Grief

6 Ways to Combat Holiday Social Anxiety | Orlando Social Anxiety Counseling

Halloween has come and gone and now we are starting to see Christmas trees, Santa Clauses, and retailers decking the halls with sales and specials. Thanksgiving has gotten lost amongst the hustle and bustle of it all, which means one thing: The Holidays are upon us. The Holidays are a time when people enjoy Christmas parties, family gatherings and work events. ‘Tis the season to be jolly, right? Well, not for someone suffering from Social Anxiety Disorder.

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The Holidays can be one of the most stressful times of the year for someone who suffers from Social Anxiety. This may even be a time that he or she finds dreadful. Here are Six Ways to Combat Social Anxiety During the Holidays and make this season a merry one.

Six Ways to Combat Social Anxiety During the Holidays

1) Inform Yourself: Anxiety comes from the unknown: “Who will be at this party?” “What if everyone thinks I’m stupid for bringing this gift? What are we even supposed to bring?” “What time is everyone showing up?” If you ask the host these questions and get this information beforehand, it may alleviate a lot of that anxiety.

2) Stick with the least threatening situations: If you are the most comfortable at a small family gathering or an intimate dinner rather than the annual corporate Christmas party, then go to those events. You do NOT have to go to every event that you are invited to, but you DO need to remain social during the holidays. Avoidance will only fuel your social anxiety.

3) Avoid/Limit alcohol: You may think that a few glasses of wine may help calm your nerves, […]

5 Signs That Your Teen May Be Cutting | Orlando Self-Harm Counseling

Cutting, a form of self-harming is unfortunately far too common amongst teenagers today. There comes a point where a teenager may no longer know the best way to cope with stress, sadness, anger and other emotions. The emotional pain is too much to handle and the only way they can find relief is by diverting their attention away from the emotional pain and directing it to physical pain. I have had clients describe cutting as “an escape,” “a release” and even “a high.” Orlando Self-Harm Counseling Can Help!

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Although a teenager that cuts is not necessarily suicidal, this is a devastating, accidental outcome much too often. This negative coping mechanism is one that needs to be addressed as soon as it is brought to light. If you are unsure if your teen may be cutting, then here are some signs to look out for.

  1. You may begin to notice that he or she has withdrawn from friends and family. Isolation is one of the biggest signs of self-harming because it is a shameful and embarrassing experience and usually done alone in secret.
  2. You may also begin to notice that your teen is no longer participating in activities that he or she once took interest in like sports, extracurricular activities, dance, music, etc. They have turned their once healthy outlet into a negative coping mechanism.
  3. You may see or hear that the music they are listening to or the movies/YouTube videos they are watching are very “dark.” There are plenty of artists putting out music and/or videos sending a message that teens feel they can relate to, but the message is usually pretty heavy and negative.
  4. If you see […]

“Her Story” Orlando Infertility Counseling

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Orlando Infertility Counseling with Life Counseling Solutions highlights an Orlando woman who is stepping out as an advocate and writing about “Her Story”.  She is a voice for other women who are feeling alone and struggling with infertility.

“Her Story”

 When my husband and I started trying to get pregnant, we just assumed it would happen naturally and quickly…the way that 50% of women get pregnant within 3 months, 75% within 6 months, and 90% within a year.  After about 9 months of no success, I finally got a referral for a reproductive endocrinologist, and that is when our journey began.  We learned that we had some mild male factor infertility and a low ovarian reserve.  That was a blow to find out, because, at only 32, I still considered myself young and healthy.  Our doctor encouraged us to get started on fertility treatments soon since “time was not on our side.” We started our first round of IUI a few months later.  Despite everything seeming ideal that cycle, we did not have success.  I remember crying the morning I got my period and thinking that it might never happen for us.  It seemed that everyone I know was getting pregnant.  I dreaded going on Facebook because I just knew that someone else would be announcing her pregnancy, but yet I couldn’t resist checking anyway.

We did another round of IUI two months later and at the end of the month, we got the news we had been praying for…a positive pregnancy test!  My beta levels were rising just as they should and we quickly spread the word among our […]

Trash Talking Your Ex:The Long Term Emotional Impact For Children

There is an old saying “There is a fine line between love and hate.” You understand this now.  You never thought you would be so confused, full of anger and overwhelmed by feelings.  Being a divorcee and co-parenting never crossed your mind. You are hurt, angry and trash talking your ex. You try to not to say anything in front of the kids but you have a million passionate words to describe your ex and you were done wrong. The attorney and judge stressed the impact negative comments about your ex partner would have on your kids. So what is the long term emotional impact for your children when trash talking your ex?

