Emotional intimacy first starts with us.
To know oneself is an art, and to know another is to deepen that self-knowledge. But emotional intimacy first starts with us.
Emotional intimacy is the relationship you have with yourself first, because if you know and accept who you are on a deep level, you will accept another.
If you are struggling with a lack of belief, empathy, compassion, or disconnection from yourself, this tends to affect your work, friendships, and relationships. Life goals will feel more challenging and confusing.
Therapy could help you reconnect to yourself…
… and build your self-confidence.
Truly knowing yourself opens the doorway to a more fulfilling and engaging life.
If you are feeling down because your relationships have not been successful or have continuous conflict with your partner, spouse, friends, family, or work, then it’s time to look closer at what’s going on internally.
Shame about having needs could also lead to shutting down emotionally.
“I am afraid to share what I want because X will think I am needy or will leave me,” is about shame and fear of abandonment. Instead, we experience anxiety, tension, even depression, because we are afraid to voice our needs. This leaves us unmotivated and resentful without understanding why, and we emotionally shut down.
“I can’t change jobs because these important people in my life will not approve,” could leave one feeling stuck in a stressful job or situation. Having the courage to make decisions without the need of approval of others is challenging but necessary to live a life of satisfaction and empowerment.
Perhaps fear or shame are getting in the way of accomplishment. “I will be on my own, as my friends, partner, or spouse will leave me if I don’t follow their rules.”
Fears of not being liked, or different, or of being rejected have the potential to leave us feeling paralyzed, not empowered to make decisions for ourselves.
Therapy is a safe space for you to share your deep fears…
… concerns, feelings, needs, and expectations, which might be scary to share with others, even our self.
In sharing your innermost thoughts and feelings, you will become better acquainted with yourself, understand your own needs, and align with your inner world, which will lead to healthy problem solving.
In deeply knowing and accepting yourself, you will experience less anxiety and depression and higher self-esteem and confidence in decision-making.
Life will always be filled with challenges that are confusing and anxiety-provoking, but therapy will help you gain a deeper understanding of who you are and what you need for your happiness and well-being.
As your relationship with yourself deepens, your relationship with others will deepen simultaneously.
A safe and supportive space…
Consider my office a safe space for you to unwind, to lighten your load, and just be. Our environment plays an important role on how we experience ourselves; my office, decorated with warm lamps, original artwork, and a large couch, will help you feel safe and held.
I will help you feel seen by listening without judgment, gently challenging you if necessary, while guiding you through the process of self-discovery.
Exploration of deeper feelings such as shame, anger, or fear will help toward emotional intimacy and self-confidence.
Exploring these places safely will help you connect to your true self, and you will be supported as fears or anxieties come up. I will help you develop skills to reduce anxiety and depression so that you are not overwhelmed.
Confronting the fear of those deep places within…
Those deep places within us containing secret emotional reactions like fear and shame, will be gently challenged and seen without judgment.
When various emotions like fears or shame are expressed, they often lose there power or hold on us.
“I am afraid they will reject me if they know how imperfect I am.” Fear of abandonment could override our healthy decision-making. Wanting to love, be seen, connect, and not be abandoned are natural, but they become an impediment if we stifle our needs to keep a relationship.
Fears of not being seen are unconscious, and we might not be aware of it; but it shows up when we are in conflict.
“You don’t love me because you came home late last night, or you preferred spending time with your friends than with me,” are unconscious fears of rejection or abandonment and an unexpressed need that was not shared with your partner. Exploring these aspects will help give proper perspective on a conflict and insight into you.
All relationships, either with family, friends, or intimate partners, have the potential to induce feelings of fear, shame, and anxiety. Therapy is helpful in understanding these complex feelings and identifying the underlying reasons for anger, fear and withdrawal when we are in conflict with others.
Experience understanding and compassion.
Through therapy, you will learn to view your relationships from numerous perspectives, yours and the other’s viewpoint.
Exposing these inner places will help develop confidence and safety within yourself and with others.
