As a licensed mental health counselor I am consistently seeking to learn the best ways to help clients through whatever hardship they may be facing. A friend and fellow colleague in the field approached me about attending a training to become certified in an evidenced based approach to counseling and I couldn’t have been more excited! I’d heard about ART for several years, having had worked with the addictions population and also with trauma, and it had always been highly recommended.
In recent discussion I shared with a friend how, in the last year or two, I’ve encountered more and more clients who cannot answer the questions “who are you?” and “in what do you find your value and worth?” I’ve come to realize that a history of rejection is linked and found in each individual’s past.
God never intended us to feel rejection, however rejection is truly a perfect tool that the enemy uses to cause us to not only question our identity, but to steer us away from our identity in Christ. God desires for us to know who we truly are and for us to know His love and acceptance for us. If we are not rooted in love, as God has intended, how can we truly experience all that Christ has in store for us?
What comes to mind when I mention the words “premarital counseling”? To some, these words may trigger feelings of excitement to grow. For some, feelings of fear and not wanting to confront, and to others, possibly an assumption that something must be wrong with the relationship. These may happen and can be realities, but premarital counseling is not only necessary if you are unsure of marriage but also if you are looking to strengthen your future marriage.
Have you ever been in a situation that left you feeling like you did something wrong or that nothing you do is good enough? Maybe a situation that left you feeling excluded and wondering how you can fix it? What if I told you that often times situations, other’s behavior towards you, particular outcomes or whatever circumstances may actually have nothing to do with you.
There’s no other way to say it, but loss is painful. When we think about loss, we most often think of an actual passing, a loss that is identified with the individual or loved one no longer being here on Earth. I’d like to point out, however, that loss comes in many forms and, often times, those losses can feel almost as significant. In fact, you are experiencing a death of some kind; one that must also be grieved.
The way our minds process grief and loss truly is interesting. I recently heard that research studies have shown through brain scans that the loss of a relationship looks the same as an addict who is experiencing withdrawal. When our brains are missing what once was, the brain will release the same chemicals that indicate a “need” for whatever that “thing” is. We miss the familiarity, the comfort, the habits and the routine that the partner, job, drug, etc provided.