Making the choice to seek a therapist can be a difficult one or one that finds comfort in knowing that you’re not alone. After dealing with years of anxiety and just moving to the area, I decided to find an anxiety support group to meet other individuals who were going through anxiety and seeking support in the mental health community. I found Irving through the ADAA website and emailed him; I was met with an immediate response to come to the support group he mediated every week. I was terrified to walk into my first support group but was beyond glad I did. I was able to share my anxiety and mental health story, receive support, and give support to others from all walks of life in their experiences. After about a month of anxiety support group, I decided to see Irving on an individual basis.
Seeing Irving individually, in conjunction with support group, has helped me to understand my anxiety by exploring my thought process and addressing methods to combat what anxiety does to me. Irving always makes our sessions client based while giving insight and understanding of what it means to be an anxiety sufferer. For the past year, I have opened up more than I thought I would about my anxiety disorder and worked towards overcoming small feats such as journaling my thoughts, working through anxiety attacks, and setting long term goals. I never thought I would be where I am today and it’s definitely because of Irving’s time, patience, and understanding of the work in this field.
Irving Schattner is not only an intelligent, trustworthy and dedicated therapist, he genuinely cares about the well-being of his clients. He was always reachable when I needed to speak with him and I could count on him to provide sound, professional guidance. Irving really took the time to understand me. I would recommend him to a close friend or family member without hesitation.
I am a member of Irving Schattner’s anxiety group held on Tues. evenings. I have been with Irving for about 9 months now, in private sessions as well as in the group, and the benefits are evident to me: I’m calmer, more aware of my behavior, less afraid and, as a result, a better person for it. Therapy is my “life line”!!
This letter is to thank you for the help that you have provided my husband and I during a difficult period in our lives. Due to severe illness life became difficult, unmanageable and hard to accept. Walls went up between us, and then we met you! From the first visit, I saw a difference and our capacity to cope, to communicate and to things in perspective. I remember once being on the Board of Directors, and someone said he was worried because he had heard that some of us had been in therapy. Answered back by saying,”we really should worry about is if anyone has never been to therapy.” In your sessions, there is nothing described as wrong, it’s all about dignity, new beginnings, and breaking down filters. Your professionalism and your kindness has helped us thrive as a couple.
I’ve struggled with anxiety for many years, which fueled my addiction to pain pills. They made my anxiety diminish, and helped me feel more comfortable. Little did I know that this was a fast road to a miserable existence. Social interactions made me uncomfortable, which fueled chronic depression when I was off the drugs. To put it plainly, I was a mess from a mental health standpoint.
I was broken and ready to give up, but as a last-ditch effort I reached out for help and found Irving Schattner, LCSW, the director and founder of the Counseling Center for Growth and Recovery, in Delray Beach, Florida. With his multi-faceted treatment approach and a caring, genuine perspective, I was nursed back to mental wellness on my road to recovery.
I remember the first time I walked into Mr. Schattner’s office, I was extremely anxious and uneasy. I had successfully completed a detox program so my body was off the drugs, but my mind was craving them to feel better mentally. I did not know how to live life on it’s own terms, without resorting to substance abuse. While I removed the drugs from my system, I was left an empty shell of a person, scared to interact with others and plagued by a history of addiction, anxiety, and depression.
The treatment philosophy pioneered by the Counseling Center for Growth and Recovery, under the direction of Mr. Schattner himself, focuses on getting to the root causes of your emotional or psychological distress. I learned that feeling anxious and depressed at the same time is a common condition, and can be healed through exposure and response prevention therapy.
Together, we examined my negative thoughts and beliefs through cognitive therapy and it’s connection to my self-sabotaging behaviors with cognitive-behavioral therapy. I learned how to challenge these negative thoughts and beliefs, which lead me toward achieving the things I wanted, which was freedom from the anxiety and depression that crippled my life and fueled my addiction.
I learned to face my fears, instead of running away from them and numbing myself with drugs. We practiced a variety of life skills and Mr. Schattner helped me feel comfortable in my own skin again. Slowly but surely, my confidence and self-esteem increased after each session, and I was able to venture out into public and social gatherings without the fear of rejection.
After attending face-to-face individual counseling sessions for some time, we transitioned to online counseling sessions via an internet connection. I used my iPad for video therapy sessions without the need to drive to the practice itself.
This allowed for a continued personalized experience but from the privacy and safety of home. It was much more convenient and I felt ready for this natural progression in my level of care. I still attend Mr. Schattner’s online counseling sessions today and the therapy I receive continues to help me become a stronger person.
I’ve found purpose and meaning in my life instead of dwelling on the unknown and wasting my life away in fear. If you’re struggling with addiction, anxiety, or depression, then you’ve come to the right place.
The first step is to find the courage to reach out for help and I know it’s hard because I hated changes in my life or even asking people for anything. But for me it was life or death, as continuing my miserable existence would have certainly not ended well. If I can find the courage to ask for help, then you can too.