Category Archive: Empathy

Sep 04

What IS Therapy, Anyway? Part 1

What goes on in a therapist’s office is a mystery to many who have never pursued psychotherapy. First-timers are often nervous and uncertain, not knowing what to expect. A common misconception is that therapy is some sort of cathartic, secular confessional, or that the therapist will magically “fix” the client—cure depression, anxiety, grief, social isolation, …

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Aug 17

The Poignant Dichotomy of Old Age

Every Thursday, my husband and I drive 10 minutes to my mother-in-law’s well-appointed retirement community to have dinner with her at 4:30. On those days, we have to make sure to skip lunch so we can be hungry at an odd time of day. Although the helpings are small—suitable for the elderly residents’ diminished appetites—the …

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Apr 02

Armadillo

Armadillo By Elizabeth O’Brien, LPC-S I was already feeling fragile, having slept fitfully, rattled by disturbing dreams. Some part of me couldn’t shake a feeling of dread. I forced myself into my morning ritual, firing up my IPad, New York Times app, coffee by my side. The top story hit me in the face: a …

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Mar 31

The Pets We Love—and Mourn

By Elizabeth O’Brien, LPC   Among the clients I see are those grieving the loss of a pet. In fact, the other day, I received a call from my veterinarian asking that I drop off more of my business cards. Ours is a particularly dog-friendly neighborhood, featuring dozens of wild Greenbelt trails. It might sound …

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Dec 10

‘Tis the Season

‘Tis the Season By Elizabeth O’Brien, LPC The holidays are fraught with angst. Since late October, clients have been coming in with anxiety over upcoming family visits, tales of previous drama or longtime estrangements, and sadness over those who are no longer here. Many are financially strapped and feel pressure about spending money they don’t …

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