Is Text-Based Therapy for You?

Text-based therapy is a type of online counselling. It uses typed text to communicate. Users take it in turns to type.

Format may be as in Skype, Windows Live Messenger, Yahoo Messenger and other similar programs.

In text-based therapy, you don’t need a microphone or webcam. That makes it one of the most accessible types of online therapy.

Once, I had an American soldier client suffering from PTSD. He was sidelined to an Asian country to recuperate.

Using text based therapy was useful for him in therapy because he did not feel the need for face to face contact.

He found it easier to write his thoughts rather than speaking them. Also, it was good for him who had difficulties with privacy … and was daily at home alone.

Yes you can choose text-based online therapy! It may be a best fit for your current life situation and issues.

Discovering the Best Psychotherapy

Recently, I read of this article by a psychiatrist who was critical and disappointed of his own profession. He found from his research that as much as 70% of depressed people who consulted psychiatrists were so minimally or not helped at all.

Interestingly, he noted from his study that over 80% who consulted a minister gained significant relief. Such particularly disturbed the psychiatrist for his profession was into helping people and yet it’s not making a desired difference.

One middle-aged single woman’s depression and addictions drove her to psychotherapy. Her previous years of psychiatric drug use and hospital confinement were so ineffective that it made things worst for her. Lately, she became promiscuous and had sex with different men within just a month.

When she came to me, she was overwhelmingly depressed. She’s attempting suicide. She’s not only depressed but staggering under an overburden of guilt. In addition, she was pregnant. For the years of psychiatric treatment, she should buy drugs and pay other services to house her?

There must be a better way!

While we may not hesitate to go to a cardiologist or surgeon for our physical ailments, a “doctor of the mind” is something else. The meaning of the word “psychotherapy” comes from the original Greek roots “psuche” and “therapepuo” which means “mind/soul healing.”

God’s ways are not man’s ways (Isaiah 55:8,9). In the real healing of mind and soul, only God’s ways apply. Therefore, we should not be surprised when the theories of Freud, Skinner, Adler, Yalom, and others are diametrically opposed to God’s ways as stated in Scripture.

Humanistic psychologists or drug-based psychiatrists have no or little to offer by way of genuine psychotherapy. They’re committed to helping people with only the humanistic or physical tools/concepts available to them. Both humanism and science (man-centered) try to solve mankind’s problems independent of God.

What is the best psychotherapy? Jesus said, “Without Me, you can do nothing.” (John 15:5) If you’re healing in the areas of mind, emotions, and soul, particularly those that spill over into life values, you’ll have to know God and His healing principles.

Transcending Death

Working as a therapist, “hints” of death and its accompanying anxiety are never absent. I hardly get through my sessions without sensing a cry for help from individuals hurt by dire consequences and relationships.

It’s not private bias or indulgence on my part. It’s a universal concern we all have as human beings.

This “death anxiety” though is often invisible. A male patient in his early 40s told me about his much younger cousin who died recently of cancer. After learning it, he suddenly felt a rushing in his panic attacks.

Once while inside an airplane, everything was well when he took his seat. Then suddenly, he became so uneasy and felt, “This plane is where I am and it’s about to crash!” No amount of care from his wife or plane assistants could calm his anxiety and fear.

We have two choices to deal with “invisible death anxiety.” We either face the truth directly or we try to flee the anxious feelings and not attempt to come to terms with it. I think the latter response appears more common in modern times.

In the “Hour of Death,” author Philippe Aries writes, “Except for the death of statesmen, society has banished death. In the towns, there is no way of knowing that something has happened … Society no longer observes a pause; the disappearance of an individual no longer affects it’s continuity.”

Ernest Becker, in his “The Denial of Death,” describes the reality of the human condition. He says, “Man is a worm and food for the worms. This is the paradox; he is out of nature and hopelessly in it; he is dual … Literally split in two… He sticks out of nature with a towering majesty and yet goes back into the ground a few feet … to rot and disappear forever. It is a terrifying dilemma to be in and have to live with.”

Thus to make invisible our inherent death anxiety makes little sense. Our society focuses us more on the “economic” or “making a living.” Such conditions us to deny or be unprepared to dying. Yet we all need to face the reality of it to live well.

Free from the non-essentials of life or unnecessary personal disabilities. Free from “denying the problem,” “immature defenses,” “distortion of our reactions,” or projecting fears to things or persons.

Death anxiety is not beyond human control. If it’s made visible and faced head-on, it can bring much quality of life. Especially in light of our limited years. I believe the measure of a good life is how we view and transcend our own death.

Do You Need Financial Therapy?

