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I am using this space to share thoughts, from time to time, that come from my clinical work and reading.  I hope this is helpful for you.

SURVIVING A SUICIDE

The numbers are shocking and sad: some 200,000 people in the United States annually lose a loved one to suicide (according to the AAS). I have worked with a number of people who have been affected by suicide. They often come in with conflicting feelings: mourning, grief, rage and guilt. Therapy can be a lifeline for people who survive the suicide of a loved one.  A helpful resource is The Samaritans of New York (212-673-3000) which offers free of charge support groups for survivors of suicide.

July, 2017

Posted on Thursday, July 6, 2017 at 05:34PM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off

MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT PSYCHOANALYSIS

Psychoanalysis has a bad reputation these days. It's treated as some sort of boogeyman: the cold, withholding analyst sitting silently behind the patient who is floundering on the couch. In fact, in terms of talk therapies, psychoanalysis offers a unique opportunity to delve deeply into what makes us tick, and to understand why we can end up doing things or being with people who aren't good for us. Analysis helps us bring buried feelings and thoughts to the surface. It also helps us see how we can erroneously project experiences from our childhood onto current relationships. One of the best books I know that outlines current analytic thinking is Owen Renick's Practical Psychoanalysis for Therapists and Patients. Through various case studies, Renick demonstrates how he actively listens to and participates in his patients' healing processes. The book is a joy to read and goes a long way in correcting any misconceptions about what psychoanalysis has to offer today.

June, 2017

Posted on Thursday, June 1, 2017 at 08:47AM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off

ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

"There aren't any meetings with people like me."
"All that religious stuff turns me off."
"I hate walking into a room full of strangers."
"Are you kidding, I can just stop drinking on my own."

These are just a few of the protests I've heard when I suggest A.A. to people with drinking problems. The fact is though, that no matter what real shortcomings A.A. might have, it usually provides the best support for getting and staying sober. The meetings are important, as well as sharing at meetings, having a sponsor, and keeping a handy list of members who you can call, and --- particularly important --- after the meeting joining other members for informal coffee sessions. It's not easy to stop drinking: but it's a lot easier to do when you have the safety net of the A.A. community surrounding you.

April, 2017

Posted on Monday, April 3, 2017 at 09:48AM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off