Laurie Sloane   Licensed Clinical Social Worker


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Over the past 30 years, a combination of diverse professional experiences and extensive training have made me the therapist I am today. In addition to a Master’s Degree in Social Work, I have participated in continuing education courses and seminars to ensure that I am incorporating the latest in psychoanalysis into treatment plans.

I joined the faculty of the Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Study Center (PPSC), a post-graduate training institute, and served as the Executive Director for 10 years. During my tenure, I taught and supervised candidates, developed an internship program for graduate students, and worked to establish guidelines for training and licensure in New York.  My expertise is broad and far-reaching.

My current areas of specialty are: 

Therapy for Young Adults

Of late, more attention has been focused on the well-being of anxious, depressed and suicidal students on college campuses. I have worked with many students trying to adjust to life away from home. The social and academic pressures of college can bring about the emergence of major mental illness and addiction that needs to be addressed with the proper treatment. In addition to individual sessions, I also offer group treatment to college students and young adults.

Therapy for Women of all ages

I have extensive experience in counseling women of all ages who suffer from eating disorders. Today, there are a variety of treatments available; I’m able to help navigate through the options and figure out which will work best on a case by case basis.

As baby boomers are aging, they are learning that menopause no longer spells the end. Life after 65 continues to be an important, yet often overlooked part of adult development. I’m able to offer support in either individual or group therapy sessions for women navigating midlife and beyond.

Therapy for Veterans

I am affiliated with Here to Help Military and Families, a Long Island group that offers free counseling to returning veterans and their families. I offer a holistic approach to treatment; for both veterans returning from combat, suffering from the effects of trauma and PTSD, as well as their families, who are struggling to understand how difficult reentry into civilian life can be.
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What can you gain from therapy?

Connection to others

Over the past 30 years, I’ve learned a lot about relationships and the value in sharing our thoughts and feelings with friends and partners. Knowing we are being listened to, valued and understood is crucial to emotional wellbeing.

Hope for the future

Therapy is a process. Though there is often no simple, quick solution, it provides a safe space to explore emotions, thoughts, and actions in an in-depth and meaningful way, to eventually bring about change.

Growth and change

Through continued treatment, therapy can be an incredibly powerful tool in helping to significantly improve your quality of life and outlook.

Call me today at 212-413-7088 for a free 15 minute phone consultation.

Category Archives: Couples

Couples Therapist

Why do Couples Seek Therapy?

Below are just some of the reasons couples call me for an appointment seeking a couples therapist. Once they come in, many couples discover they are ambivalent about continuing in the marriage or realize they want to work on problem areas and stay together.

Some Reasons Couples Seek out a Therapist:

  • Adjustment to living together
  • Conflicts over in-laws,
  • Money habits of saving and spending
  • Frequency of sex, decreased interest in sex
  • Infidelity
  • Ups and downs of love and longevity in marriage
  • Decision to Divorce or Stay together
  • Uncoupling (transitioning to separation and divorce)
  • Co-parenting after divorce

Sometimes, one partner has been having an affair and needs a safe pla

ce to disclose it.  I’ve worked with couples that decide to stay together after infidelity developing healthier relationships. Of course, lots of couples do not remain in the marriage and work towards divorce.  If enough trust and safety is created in the therapeutic relationship, the couple learns how to communicate their needs and wants more effectively. This often leads to a deeper connection and greater emotional and physical intimacy.

Examples From My Couples Therapy Sessions

examples-couples-therapist-nyc-consultation-02Let me give you an example of how showing more vulnerability helped develop more trust in the relationship. Just to be clear, this example is a composite of my experiences, not an actual couple in therapy with me.

Sally and John sat down on the couch next to each with some room between them.

Sally begin by saying they had been married a little over a year, and were fighting constantly but not sure why.  John agreed and added that they were less intimate in and out of bed.

During one of our early sessions, I asked each of them to say what attracted them to one another, in hopes of reminding them of the positive aspects of their connection.

