There is something special about the therapeutic relationship. Many people consider psychotherapy, but hesitate to take the first step. You might think, How can I move on in life when I feel so overwhelmed? Will this person actually understand my suffering? Am I worth being cared about? Will these feelings ever change? These are definitely frightening thoughts! Often it's easier to move past them in the presence of a compassionate, empathetic person. Therapy can help you develop a new and broader sense of yourself, your life, and your future. Individual therapy may include work with dreams or artwork, depending on your personal needs and inclinations.
In addition to depression, anxiety, and trauma, here are a few unique types of struggles that I am particularly good at helping with:
• People who feel “forever alone” and have difficulty forming friendships as adults
• Midlife or quarter-life career changes
• Moving on after divorce or major break-up
• Social anxiety in particular situations
• Placing aging parents into a retirement home
• Loss of a beloved pet
I provide counseling for all types of couples, including the LBGTQ population. Premarital counseling is also available, and this type of counseling is often a good investment for couples preparing to move in together. I also frequently work with those in nontraditional relationships, whether individually or as a couple. I am kink-aware and sensitive to the issues faced by those living nontraditional lifestyles.
Lauren Gardner, LPC, Ph.D.
Photo: Briana Woods, 2015-2016. Umstead Park, Raleigh NC
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via Psychology Today.