much as possible from talking about how others have affected their sexuality. The emphasis is on owning your eroticism. You get to decide that you deserve pleasure and bask in its glory!
  • The Right Tool Helps - millions of women will celebrate Betty Dodson for the rest of their lives to thank her for making the vibrator mainstream. Due to Carlin Ross and the future of BodySex, the pleasure continues… virtually! 
  • Sex tools are a godsend for women, particularly those who struggle to orgasm. My husband recently bought me the Le Wand Feel My Power Special Edition. 
  • I have to say, along with lubing up and Betty’s Barbell, it works wonders! 
  • Strategize with different toys and options until you find the one for you.
  • Once again... pleasure is gorgeous and healing! I have seen thousands of nude bodies at this point, and I just want to say that during female masturbation, most bodies have similar responses, and have sounds of joy.  Instead of shaming self-touch, celebrate it. This process works if you work it.

 

Virtual Erotic Recess Works

In the end, even Coronavirus could not stop our pleasure.

The 16+ women who have shared their screens alongside me have adapted to our new reality, and it didn’t dampen the experience. Each of us came away refreshed and excited to feel more pleasure and be free with our bodies. As Betty always says, “Better orgasms, better world”.

I am so grateful that I get to do this for a living! Erotic Recess is a wonderful reminder to me of how impactful sex therapy is and how many women can change their lives, not just with intimacy, through this process. It’s an incredible experience and I’m moved every time to be a part of it.

If you’re interested in Betty Dodson seminars like Bodysex, check them out now! You’ll be glad you gave it a try.

As some of you may know, pleasure is healing and female masturbation is often the key to unleash the power within. 

We grow through pain and pleasure, usually when we are uncomfortable. 

During this time of a global pandemic, we use female masturbation and self-pleasure during the sexual stimulation process to increase the feel-good hormones in your body! 

Whether or not you reach the release of orgasm, the bodily function that sometimes occurs during sexual interaction, isn’t the goal. The purpose is to connect with you. 

Follow the advice of Dr. Betty Dodson, the Queen of Female Masturbation, by checking out her NYT article. 

Female masturbationYou Are Your Safest Sex Partner: Betty Dodson Wants to Help

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

LCAT provides video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


online couple counseling

Therapy on Retainer Vs. Onsite Couples Work

Therapy on Retainer Vs. Onsite Couples Work

 

For decades, therapy has been conducted on comfortable rooms on couches with pillows and soothing colors to help you relax. Face-to-face therapy works. It’s helped millions of people overcome significant roadblocks to their happiness and fulfillment.

As therapists, we rely on personal sessions immensely. We do our best to read body language, facial expressions, mood, and other non-verbal cues. Our training helps us cut through the automatic statements and responses we all speak unconsciously, which often obfuscate underlying pain or trauma.

If you’ve ever spoken to your therapist on the phone, you know it’s not the same as being there in person. Therapy done over the phone can still be good, but it’s just…different.

Meeting onsite with your therapist is always the way to go, but it’s not always possible. People are limited by financial reasons, distance, and busy work schedules that stop you from seeing your therapist as much as you’d like.

Thankfully, therapists are using technology to make it easier for you. Many clients hire therapists on retainer for shorter, more regular interactions that supplement face-to-face sessions.

Online couple counseling 

Onsite Couples Counseling 

Some couples I see are so far down a path that they can’t even see where they began anymore. The way we live every day becomes a habit. It can be hard to step outside of ourselves and see how we’ve created the lives we have.

When couples come in, it’s a nuanced process of removing layers. It may require working through years of resentment about imbalances in a relationship. We may have to dig a bit into what’s driving sexual inhibitions. It’s not usually easy, but therapy work for couples struggling can be extremely healing and beneficial to relationships.

We all carry baggage related to our family and place of origin. Our childhood experiences have an outsized impact on who we become. Bullying, shame, trauma and other things that happened to us when we were kids still influence who we are today. Systems and the way we process things runs deep.

Couples therapy is often emotionally intense. There’s this huge outpouring feeling, whether it be anger, love, regret, or hope. You might have some homework or things to work on with your partner or spouse until the next time you meet with your therapist.

You leave with high expectations and then life gets in the way. It might be a week, two, or even longer until you see your therapist again. Unless you’re taking copious notes, it’s hard to remember all the things that worked as well as the issues you want to bring up in the next session. It’s one of the main limitations of in-person therapy.

 

Is Online Couples Counseling for You? Get a Therapist on Retainer!

Online couples counseling, which I like to call “therapy on retainer” is an option many therapists at Life Coaching and Therapy offer today.

Essentially, online couples counseling gives you more regular access to your therapist, though your interactions will be shorter and done over text or phone.

It’s not a replacement for ongoing face-to-face counseling. It most likely is not covered by insurance.

However, just like using “FaceTime” and other video technology helped make therapy better, therapy on retainer uses texting, email, and phone to supplement ongoing counseling.

Here are some of the main benefits of therapy on retainer and why you should consider it:

 

Ongoing Contact

 

The bottom line is you get more access to your therapist. It’s not deep access, but for people who need more follow-up, it’s a great benefit. For example, if you and your spouse get into an argument or are “stuck”, you can reach out to your therapist for help.

Likewise, you can celebrate successes as they happen instead of waiting a week or longer to go over it with your therapist. This can help reinforce positive behavior and communication that will help make it a habit faster.

In emergencies or times of crisis, it’s also a huge comfort to know you can talk to your therapist and get counseling without having to schedule an appointment or leave work.

 

It Works for Couples

Getting into your therapist by yourself can be difficult. Juggling work, school, kids, dinner, and whatever else is on your plate is hard! With your spouse or partner, it’s even more challenging.

Using online couples counseling or therapy on retainer makes it easier for you and your partner to engage with your therapist regularly. You can conference call or group text, so everyone’s opinion is shared and heard. There’s no repeating or going over what you said in your last session if your partner couldn’t make it.

With texting and other forms of communication, both partners can chime in on what works and what needs to be addressed when you’re all physically together again. It helps remove nuance that so often gets in the way.

online couples therapy 

Regular Follow Up Creates Daily Habits

The more follow up you build into your life, the better. As therapists, we do our bests to create personalized plans to help you become what you want or deal with the things that are holding you back.

When follow up happens on a weekly or biweekly basis in counseling sessions, that’s great! When it can be done daily, that’s even better.

We are all creatures of habit. The things we do well and don’t do so well, over time, become habits. With therapy on retainer, there can be small interactions throughout the week that keep you on your game. You can course-correct as you come across issues as they arise.

 

Try a Mix and Stick with What Works

Trying therapy on retainer is an excellent add-on to traditional counseling. If you’ve never done it before, talk to your therapist about whether they offer it as an option. It could be the more regular connection you need to see real improvement in intimacy, communication, or whatever else you’re working on.

A good therapist will use the more regular dialogue to help you form behaviors that help you accomplish your goals. They’ll also be there in times of need. Reaction to a text or call my not be immediate if they’re meeting with someone else but knowing you don’t have to wait a week or more to speak to your therapist is a great comfort.

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer.

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.