“I don’t feel like I belong, or people are looking at me, or I am so different or needy…” leave you afraid and anxious, scurrying for a safe place. Therapy will help you feel more engaged and connected. You will notice that you are able to move beyond your fear and connect with others despite fears or embarrassment.
Fears of abandonment, or of not being seen or heard, or acknowledged, and fears of “not fitting in” will diminish. Therapy will help you gain self-confidence and courage to tackle new experiences that previously felt dangerous. As you gain new skills and self-knowledge, your fears and insecurities will be diminished over time.
For some of us, the environments that we grew up in were not healthy. This interfered with the development of our self-esteem or confidence in ourselves, and we felt that something was wrong with us. Because these feelings are difficult to acknowledge alone, we bury them.
Therapy will help you reconnect to these deeper feelings, your hidden self, and in turn connect with and form closer and deeper relationships with those around you.
It won’t always be easy…
…. our brains perceive new experiences as dangerous. That’s because our brain likes things to be easy. It doesn’t like pain, which is why we react so strongly to it – why we even perceive new experiences as dangerous.
Therapy will challenge you to uncover feelings and reactions that you previously covered up. Because therapy will help you feel seen and heard, you will develop the capacity to share your feelings with confidence.
Instead of “You made me feel angry” will become “I feel hurt and angry, because I was disappointed by you for the fifth time.”
Feelings of vulnerability are sometimes not easy to experience; often it’s much easier to hide or suppress these dangerous feelings.
Therapy will support you and help you lean into these formerly dangerous emotions and experience safety. Feelings are natural. Sharing our natural feelings is essential in any relationship; taking ownership of our responses helps with how we react.
Therapy will help you open up… and it’s so worth it!
In therapy, you’ll learn to shift negative thinking – to challenge old habits and thoughts and replace them with healthy and innovative ones. Like a midwife, I will be a witness to your shifts as we align together utilizing tools already within you.
Sometimes you might be challenged to view something or someone differently… but always in a safe environment where you are acknowledged, validated, and supported.
You will begin to grow gentle with yourself, giving yourself permission to experience your feelings, and unafraid to be imperfect. Over time you will grow to experience vulnerability as a strength, and your intimacy with others will grow to new heights.
Therapy will aid in your journey of self-discovery.
Self-discovery implies knowledge and understanding of one’s self in new ways. Self-discovery is all about intimacy.
Intimacy with one’s self will lead to a deeper knowledge and acceptance of yourself and of others. Knowing yourself will help you experience self-empathy and compassion, and relate to others with less judgment, a process of learning about yourself from the inside out.
Often we have thoughts and feelings that we dare not share with anyone – not even ourselves (this is natural and very, very normal). But in our sessions together, you will safely navigate what formerly felt like treacherous territory, because I will have your back.
I will listen, hear, and see you without judgment.
Rediscover each other as a couple…
Discovering who you are in partnership with another comes from self-discovery and understanding of your individual self.
As a couple, you’ll learn to dance the emotional tango. It’s very challenging at first, but eventually you will synchronize your steps, developing a deeper understanding of yourself and your partner.
Checking in with yourself and understanding the ways in which you are seeing, hearing, and feeling in relation to your partner; adjusting to your needs and those of your partner, with flexibility, is dancing the emotional tango.
If after a long day, you react with irritability (“I can’t believe you expect me to cook with you when I am tired”), starting a fight when all you wanted was to order out and relax is not doing the tango.
“You don’t meet my needs” may come as a surprise to your partner. This could possibly mean that you are not sharing your needs with them. Rather you are expecting them to pull a mind-reading trick of knowing what your needs are even when you are not sharing; this feels hurtful to them.
Understanding how you both experience love and connection is learning to speak each other’s love language. “I love cooking with you,” might be one way your partner shows love and feels cherished. A “take out dinner” without having to ask after sharing how exhausted a day you had may be your way of feeling loved and cherished. We experience love differently.
Understanding your emotional needs and how you experience love and connection in relation to your partner offers the experience of synchronous movements in your relationship, the emotional tango.
