Coping with the First Weeks of Grief

 

Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D.
Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D.

For many years, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., has been a practicing psychotherapist in Rockville, Maryland. Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., has treated numerous individuals struggling with the effects of grief and loss.

When a loved one dies, the bereaved person’s mind often goes into a state of shock and detachment, which serves to separate him or her from the reality of the loss. To many people, this feels like numbness or living in a fog. Sometimes, they feel that they are moving through the world on autopilot, making final arrangements without fully experiencing what is going on.

Many people find this period of numbness extremely frustrating, as it causes them to struggle with daily tasks, to focus on work or school requirements. It is important to remember, however, that shock functions as an adaptive mechanism that allows the reality of the situation to set in slowly. Many people find that the pain of loss descends gradually as the numbness dissipates so that the full experience of grief does not arrive all at once but in manageable stages.

Experts recommend that a grieving person make his or her way through numbness and detachment slowly and with plenty of self-compassion. For some it may be necessary to take some time away from the world to rest, though most people find it more soothing to actively participate in funeral arrangements and proceedings or partake with post funeral bereavement rituals in a group to the best of their ability, so that when the fog lifts, they feel others understood and supported them, that they did not forget their loved one and had a chance to share their grief with caring family and friends.

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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder – Symptoms and Treatment

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder pic
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
Image: webmd.com

A Maryland-based psychologist with more than three decades of experience, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., assists couples, children, families, and groups by way of his private practice in Rockville. Over the course of his career, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., has helped patients work through a variety of issues, including anxiety, depression, emotional dysregulation, and identity issues. He also invested much work with people suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD).

As the name suggests, OCD is a disorder characterized by obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors. Although many people will experience overly focused thoughts and deal with repetitive behaviors from time to time, this does not mean that they have OCD. Those who do have the disorder encounter obsessions and compulsions so extreme that they alter their daily lives and suffer distressing feelings such as fear, doubt, disgust, and anxiety.

While obsessions and compulsions usually go hand-in-hand, it’s important to note that people with OCD may experience only obsessive symptoms or only compulsive symptoms. Common obsessions among those with the disorder include unwanted or extreme sexual or religious thoughts as well as fears of contamination, imperfection, losing control, or harming others. In many cases, these obsessions lead to compulsive behaviors such as constant cleaning, repetitive talk or actions, continuous ordering and arranging, and persistent checking.

Symptoms of OCD typically manifest fully for the first time in adolescence or early adulthood, but many with the disorder begin to experience symptoms in childhood. Typical treatment may include a combination of medication and cognitive behavioral therapy. OCD patients often have other co-existing conditions that also require treatment.

A Brief Overview of Viktor Frankl’s Life and Work

Viktor Frankl  pic
Viktor Frankl
Image: viktorfrankl.org

With a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, Uzi Ben-Ami has served as a licensed psychologist in Maryland for more than 30 years. Outside of his Rockville, Maryland-based practice, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., spends his free time traveling, listening to classical music, and reading. He particularly enjoys the work of Viktor Frankl.

An Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist, Viktor Frankl survived the Holocaust after spending more than three years in concentration camps, during World War II. Following the war, Frankl continued his work in neurology, and psychology – much of which was related to his Holocaust experiences. he worked from 1946-70, as the director of the Vienna Neurological Policlinic. During that time, he also served as a visiting professor at several American universities, including Harvard.

A prolific writer throughout his lifetime, Frankl authored 40 books that now appear in nearly 50 languages. Much of his written work focuses on logotherapy and existential analysis, a form of psychotherapy he developed which emphasizes the role of a sense of meaning and purpose in life. One of Frankl’s last books, “Man’s Search for Meaning”, was named one of the 10 most influential books in America. Frankl is also listed with Freud and Adler as one of the most influential psychotherapists of the 20th century. Since his death in 1997, dozens of authors have published books about his life and work.

The Papers – Spielberg’s Newest Film

Steven Spielberg pic
Steven Spielberg
Image: imdb.com

Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., applies more than 30 years of experience to his private psychology practice in Rockville, Maryland. As a trained cognitive behaviorist, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., works with individuals, couples, and families. Aside from his professional responsibilities, Dr. Ben-Ami’s hobbies include reading, photography, and watching movies, particularly films directed by Steven Spielberg.

The Papers, a new movie directed by Steven Spielberg, recently began production in New York City. Starring Oscar-winning actors Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, the film tells the story of the Pentagon Papers, which were released to the public in 1971.

As controversy swirled around the Vietnam War, the United States Department of Defense embarked on a study of the US political and military involvement in Vietnam from 1945 to 1967. Included in the 47-volume study was evidence of four federal administrations’ misleading of the public regarding the US involvement in Vietnam’s struggle against communism. Harry S. Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon Johnson were specifically mentioned.

Military analyst Daniel Ellsberg copied portions of the papers and gave them to the New York Times for publication. The US Department of Justice immediately obtained a temporary restraining order against the newspaper to prevent future publications in the interest of national security. The Washington Post and other national newspapers joined the New York Times in defense of the First Amendment.

Spielberg has assembled a stellar cast to bring this historic event to life on the big screen. Tom Hanks will play Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee, and Meryl Streep will play the Post’s publisher Kay Graham. The film is set to be released in December 2017.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy – A Brief Overview

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy pic
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Image: cogbtherapy.com

An experienced licensed psychologist, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., has been working with patients in Maryland for over three decades. Skilled in helping children, couples, and families, Uzi Ben-Ami, Ph.D., works to address anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other mental health issues using methods such as cognitive behavioral therapy.

Developed in the 1960s by psychiatrist Aaron Beck, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a goal-oriented psychotherapeutic treatment that helps patients explore the ways that thoughts and feelings influence their behavior. The initial goal of CBT is to help patients identify and acknowledge the patterns of thinking that are contributing to their difficulties. Then, patients can work with their therapist to reshape negative thinking and set goals toward ultimately changing the way they feel.

Although CBT is a short-term treatment method, it involves a progressive and gradual process that requires patients to play an active role in changing their behavior. In addition to participating in regular face-to-face sessions with their therapist, CBT patients are often asked to read, journal, and participate in other activities outside of therapy sessions. An effective psychotherapeutic treatment, CBT has been shown to help individuals overcome a range of issues, including phobias, addictions, and relationship problems.