We all know kids of divorce. Some of these kids are adults now who have commitment problems, poor self esteem, trust issues and don’t know what a healthy relationship looks like. Maybe this is you or your ex? You may have parents who divorced and trash talked each other. Was this your normal? Did this impact you as a child?

Our childhood experiences and behavior modelled by our parents teach us how to interact, trust and develop relationships with those we love. It is doesn’t make sense but we often seek out partners with whom we can play out our unresolved childhood experiences.  So at times we try to re-enact our childhood and heal from the experiences we had as children.  You were impacted as a kid by what your parents said and role modelled for you, the good and the bad. We can’t help it.

Marina Sbrochi an author and writer is researching trash talking […]

Flight Of A Mom With a Special Needs Child, Orlando Women’s Counseling

 

When we are about to take off on a flight, the flight attendants instruct us about our seat belts, emergency exits and oxygen masks. Few of us pay attention.  We are busy settling a baby, telling our kids not to kick the seat in front of you and getting the DVD player rigged up. However, we are told if the oxygen mask drops from the compartment above to put your mask on first. Do you remember why? You can’t help your child/children if you don’t help yourself first and pass out from lack of oxygen. So why don’t we apply this in other areas of our lives that have taken flight in a direction we haven’t planned for? Especially if you have boarded the flight of a mom with a special needs child.

When we become mothers we often neglect ourselves as we care for our children. I am a mom of two little boys and ride the turbulent flight of health and learning problems for each one of my sons. It has taken time and effort to make sure both have proper care, Doctor’s, OT, PT, Speech, Learning Specialists, finding the right school, educating teachers about their needs, researching and being an advocate.

Maybe your experience began during pregnancy, when your child was born, in the NICU or during his/her first few years of life. You took on the role of being a mom and your child’s care needs are many: appointments, medication, daily functioning, nursing, emotional and social needs. You cope with crisis […]

Sarasota Murder-Suicide, Postpartum Depression? | Orlando Women’s Counseling

Sarasota Murder-Suicide, Postpartum Depression?

 Police: Mom shoots baby, then herself in Sarasota murder-suicide.  

This weekend a devastating and very sad story aired on the Orlando news.  The city of Sarasota needlessly lost a mother and baby.  This story impacts us greatly at Orlando Women’s Counseling as we work with women who have suffered from Postpartum Anxiety and Depression. Recently in Florida May 2013, a mom left her baby in the car and the baby died.  She was suffering from Postpartum Depression.  We can’t help but wonder if we could make a difference! Could we have prevented a tragedy like this from happening?  Was the Sarasota Murder-Suicide, Postpartum Depression? If others knew how to find help for a mom and baby could we prevent this from happening?

Cheryl Glassford, reporter with Bay New 9 in Sarasota wrote, “Little is known at this time about what could have led up to the incident, still some residents in the neighborhood are wondering if they could have made a difference.”

 One of the neighbors interviewed stated “There is help out there for people that need the help, and just ask…people will help,” said Kizman. “I pray for the family. For everyone that’s involved.”

How can you tell if a mom is suffering or is at risk for postpartum depression?

First, you should know a mom may not be able to ask for help. Why not?  Media reports of severe postpartum issues create shock waves in the public.  The loss of a mother and child is painful and hard to understand.  It hurts deeply. Thus, shame becomes […]

New Mom Jitters or Pregnancy and Postpartum Anxiety? Orlando Women’s Counseling

 New Mom Jitters or Pregnancy and Postpartum Anxiety? 

“I’ve heard of Postpartum Depression but what is Pregnancy and Postpartum Anxiety?”

“How can I tell if my Anxiety is something to be concerned about or if it is New Mom Jitters?”

  15- 20% of women experience Postpartum Anxiety and Depression (PSI, 2010).  But did you know that some women may experience Pregnancy Anxiety or Postpartum Anxiety with or without the signs of depression? So is it New Mom Jitters or Pregnancy and Postpartum Anxiety ? New Mom Jitters are normal, the fear, worry and adjustment to being a mother are part of the transition.  Many women don’t openly talk about how hard it really is! So how do we know what is normal and what is not?  We are bombarded by so much information from pre-conception to birth. Experts and Doctors spelling out  the “Do’s” and “Don’ts”.  How can women not be anxious, overwhelmed and fearful? So how do I know if my worries have gotten too big?  First It’s “OK” to struggle and second don’t get overwhelmed by thinking about your anxiety. Educate yourself to help yourself. You can come out of this and feel like yourself again.