As a couple, you will be helped to share your feelings and needs, and to remain open for feedback from the other and to adapt with flexibility.
I will guide you every step of the way…
… both individually and as a couple.
Coming to understand who we are deeply and what we need from others that we can’t provide ourselves are fundamental to having a strong and healthy relationship, either with a loved one or family, friends, or co-workers.
If you are struggling in on-going conflict with your partner, at work or with family and friends, I will help you explore the obstacles that have gotten in the way of fully connecting with others.
If dating is challenging and you are emotionally exhausted from going on one too many dates without connecting with anyone, then therapy is helpful in understanding some unmet needs that you might be bringing to each encounter.
“He has not called me in two days… or he ghosted me, or I thought he was interested in a relationship…”
These unmet needs might have nothing to do with that person you just met and more to do with your expectations.
Understanding your expectations and needs when dating is essential to enjoying the process of meeting someone new.
If your marriage, partnership, or dating are fraught with unresolved conflicts leaving you angry, resentful, and unappreciated where you feel pain and tightness in your chest, neck, and back or so numbed out that you walk through life on autopilot, therapy will help you reconnect to yourself.
Either alone or as a couple, therapy will help you identify obstacles that have gotten in the way of intimacy. Understanding yourself and what your needs are will help guide you in having them met. Relational intimacy starts with you.
Intimacy starts with the relationship we have with ourself. So drawing from a deeper pool of knowledge of our deeper self, of what makes us feel joy, contentment, or connected will help us engage intimately with others and all the relationships in our lives.
Emotional intimacy is the first step toward relational intimacy, I am happy to begin work with you.
Give me a call today: (845) 516-4779
I am passionate about this work…
… and I really enjoy helping others connect to themselves and in partnerships.
I chose this profession because I personally experienced the challenge of both being a couple and watching close friends going through painful divorces. What were once happy relationships changed into painful, sad, and disruptive experiences for them. Most regretted their decisions to divorce or break-up.
Relationships are powerful: They can take you to the heights of happiness and the low points of despair. It is the toughest work I have personally ever undertaken, even after close to 18 years of marriage. But it is the most exciting and joyful of experiences. Relationships are surprising, engaging, dynamic, and exciting. To dive deep inside another’s mystery is not easy, but it’s definitely worth the journey.
My professional and personal story…
I received a bachelor of fine arts degree from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. I worked for 18 years as a graphic designer and art director in publishing in New York City and served 3 years as a gallery curator and director in Rhinebeck, NY. I love art and creativity, and I still paint in oils and watercolors.
Before marriage, when I was dating, my office was often filled with colleagues going through challenges in their relationships. I spent many late nights on the phone with my close friends analyzing and discussing our painful dating experiences… and much time and money combing through self-help books looking for answers. At first, I found marriage challenging, but it’s now one of the most rewarding parts of my life.
What propelled me back to graduate school to become a therapist is my undying curiosity about people. I am privileged to hear other people’s stories and be invited into their worlds. I feel as if I am hearing stories that read like great novels the world never gets to hear about. This is sad, because we all want to be seen and heard.
I received a master’s degree in clinical social work from Adelphi University in 2014 and underwent post-graduate trainings at the Training Institute for Mental Health, supervision from Blanton-Peale Institute and Counseling Center, and became a certified psychodynamic couples therapist in 2017.
I am an eclectic therapist utilizing many different modalities and interests in work with individuals and couples. I am passionate about human nature, and I continually deepen my professional knowledge with courses and workshops from The C.G. Jung Institute in New York, Ackerman Institute, and online couples training with couples experts Terry Real and Esther Perel.
I am a member of the C.G. Jung Institute and National Association of Social Workers (NASW).
When I am not working…
I enjoy spending time with my husband and beautiful ginger cat, Leo.
I love animals, nature, cooking, painting, reading, writing, hiking, traveling, and restaurants.
I also enjoy meeting and observing people!
“The art of life is the most distinguished and rarest of all the arts.”
– Carl Jung