By asking them to simply say what they each felt and listen carefully to one another, this freed them up to be less angry and more trusting in the relationship.

happy-relationship-successful-couples-therapist-ny-03As they learned more about each other’s backgrounds, they developed a more in depth understanding of some their patterns. These including overspending money because of early deprivation resulting in an insecure attachment to the mother, and multiple hospitalizations for a chronic childhood illness, which led to feelings of uncertainty and anxiety in adulthood.

Overtime, they developed more empathy for each and stopped fighting. Instead they listened better to each other and became more respectful and admiring. That’s not to say they didn’t have conflicts, but they learned to how to communicate better when they did have them.

Claims of Favoritism During the Therapy Process

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Sometimes one person in the couple will complain the therapist is partial to the other person. It is important to raise this question with the therapist and not be concerned about his or her reaction.  The Therapist is trained to reflect on his or her own experience. It’s called countertransference, which focused on the internal feelings of the therapist.  Sometimes, by bringing this up, a therapist will recognize what is leading to the question and adjust the way they are working, and use it as an opportunity to explore what’s leading to that feeling.

If for example, if a person struggles with sibling rivalry, it might get triggered in the treatment. In reflecting on experiences growing up, it also allows their partner to better understand them.

These are just a few examples of what comes up for couples and therapists in Couples Therapy. As I’ve suggested, it is a very rich and effective way to improve communication and connection.

If you are having relationship issues and think you could benefit from counseling, give me a call today and let’s discuss if you could benefit from couples therapy.

Laurie Sloane, LCSW
330 West 58th Street, Suite 604
New York, NY 10019
212-413-7088

For more information, visit my website: www.LaurieSloane.com

 

Strengthening the Bonds: When to Use a Psychotherapist for Relationship Issues

top-nyc-psychotherapist-for-relationship-issues-couples-01Do I need a psychotherapist for relationship issues? There is some outdated notion that if a relationship is meant to be, it will easily fall into place. That is not entirely true. Of course, too much struggle is a sign of a problematic relationship that should perhaps not be maintained. However, healthy relationships do require a balance of ease alongside purposeful work intended to build, strengthen, and maintain the relationship over time. Oftentimes, couples elect to use relationship counseling to support the longevity of their relationship.

Counseling for Pre-Marital Preparation

One good time to attend relationship counseling is before you commit into marriage. Shifting from dating to fiancés to a married couple can be a big change. As your relationship status changes and your life shifts accordingly, it can be helpful to talk over all the details in pre-marital counseling.

A relationship counselor can assist an engaged couple in establishing healthy communication patterns, figuring out what their married life will look like, and equip them to deal with anything unexpected that may occur during their lives together. This is a good investment of time to plan for a marriage not just a wedding. Most couples counselors can provide pre-marital counseling if you just request it.

Counseling a Distressed Relationship

counseling-improve-relationships-marriage-top-nyc-couples-therapist-02Often couples seek out counseling when they are facing some distress in their relationship that may seem to threaten the health or longevity of it. There are many different circumstances that can cause distress in a couples’ relationship. Each couple may experience their own compilation of challenges.

Some couples find they grow apart over time and need assistance growing back together. Some couples face unique difficulties such as a miscarriage or the loss of a child. Others may face difficulties in communication and emotional withdrawal from one another. Still others may face trust issues they need to resolve. It can sometimes be difficult to know how to repair such matters without outside help.

Strengthening Any Committed Relationship

happy-couple-psychotherapist-success-counseling-03Even still, the choice to attend couples counseling does not necessarily require a big change in the relationship or a significant problem. Many couples choose to attend relationship counseling simply to strengthen their relationship and perhaps to avoid any major relationship problems in the future.

Attending relationship counseling can give a couple the chance to discuss their similarities and differences, their communication styles, and the way those factors could affect their interactions with one another. Couples can learn how to communicate most effectively with each other, how to have healthy disagreements, and how to work through difficult times together rather than drawing apart.

Closing Thoughts

Relationships are not always easy and sometimes a couple needs the assistance of another perspective to help them build a solid foundation, strengthen it over time, and work through any challenges they may face.

