Therapy for Adults
Our Therapy Approach
With the number of psychologists at Bryn Mawr Psychological Associates we have professionals with expertise in treating the vast majority of mental health challenges. We commonly provide treatment in the full range of anxiety and mood disorders. We also help with relationship challenges, workplace issues, anger, sleep disturbance, recurring distress about long-standing issues, bereavement, coping with chronic medical conditions, sports psychology, etc.
Some of our psychologists are experienced in working with adults with ASD. We help parents with their children and family problems and we work with couples. For some, their main desire is to have the opportunity to speak confidentially with a compassionate, experienced psychologist about the variety of challenges, past and present, that they face in their lives.
Bryn Mawr Psychological Associates provides therapy to adults of all ages. The initial evaluation provides an opportunity for you and your psychologist to meet each other and to start the process of discussing the issues of concern to you. Your therapist will talk with you about your background, family, and current day life in order to get a comprehensive understanding of the difficulties for which you are seeking support. By the end of the initial appointment there should be direction and planning for how therapy can be of benefit to you. You should have a good sense when you leave the first session that your psychologist can help you.
Ongoing therapy sessions are typically scheduled once a week or once every other week in the early months. Often this changes to an "as needed" basis of less frequency as improvement is achieved. Our primary treatment orientation is Cognitive Behavorial Therapy (CBT) although other orientations are often utilized. Our primary goal is to help all adults who meet with us to develop effective coping skills, and to reclaim their happiness and sense of fulfillment.
Parenting and Family Therapy
Parents with children of all ages seek therapy from us for difficult matters regarding their children. Many times parents are looking for reassurance as to whether or not their child’s behavior is within the normal range and will improve all on its own. For parents of very young children there are often concerns about eating, sleeping, separation anxiety, and managing tantrums. Parents of school age children seek a wide variety of services for behavioral, emotional, and educational concerns outlined in the Child and Adolescent section. Peer issues, academic struggles, perfectionism, violation of house rules, substance use, and family conflict are frequent concerns of parents with adolescents.
Middle-age and older adults sometimes face stressful issues of troubling romantic relationships of their children and multigenerational conflicts involving their children and grandchildren.
Click here for much more detailed information on our services for parents/families/children.
It is fairly common throughout the year for college students or their parents to reach out to us from long distance to inquire about the benefit of counseling and how best to follow through with that. Some students are already seeing therapists in their home states and are looking to transfer their therapy locally. We are happy to converse with any parent or student to see if one of our psychologists who treats college students can be of help.
There are many excellent colleges in close proximity to Bryn Mawr Psychological Associates. Our practice is accessible by car, train, and walking (depending upon the college). College is a time of excitement and new experiences for young people but also a time of new stressors such as balancing relationships, academic independence, sports psychology, easy access to substances, and less personal support/guidance from parents.
Some students come to college with known challenges such as substance use, academic challenges, mood or anxiety disorders, ADHD, and Aspergers. Often parents do not learn that a difficult situation has developed until after their college-age young adult is experiencing serious academic issues sometimes preceded by other significant concerns such as avoiding classes, escalated substance use, excessive gaming, withdrawal from their peers, or having gotten into a problematic relationship.
Some of the most common reasons for young adults to seek psychological services include relationship issues, problems with job/career, stress, anger, and problems with substance use. This is also a time that young adults often struggle with psychological issues such as depression, anxiety, and ADD. Sleep, family relationships, studying, romantic relationships, and judgment can all be adversely affected.
Adults cope daily with a wide range of internal and environmental stressors and most of the time are capable of doing so. However, sometimes the stressors become too overwhelming or may be worsened by a health or work crisis leading to psychological strain beyond what may be manageable without additional support. Distressing situations with children, aging parents, or marital problems are often a contributing factor.
Loneliness, lack of social support, family conflict, anxiety, and sleep problems are common symptoms resulting from the above issues. Many adults seek therapy to converse with an objective, supportive, trained psychologist and to develop strategies for overcoming their distress. Some adults attend just a few sessions while others with long-standing emotional or personal issues continue to work with a psychologist for an extended time.
Couples/Marital counseling is one of the most common reasons people seek therapy and one of the most challenging to treat. Each partner brings a unique history with finances, relatives, intimacy, etc., into the relationship. The marriage can then face further challenges of child-rearing, health concerns, work-life balance and/or concerns about infidelity. Often communication and closeness break down and everyday interactions become painful.
Providing a safe and objective setting for partners to talk with each other with careful therapeutic intervention is essential for good progress in therapy. At times much can be gained in just a few sessions and for others the work is more involved. Therapeutic goals include healthy communication, transcending the past, respect for the needs of involved children, and determining best choices for the future.
Sleep disorders are a growing concern as experts and the public become increasingly aware of the physical and emotional health problems associated with poor quality sleep. Insomnia, sleep deprivation, chronic early awakening, sleep-phase disorders, and sleep disordered breathing are some of the more common examples. Bryn Mawr Psychological is fortunate to have a sleep disorder specialist on staff, Dr. Jacqueline Kloss, who has nearly two decades of research, teaching, and treatment (specifically CBTi) in the realm of sleep problems.
Click here for more information on getting help for insomnia and other sleep disorders.
We work with adults who are newly retired as well as those in their 80’s and 90’s. Older adults seek therapy for a wide range of issues including coping with the change that retirement brings, anxiety, significant health issues, marital concerns, loss of a spouse, and loneliness. Meeting with a psychologist is often a new experience for senior adults. However, they often report appreciation for the opportunity to talk over their concerns in a comfortable, supportive atmosphere and to gather additional perspective.
Adult High Functioning ASD
A common referral to our practice is for young adults who are high functioning on the autism spectrum and struggling with progressing successfully in college, employment, or independent living. Our psychologists gather the parent concerns and sometimes they also attend the initial appointment. Prior reports are often reviewed so that we can make use of those assessments. Our work with young adults on the spectrum is generally focused on the concerns that they bring to us which may include any of the following: Stress in their family relationships, problems with their sleep cycle, navigating romantic relationships, depressed mood, executive functioning problems, cognitive flexibility, OCD, loneliness, tech addiction, finding work, and independent living.
Young adults on the spectrum are attending college in record numbers. Sometimes the stresses associated with all the changes of being at college becomes overwhelming and the student can benefit from the support of a psychologist with expertise in treating ASD. We also treat adults on the spectrum who are struggling with stress and difficulties in the work setting. Lastly, we provide brief, expert assessments of adults of all ages who are questioning whether they may be on the Spectrum.
Click here for information about brief Adult ASD evaluations.
It is not uncommon for adults with ADD/ADHD to struggle with some of the following: Emotional regulation, organizational skills, impulsive behavior, procrastination, forgetfulness, low self-esteem, and sometimes substance use problems. These challenges frequently have an adverse impact on personal relationships at home and performance issues in the workplace and at college. Several of our psychologists provide therapy for adults seeking help with these concerns.
Requests for brief Adult ADHD evaluations come from adults of all ages, their parent or spouse, or their physician. Sometimes there is a desire/curiosity to see if the diagnosis fits. At other times an assessment is requested to help determine if the criteria for diagnosis is met so that the client might pursue accommodations or a medication evaluation with their physician.
This evaluation generally consists of completion of standardized rating forms of ADHD and Executive Functioning symptoms, interview of the client, gathering data from a family member if indicated, and gathering data about symptoms and functioning in childhood. Sometimes a letter confirming the results for the physician is requested.
Click here for information about Adult ADHD evaluations.