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therapy for chronic illness

As a chronic illness therapist I support people living through chronic illness, injury, disabilities and other health conditions. Whether your diagnosis is recent or happened a long time ago, I can help you through how it impacts you today.

the chronic illness therapist's role

My purpose as your therapist is not to tell you what you already know. Chronically ill folks often know themselves and what they need better than anyone else, the issue is often when others around you do not understand how a chronic illness affects a person's life. Whether you are dealing with a judgmental family member or a workplace with high expectations, I am here to support you and problem solve with you.

Dealing with a chronic health condition can shatter your sense of trust in the world, trust of others, and trust of your own body. When previously helpful coping strategies are no longer accessible, your body is unfamiliar to you, and your resources are tapped out, I will walk alongside you and help to build much needed supports.

how can mental health therapy for chronic illness help?

  • Manage effects of non-illness stressors to reduce overall stress load

  • Problem-solve how to balance energy level vs responsibilities

  • Handle relationships with others who don’t understand your experience

  • Support you in the grief, sadness, and frustration of a new (or old) diagnosis

  • Build a sense of identity outside of your illness

  • Being a source of spoons (for problem solving, organization, self care check-ins) when you are out

medical trauma & ptsd

It is so common for medical experiences to cause trauma. As a therapist specializing in chronic illness with a strong background in trauma and the nervous system, I can:

  • Help you identify when trauma symptoms are present

  • Sort out what is a “normal” reaction vs a traumatized one, and provide appropriate support

  • Resource you for future medical procedures and appointments

  • Help you process the traumatic experience so it no longer intrudes in your daily life

mindfulness and chronic illness

I work with many people who have felt frustrated that mindfulness, meditation, or yoga are impossible due to physical discomfort, low energy, time constraints, and other realities of chronic illness. If mindfulness has been inaccessible to you, I would love to help you build this into your life in a more realistic way.

some ways I can help as your therapist:

  • Integrating mindfulness throughout our therapy session

    • This is key - when we use mindfulness skills throughout the session, it builds the same neural pathways as engaging in mindfulness meditation

  • Providing accessible mindfulness resources

  • Helping you build a supportive environment at home for mindfulness practice

  • Providing a safer place to practice mindfulness if it’s overwhelming on your own

  • Utilizing body-based skills from Sensorimotor Psychotherapy

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