MSocSc (Clin. Psyc.) UKZN
Reg. No.: PS0116831 Practice No.: 010482285
I offer psychotherapy to adolescents and adults on an individual, couples and family basis, in Clarendon Pietermaritzburg.
I am trained in a range of modalities to help individuals cope with various difficulties – from clinical disorders to everyday problems.
The types of issues I generally deal with include:
Life adjustments and transitions (eg. Losing one’s job, going through a divorce, becoming a parent, family changes)
Crises (feeling suicidal, feeling hopeless or helpless, being stuck in a problem that’s too private to share with friends or family)
Problems with moods (including Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder)
Problems with anxiety, worrying and intrusive thoughts
Feeling stuck in an abusive relationship
Parenting or family difficulties
If you are not sure whether your issue is one that I deal with please feel free to email me to query.
I use a mode of therapy called Emotionally Focussed Therapy when doing couples therapy. This modality is designed to restore and promote a sense of connectivity and emotional responsiveness within a relationship. The focus is therefore on building the attachment between the partners.
John Bowlby suggested that there are four key characteristics of an attachment:
1. Proximity Maintenance: We have a desire to be physically close to those we are attached to.
2. Safe Haven: We reach-out to our loved one for comfort and safety when we feel afraid, threatened or insecure,
3. Secure Base: We feel like we can trust the security and permanence of the person we love. No matter if we are separated by time, distance or tension, we can trust that the person’s love and security remains.
4. Separation Distress: We feel pain, sadness or distress when we are separated from the one we love.
When a couple fall in love and form an attachment they find soothing, reassurance and comfort in each other, even during individual differences or disagreements.
It is natural for couples to have pockets of disconnection. What is important is that they are able to identify that disconnection and restore the bond before an emotional injury or neglect sets in. When this bond is not restored a void develops, and partners no longer see each other as a “safe haven.” Over time needs, desires and complaints stop being shared and instead are kept secret. Resentment and anger develops and sometimes turns into harsh words or regrettable behaviour. It becomes a cycle that deepens withdrawal, disconnection and loneliness.
In couples therapy we work together to diminish the void that has formed, and create a cycle of communication that deepens openness, connection and togetherness.