I like to describe my therapeutic style to prospective patients as 'accepting and curious.' In using the word 'accepting' I want to convey the importance I place on our work together being a place where you can feel free to express yourself in ways you might not have had the chance to before. Too often in our lives, we hold back our feelings and thoughts because we anticipate judgment or criticism. In fact, our early experiences often set the stage for how we learn to behave to avoid such negativity. This often means that there are parts of ourselves that we stifle or push down. In therapy, I ask you to do the opposite. I ask you to explore and speak to those parts of yourself that you’ve kept hidden, knowing that you are in a place of acceptance.
When I say that I am 'curious' as therapist, what I mean is that I see my role as uncovering assumptions that may have previously been outside your awareness. This happens to all of us. We grow up being told certain things, and over time we come to view these things as facts, ways that we "should" live our lives. Oftentimes, this leads us to feel stuck, because we're operating according to a set of principles that might not actually serve us. This is where curiosity comes in. As we talk in therapy, I will start to look for these assumptions, these "shoulds." Together, we will examine them, and through this examination, you will be able to determine for yourself the kind of life you actually want to live, rather than the life you feel you "should" be living.
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