Tag: Advice

3 Most Important Factors To Consider In Choosing a Therapist

Choosing a therapist was a log harder than I expected.  There were a lot of options.
 
I never wanted to go to therapy.  
 
At all!
 
Then one day I realized that I was hurting the people I loved and I couldn’t stop. So I went.  
 
My first therapist was amazing.  Later I would learn, both personally and professionally, that they’re not all that way.   
 
So I understand the difficulties of choosing a therapist.  I can relate to the pain, the fear, and finally having the need to reach out to a professional.  Whether you choose me or someone else, I want to support you in your journey toward finding a someone who can help. 
 
Over the years I’ve taught therapists in graduate school as well as hired and fired them as a director. Some of them are…  better than others.  Here are some suggestions that I hope prove helpful:
 
1. Connection matters: 
Find someone you trust. You should feel at ease in their presence and have a sense of their competence. You should know, without a doubt, that they’ll be able to keep everything you say in complete confidence.
 
2. Specialization matters: 
Postgraduate training and certifications cost time and money. The top clinicians I’ve seen work are willing to invest in continuing education to help their patients. 
 
3. Personal experience matters:
Time and time again, this has proven to be THE MOST important factor in clinical excellence.  Find someone who has done their own therapy. Master therapist Carl Jung said to his students, “you cannot see in others what you cannot see in yourself.” The clinician you working with is much more likely to be able to guide you through things that he or she has gone through themselves. Many clinicians don’t believe in extensive personal disclosure, but at the very least finding out if they’ve gone through their own therapy is a step in the right direction.
 
These guidelines will prove a step in the right direction in terms of finding a clinician who can be of maximum service in your journey.  I wish you the best!

Q: Why do I go to sleep after I use meth?

I’ve been working in substance-abuse counseling as a therapist for 10+ years. During that time I’ve encountered several patients who discovered that meth actually calms them down.

My experience regarding this is that the patients probably have biological ADHD.

In my experience, there is ADHD related to trauma and ADHD related to biology. Note that the two are not mutually exclusive.

Two forms of ADHD

When a person has trauma dissociation helps to protect them. If the trauma is chronic and repeated often times the dissociative mechanisms just remain “on”. People with this pattern will report feeling a bit more clumsy than their peers and they might appear spacey and distracted. They’ll sometimes also experience a nagging sense of loneliness.  This loneliness only goes away if they’re participating in some sort of intense activity or if they’re extremely busy.

People with the biological variety of ADHD don’t get enough blood flow to the front of their brain. The part of the front is called the neocortex.  It’s in charge of “executive functioning”. That means it’s responsible for hitting the brakes when you have impulses to do things that are socially unacceptable, dangerous or both 🙂

Why meth makes you sleepy:

Taking methamphetamine increases the blood flow throughout the body, but particularly to the neocortex. Suddenly, the brakes are able to kick on and your body says “hey, let’s take a nap.” Everybody else is taking apart their toasters and all the sudden you can’t stay awake. 

In the field in which I work we call this “being your own pharmacist.” Meeting with a psychiatrist who can prescribe time-release stimulants would probably be helpful. Besides the obvious, consistenly medicating biolocial ADHD might be quite helpful with addressing the things that make you want to use meth in the first place.  

Not to mention the fact that your meth dealer probably doesn’t have the same quality control standards as a pharmacuetical company. 🙂

For counseling and therapy related to trauma and/or meth addiction, please feel free to contact me using the form below:

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