If you want to pursue relationship counseling, consider contacting Licensed Clinical Social Worker Laurie Sloan at 212-413-7088 today, to schedule an appointment. With over 30 years of experience in the field, Laurie has helped many couples strengthen their bonds. She can help you too.

www.LaurieSloane.com

 

Repairing the Rupture: Working with a Psychotherapist for Infidelity

psychotherapist-for-infidelity-cheating-spouse-partner-01When a relationship has been hit with infidelity, it can rupture the trust between partners, and entirely change their dynamic from that point forward. Many couples may find themselves entirely uncertain about how to repair the situation, and seek the help of a psychotherapist for infidelity issues. Further, each partner may also be struggling with their own reactions. After an affair, especially if a couple wants to repair the relationship, they may find it helpful to work with a psychotherapist. Learn more about the repercussions of infidelity and how a therapist can help:

Effects of Infidelity for the Betrayed

When you think about the repercussions of infidelity, whether it may be a one-night stand or a long-term affair, you might most often think about the effects it would have on the betrayed partner. Indeed, that is the person in the union that most people would feel most sympathetic towards.

Similarly, the betrayed partner will have many reactions including feeling deceived or lied to and a sense that trust was betrayed. These reactions could also cause anxiety and sadness. In some cases, the betrayed may even feel a sense of low self-esteem or low self-worth in the wake of an affair. This partner may find counseling helpful to help them cope with what happened and the resulting reactions.

Effects of Infidelity for the Unfaithful

nyc-couples-therapist-for-cheating-trust-issues-02Although most people might initially feel most sympathetic towards the betrayed partner in a union, the unfaithful partner (that is the one who committed infidelity) might also be dealing with many different reactions. They may be feeling guilt or shame and they may experience their own self-deprecating thoughts regarding their actions. Depending on the prospects of resolution, they may also be depressed.

Further, the unfaithful partner may have already been dealing with something that led to their affair. It could have been that they were feeling unfulfilled in the relationship or alienated in some way. This is not to excuse their behavior; however, it is another component that may need to be addressed to resolve the situation. Therapy can help with both the pre-existing problems and the resulting reactions.

Effects of Infidelity for the Relationship

top-couples-therapy-psychotherapist-nyc-03Of course, not only each partner will be affected by infidelity, but the relationship as a whole will also be altered. It is for this reason that many couples find it necessary to seek couples counseling after an affair has occurred. Relationship counseling can help a couple to work through what has happened and help them to identify what steps they want to take next for their relationship.

In some cases, partners may want to repair the rupture that occurred and certainly couples counseling can help with that. In other cases, the partners may find it impossible or prefer not to repair the relationship. A couples therapist can also assist partners in reaching an amicable end to the relationship.

Closing Thoughts

Infidelity can have a big impact on a relationship and the partners involved. It is not easy for couples to repair the rupture, especially without outside help. If your relationship has been affected by infidelity consider working with a counselor.

Contact experienced relationship therapist and Licensed Clinical Social Worker Laurie Sloan at 212-413-7088 to schedule an appointment for relationship counseling.

For more information please visit my main website : www.LaurieSloane.com

Struggling with Commitment? Seek Out Help

commitmentMany people struggle with commitment. What is it? In short, commitment is the ability to make a decision to something. Generally, those who are said to be unable to commit do so in relationships. That means that they may not be ready or willing to get married or settle down. However, commitment isn’t just about relationships. In many cases, it is a problem that stems from a much deeper place. Because of this, it is often beneficial to speak to and work with a therapist if you are facing commitment concerns or your loved one is.

Why Can’t You Commit?

Many people who are struggling with commitment do not make a conscious decision to do so. They want relationships. They want to be loyal. They just struggle with staying on that path. Commitment problems can happen for many reasons. In nearly all cases, they stem from past relationships or thoughts. If you are struggling with this on any level, speak to a therapist about the way you feel.

  • What makes you limit these types of commitments with others?
  • Have you been let down in your past and that is impacting your future?
  • Are you unsure why you struggle in this area?
  • Could your family be at the heart of the problem?
  • Perhaps you just do not want to make those decisions just yet.