Everyone of us has a psychological and spiritual relationship with money.

This relationship is not born. It’s bred. Beginning from childhood, the source of our beliefs and “scripts” about money developed over time in our minds.

The relationship we have with money is a result of slow, significant accumulation of lessons we absorb from the adults around us.

If our experiences of money are not healthy but rather painful or traumatic, they easily become the foundation of our financial struggles in adulthood.

Unconsciously, when wounds are left unprocessed, we may come to associate money with anxiety, crisis, or void in relationships.

Albert’s confusion over money persisted for many years during his adulthood. Until he got bankrupt. Zero. Nothing, even the basics.

Borrowing millions from his family, relatives, and friends, he pursued a business to earn big money. He did so for he needed to be independent of his parents.

But as soon as he earned profits, he spent it as fast as he earned it on women, drugs, and gambling.

In my work with Albert, we touched on his money “script.”

He didn’t see the connection then but his mother had serious issues with money when he was growing up.

His father, on the other hand, was hands off her mother’s financial habits even if he disagreed with her.

Albert remembered how his mother would always complain about not having enough money. But then, he’d watch her spend like crazy, go on shopping sprees, traveling overseas, and buying expensive stuff.

So here, as a result, Albert grew up having no real concept of finances. The discipline of wise spending, saving, making money work for you, or knowing how to manage it …that was beyond Albert.

Maybe you see a bit of your self in Albert. Maybe not.

But all of us have early life event or series of events associated with money. They leave “scripts” or imprints that can last into adulthood.

Do you see some of your own money “scripts” or imprints?

If you struggle with spending, saving, budgeting, paying off debts, severe luxury or frugality, gambling, or other money “scripts,” financial therapy could help.

Financial therapy can help you recognize and change psychological, emotional, and spiritual patterns you have about money that aren’t serving you.

To help you start, you may take advantage of a free one-hour financial therapy consultation session that I have with individuals, couples, groups on an appointment-basis.

Just drop a note at +63 9090833374 or email psychotherapy@drsubida.com if you want to avail of the free one-hour financial therapy session.

(Note: Your personal financial therapy evaluation letter from Dr. Subida comes in a handsome form …plus practical takeaways!)

Healing a Troubled Marriage

Every human being is designed to love and be loved. Things are designed to be used.

A big reason why much in our relationships are in chaos is because we use people and things are ones loved by us.

I’ve once a married couple in therapy that lasted for about a year. Both of them came from very wealthy families.

Their lives together is laced with separate businesses, bank accounts, and managed properties. They “profit” from each other’s ventures.

In my working with them in our sessions, I could not be sure if marriage is truly the best word to describe their relationship. You see, since marriage, they never “dated.” Sex stopped for decades. They lived their lives as if they’re co-dorm mates.

Until one day. The wife discovered her husband having affairs with multiple women. One of them was housed in one of their condominium properties. Their world crashed. And both of them declared they still “love” each other.

It’s a deep mess. The unfaithful husband apologized for his betrayal. He assured his wife that he was letting go of the other women. And he agreed to his wife’s requirement for them to go through personal and marital therapy.

Both of their lives had not been easy despite their families’ affluence. They told me repeatedly of tales of abandonment, the drugs, the alcohol, and the lonely nights that define their past.

They speak of dysfunction freely of their families of origin. It was as much a part of their story as what happened to them in their relationship.

In therapy, they developed emergent awareness and honesty. When they’d learned to be honest, they’d become aware that much of their relationship with each other is focused on “things.” They used each other to increase these “things.”

And in the course of doing so, they missed each other’s persons.

Indeed, our pockets may be full. But our hearts are empty. Love people, not things. It’s the path to better living, your best self and relationships ever.

Money and Mental Health

Howard, a senior citizen, hoards. He stashes money in the bank, which he says is for his future. He does not want to let his adult children know about it. So when he flies away, his children will not be aware of any of their father’s huge savings.

In the meantime, Howard makes his children feel obligated to give to him a monthly allowance. He always feel insecure and worried regarding his material needs.

Money often reveals your state of mental health. Money “drug” can be like sex, power, alcohol or marijuana. The more you lust, the more you become dissatisfied! It never stands still. It keeps grasping.

It is addictive. To be fulfilled, you’ve to keep increasing the dosage of this drug-of-choice. That’s when it develops into a kind of mental health problem we can call “greed.”

In Howard’s case, the problem is not the saving of money. There are indeed times in our lives that need economy. The problem is the greed that motivates the saving of money.

This greed is both psychological and emotional as much as it’s also spiritual. The anxiety over money that underlies the hoarding has much deeper roots that need to be attended to.