“Shame, without a doubt, is the biggest barrier to people seeking care. We can overcome that.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist? What inspired you to choose this profession?
New York is a highly competitive, stressful place to work. It’s easy to seek relief by using alcohol or drugs or overeating, and feelings like anxiety, depression, loneliness, and anger are incredibly common. I learned this from first hand experience. Fortunately, I was able to find therapists and counselors to support and guide my recovery. I was inspired by their efforts and decided to follow in their path.
What would you want someone to know about working with you?
Choosing the right therapist can feel like an overwhelming task. I make myself available for a free 15-minute phone call so you can ask questions and get a sense of my personality and qualifications. I’ll encourage potential clients to speak with two or three therapists, or as many as it takes, to find someone who makes you feel comfortable and can inspire confidence. When working together, we’ll focus on getting to the root of the problem. Mental health issues like addiction and anxiety are symptoms of a problem, not the problem itself. Together, we’ll dig deeper to figure out what’s going on underneath the surface.
How does collaboration with other providers play into your work?
I have never encountered a client who suffered from too much support. Collaboration with other providers is a cornerstone of my approach. I welcome the opportunity to work with any other providers you are seeing, and encourage clients recovering from addiction to continue participating in support groups or 12-step programs.
What do you think is the biggest barrier today for people seeking care?
Shame, without a doubt, is the biggest barrier to people seeking care. Even if we overcome the shame of substance abuse, addictive relationships, or depression, we may still suffer from shame over our appearance, our finances, and our education. Shame is a basic emotion that’s part of being human, but shame holds us back from getting help. Most clients feel their sense of shame reduced by the end of their first session.
How do you work with clients who are struggling with addiction?
I work with clients who are transitioning from inpatient programs to outpatient programs, inpatient programs back to daily life, and everything in between. I also run outpatient support groups for professionals who are in recovery. My goal is to ensure that you have the best, most effective support network for you, whatever that may look like.
“I have never encountered a client who suffered from too much support. Collaboration with other providers is a cornerstone of my approach.”
Interested in speaking with Melanie?