Monet David Blog
When the subject of sex comes up in session it is often in hushed whispers with eyes diverted to the ground. People (adults usually) are admitting out loud, sometimes for the first time ever, a part of themselves they have never had the chance to be vulnerable about or even explore in depth. Our sexuality is just as much a part of us as any other aspect of identity, but it is often unattended and undeveloped. Partly because we live in an erotophobic society and partly because we don’t truly ever receive quality, comprehensive sex education. So, what does that mean for us?
One of the beautiful things about therapy is the possibility it possesses. I have had the pleasure of witnessing growth right before my eyes as folks come to understand themselves on a deeper level. I am fortunate enough to have highly motivated clients who show up consistently, ready to hit the ground running and offer me the chance to point out incongruencies or patterns of behavior that can help them become better versions of themselves. But I have a secret to share with you—sometimes just showing up to session isn’t enough.
The frequency with which anxiety exists in our bodies can only be described as frenetic and unrelenting. A hive of bees when it is at its worst. An amalgamation of symptoms—elevated heart rate, dilated pupils, shortness of breath, tensed muscles. It’s no wonder those of us burdened with anxiety move quickly—from one task to another, constantly planning and waiting for the next crisis we will inevitably overthink. It’s taxing both emotionally and physically. To overcome such intense symptoms feels impossible. But what if it isn’t?
Day after day I hear from clients an innate desire to connect with other people. To make new friends. To have novel experiences. My young adult clients struggle to make friends because their time in college was cut short due to the pandemic. My adult clients struggle to meet new people because work takes up so much of their time. My adolescent clients are limited in what they can do with their parent’s permission. So, all in all, it’s gotten to be very lonely these last few years. So, when a client begins to lament about their needs not being met I share with them this freshly curated listed of activities you can do in Acadiana!
I’m back again with my boundary stuff. If you have followed me on this journey of understanding the significance of setting boundaries both personally and professionally, then wait till you get a load of this blog—internal boundaries. Each time I have mentioned this concept in session clients look at me like I have sprouted a third eye. Internal boundaries? Never heard of her. And quite frankly, I hadn’t either until very recently when my mentor took a minute to inform me! So, full disclosure, this mental health professional is right here with you on this part of the journey.
In this late stage capitalist hellscape, you will often hear, “We’re family here!” Which should serve as a giant red flag. Why, you ask? Because work is work. You are there to perform tasks and uphold responsibilities laid forth when you agreed to take the position and really, no more.
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.
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 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.