What does Pregnancy and Postpartum Anxiety look like?

  • Worrying all the time~ New Moms worry but if anxiety changes your routine or you are unable to do activities that you did before the baby, such as driving or going to the store, this is a concern. Ditto if you are pregnant.
  • Uncontrollable thoughts that something bad is going to happen~ New Moms have these thoughts ( normal) but if you can’t control or talk […]

4 Warning Signs of Sibling Bullying

A new study published in the Journal of Pediatrics from researchers with the University of New Hampshire brings light to a very talked about subject in a very different environment. We are all aware of the unfortunate situation of bullying occurring at school. Name calling, physical aggression, and children taunting each other are the common methods used by bullies towards their victims in the school setting. Depending on the severity of the bullying that an individual has experienced, it can have lasting impact on their emotional and psychological well-being.  But what about being bullied at home? Is it possible to be bullied by your own sibling? The aforementioned study finds that sibling bullying is real and can be harmful to a child or adolescent’SIBLINGBULLYINGs mental health.

Surely if you have grown up with brothers and sisters, or have children of your own, you are aware that various forms of sibling rivalry can occur. Maybe you argued over who the best athlete is or constantly fought over who would ride in the front seat.  Sibling bullying is different from sibling rivalry in that its main purpose is to hurt the other child. This can occur physically or emotionally.  Sibling bullying is different from peer bullying in that siblings have the ability to get at each other quickly. Parents, listed below are a few warning signs and advice to use if you suspect that sibling bullying is going on in your home. While this is not an exhaustive list, it exists to give parents a starting point to help assess the relationships between their children.

WARNING SIGNS

1.       Harsh insults are forms of sibling bullying and can take […]

7 Ways To Stay Sober When Traveling | Addiction | Life Counseling Solutions

Have you heard the old adage that “when the cat is away the mice will play?” When children are left unsupervised it doesn’t take long for them to find, or create, a little mischief. Who can blame them? Our brains quickly process the situation: no one’s around, this doesn’t happen too often, let’s take advantage of this opportunity and have some fun. As we grow out of childhood and even adolescence into young adulthood, not a lot changes in regards to “opportunistic situations.” For some men, and perhaps women as well, the struggle to not view pornography while at home or throughout the week in daily routine can be a real internal struggle. Now take that same individual and send them out-of-town to work and you have a potentially hazardous situation. Here are seven healthy tips that should help protect you when leaving the comforts of home for work in another city or country.global_professional-career-dining-etiquette-business-dinner-iStk

  • Everyone who struggles with pornography addiction or any other sexual compulsivity should have an accountability partner. If you don’t have one, get one! If you can’t find one, I’ll be yours until you can. Inform him or her of your work trip plans and increase the number of contacts over this period of time. This will help you to not take this trip in isolation, which can be a disaster if you’re in the hotel room all by yourself.
  • Try and book a hotel that doesn’t offer HBO type channels or offer pornographic videos. If you can’t find one simply request that the television be removed for the duration of your stay. Nothing is more important than your sobriety. Another option is to […]

A Cry for Help: 10 Things A Mother Might Post

Did you know that Facebook and other social media may be paving the way to bring attention to postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis?  We communicate on social networks daily; connect, express our feelings and seek support from others. Sadly, today a news story reported a young mother posted a cry for help on Facebook: she planned to take her 6 month old child’s life and then her own.  Family alerted the police but they were not able to reach her in time and the outcome was devastating.                                                                                                            

Postpartum Depression Misunderstood

Postpartum DepressionMedia reports of severe postpartum issues create shockwaves in the public. Thus shame becomes associated with postpartum depression.  Many women who suffer during the postpartum period do not seek treatment for fear of being identified with those who take the lives of their children.  Cases of infanticide coupled with suicide make the news headlines however; it is very rare for postpartum depression to develop into postpartum psychosis. Fortunately, postpartum psychosis can be treated successfully:  early intervention and education is the key and saves lives.  A new mom may not be able to ask for help.  She may also not look typically depressed and may even appear that she […]