No matter what the underlying problem is, one thing is for sure. You need to get to the bottom of it and only for yourself. There are various reasons to do so and many ways to do so. However, one thing is going to help you. You need someone in your court to listen to you, to help you understand what you are facing, and someone who can give you guidance on how to improve.

commitmentThere are plenty of reasons why people struggle to commit. In some cases, they just do not want to make the decision in front of them. In other cases, they are unsure because there are too many factors on the line. And, in still others, they have a past that is limiting their abilities. When you come in to see our therapist, you can work through these concerns and gather more information about what you are facing and why. Even if you do not want to change or make a decision, you need to get to the heart of the reason why for yourself.

Contact me to schedule a consultation about commitment at 212-413-7088.

Your Relationship and Its Future: Couples Need Psychotherapy

5592Now is an important time to stop and take a look at where your relationship is and where it can go from here. Every relationship will face ups and downs. You and your spouse or significant other are very much different people. You will have different opinions. You will react to situations in differing ways. And, perhaps the most difficult to deal with, is dealing with each other. But, that doesn’t mean you have to accept it all.

What you need, though, is the ability to talk to a professional who can offer guidance.

Improving Your Relationship

If you both want to improve your relationship, you can often do so by bringing a third party into the process. That is, you need someone to help you to each see the differences, good and bad, occurring in opinions and needs and to find a solution to the problems or conflicts. When you work with a psychotherapist, you can accomplish this in a productive manner. You can get help with many of the areas you are struggling with, which may include:

  • Improving communication
  • Being more receptive of each other’s needs
  • Learning to manage limitations
  • Working to improve goals
  • Outlining what your future together may be

What are you struggling with? Are you and your significant other often on different pages or even different paths in life? In many cases, you can see improvement in the quality of your life by simply learning how to interact in a more effective manner.

Sometimes It Is Not Going to Work

relationshipAnother way that psychotherapy can help you is a bit more straightforward. You may need to come together and talk about all you have been through. You both need to state how you feel. And, in some cases, you both need to learn to accept that it just cannot go on any longer. In some situations, it is the hardest decision to make.

 

However, making that decision to continue or to end the relationship is a very big one.

When you work with your psychotherapist, you can gain the improvement in your quality of life that you need. For good or for bad, these professionals can give you insight into what your options are and how to improve your relationship. Take a few minutes to consider what you are doing right now. Could you improve life with a psychotherapist?

Contact me to schedule a free consultation at 212-413-7088.

How Couples Can Communicate and Learn to Fight Effectively

fightingYou have a lot to say. There’s a lot bottled up inside of you that you just cannot find the way to say. And, you are overwhelmed with all of the pressures you have on a daily basis. You just wish someone would understand. When you feel like you are up against a wall with your spouse, even if you love that person, it may seem impossible to see a way forward.

However, with the help of a psychotherapist, you can learn how to improve the way you communicate and, in many situations, learn how to get out all of that frustration.

Communicating Is Never Easy

There is no doubt that communication is at the heart of nearly every problem that couples have. Of course, there are situations where people are just so different and unique that it is hard to actually see what options are available to you. You may not be able to get along. However, in many cases, you can find improvement in your quality of life just by learning how to communicate in a more effective manner.

  • Discuss what really is at the heart of your “problem”
  • Learn how to say what’s really bothering you
  • Realize that your opinion matters just as much as that of your spouse
  • Learn how to talk about your needs
  • Learn to talk about your fears and worries

Improving communication is always at the heart of the needs of today’s busy and often times overwhelmed couples. Sometimes, that’s all you need.

Fighting in a Safe Environment

fightingBut, there are other times when the most important thing for you to do is to just let it all out. Creating a safe environment in psychotherapy, you can fight. In other words, sometimes, you need to let all of that frustration, anger, and overwhelming worry out. When you visit a therapist, you can do that more effectively. You can safely let go and release all of that pent up frustration.

And, you can do it in a place where no one is going to walk away, everyone is going to listen, and a solution may become available.
The key here is realizing the value and benefit of turning to a therapist. When you go in to see our professionals, you get the information and support you need. You learn what you can do to overcome the communication issues.