One of the first questions I ask a new client..... what is your opinion about medication, and what are your past experiences with medication? Often, clients are open to the idea of pursuing medication to address their symptoms and trust my clinical judgement when referring for medication management. Some clients have bad experiences with medication and let me know that they are reluctant to try again.
Monet David Blog
Counselor Lafayette, La
Picture it—I stand before you, perfect erect posture, an ornate hat placed upon my head and bedecked in some sort of religious garb. I beckon you to come forth and hear my wise words and you are hypnotized by the image before you. The atmosphere mimics the final scene of that one movie where Bill Murray whispers into Scarlett Johansson’s ear and the audience is none the wiser but desperately wishes they were. This time you get to be privy to information. I gently say to you, “Stop being the therapist friend. It’s not necessary. Just be, like, a good supportive friend.”
The therapeutic relationship is such a fascinating concept to me. I invite you, as my client, to join me, your therapist, in an intimate, vulnerable space with clear set boundaries. It seems like for many clients this is a novel experience. They are typically seeking counseling services to address interpersonal conflicts wrought with enmeshment and boundary violations. In these contexts, therapy can serve as a model for what positive, open relationships can look like in one’s life.
The COVID-19 pandemic really turned the mental health world on its head. Not only have rates of mental health issues increased, but therapy completely revamped itself to accommodate for the risks involved in contact between clinician and client. Now that the world is settling a bit, we have had some time to reflect back on the last two years and to explore the research about teletherapy.
Can we talk about gender? I mean, it’s all that’s talked about these days and so it’s not a stretch to ask, but what if we really talked about it? Let’s say your child, your daughter in this example, comes to you and says, “Mom (or Dad or Grandma, you get the picture), I’m not a girl.” How do you react? What does this mean for you? Your family? Is your world turned upside down? It’s a lot to take in. Especially if you haven’t considered what gender means to you. So, let’s do that now.
Sex is something that most of us participate in, gain enjoyment from, and even utilize to create families. It’s something that people have shamed, derided, and made out to be a disgusting act (usually stemming from traumatic experiences, misinformation or implicit negative messaging). So I am choosing to talk about sex openly in my next few blogs--which makes me pretty radical. Did you know that Louisiana does not require instruction in sexual health education at any grade level but does allow sexual health education to be taught in grades 7th –12th?
When I am in my office, I am guided by what I needed when I was younger. I needed a therapist that was empathic, funny, nonjudgmental and above all else someone who simply listens. It’s important that every client I work with feels heard and validated.