Therapist: Julian Hayes
What is Integrative Psychotherapy?
The model of Integrative Psychotherapy I practice encompasses the use of a range of psychological approaches to assist clients in their process. It encompasses the use of Psycho-dynamic, Humanistic/ Existential, Cognitive Behavioural and Multicultural therapies.
Within my practice I Incorporate approaches to therapy, such as transactional analysis (TA) Art and play therapy, Gestalt, and Neuro Linguistic programming, as a way of embracing the inherent value of each individual.
It is a unifying form of psychotherapy that responds appropriately and effectively to each person. This approach facilitates an environment that focuses on clients’ specific therapeutic requirements. By incorporating this integrative approach, I am able to utilise a variety of human developmental theories to each stage of life, supporting an exploration of childhood through to adulthood, within an individual’s own personal limits and external constraints.
Within this framework it is recognised that integration is a process to which therapists also need to commit themselves. Thus, there is a focus on the personal integration of therapists. However, although a focus on personal growth in the therapist is essential, there needs also to be a commitment to the pursuit of knowledge in the area of psychotherapy and its related fields.
There is a particular ethical obligation on integrative psychotherapists to dialogue with colleagues of diverse orientations and to remain informed of the latest developments in their field.
What can be achieved through couples therapy?
Relationships come in many forms, whether you’re married, living together, single, gay or straight, we all at times have difficulties relating to ourselves and others. Couples therapy can enhance communication, resolve differences and assist when couples experience relationships breakdown.
Some people find that talking is not how they communicate, for this reason I sometimes incorporate drawing and mapping out your thoughts as a way to communicate and gain fresh insights.
In the case of extra marital affairs and family issues, if both or all parties agree, other people involved with the individuals in therapy may be invited to join the therapeutic relationship to try and resolve a specific issue. This can cause additional anxiety for some and will only take place if all parties are in agreement.
How integrated psychotherapy can help with loss and bereavement?
Bereavement is a term used to explain the process we go through when someone dies, it can feel just like the person has been forcibly taken
away from us. When someone you care about suddenly leaves your life, it’s not a case of taking time out to recover.
‘Recovery’ suggests that you will emerge exactly the same as you were before. In reality, all of your experiences shape the person you are and experiencing the death of someone you care about often has the biggest impact. Bereavement is about trying to accept what happened, learning to adjust to life without that person and finding a place to keep their memory alive while you try to get along as best you can.
“Getting through the front door was my hardest challenge. I cancelled my first appointment because I thought I was weak going to therapy… I laugh now when I think about it, ‘what was I so frightened of ‘. I managed to move forward with my life, the past
is still the past, that hasn’t changed but I feel more able to cope than I did.”
Loss is also associated with bereavement but loss can be experienced in relation to the end of a relationship, job, dream or ideal. The loss of hope is a major factor in depression, below is an example of the five stages of loss
- Denial: Denial is a conscious or unconscious refusal to accept facts, information, reality, etc., relating to the situation concerned. It’s a defense mechanism and perfectly natural. It is easy for people to become stuck at this stage when dealing with traumatic events.
- Anger: Anger can manifest in different ways. People dealing with emotional upset can be angry with themselves, and/or with others, especially those close to them. Anger can also be expressed towards the deceased.
- Bargaining: Traditionally the bargaining stage for people facing death can involve attempting to bargain with whatever ‘god’ the person believes in. Bargaining rarely provides a sustainable solution, especially if it’s a matter of life or death.
- Depression: This stage is characterized by feelings of sadness and regret, fear, uncertainty, etc. This is an indication that the person has at least begun to accept the reality of the loss.
- Acceptance: This stage symbolizes emotional detachment and objectivity. The grieving individual is beginning to come to terms with their loss. The bereaved make an effort to move on with life.
Sex and Love Addiction
Two things to understand about sex and love addiction : It’s NOT about sex and you are not alone!
Sex addiction, is any sexual activity that feels out of control. People feel compelled to act on their thoughts, get court in destructive cycle of behaviour that can cause them and their families grate distress.
Love addicts, on the other hand, become dependent on the emotional stability provided by romantic partners. Love addicts may often have low self-esteem and a lack self-worth. They may present with obsessive, controlling behaviours, affairs or multiple relationships.
Recovery, the recovery process for sex and love addicts is similar to that of substance addictions. It involves facing your addiction, naming it, identifying the possible root causes, exploring the thoughts, feelings and behaviours that perpetuate any destructive behaviours while challenging these behaviours with companion.
“After talking to a friend of mine, she recommended that I spoke to a therapist. I laughed at her and said “I am not mad”… Now I understand why she said what she said. It’s been hard work trying to make sense of why I behaved the way I did, but it’s been worth it. I now feel more in control of my life.”
Here at the Therapy Life Centre, we have an Integrative Psychotherapist who is also a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist, Julian Hayes.