Howard Z. Lorber, LCSW
Psychotherapist & Anthropologist
My original work was as an Anthropologist studying religious movements, cults and alternative lifestyles of people going against the grain of their traditional cultures. Through this I became interested in how individuals live, adapt and change under stressful circumstances. And I became interested in helping people change and grow and live better lives. To do this more effectively, I retrained as a psychotherapist (Clinical Social Work & Certification in Psychoanalysis and Comprehensive Psychotherapy). I still consider myself to be a practicing Anthropologist a participant observer. This is reflected in my style of work which is interactive, present and oriented toward helping the person coming to me live better and attain better-adapted lives.
In my work Ive come to see that people want to be able to become intimate and connected to one another, but have developed many ways of stopping themselves. These frustrating mechanisms are the character traits called defenses: the ways we lean to adapt to emotional and social forces in the world of our childhood and. These defenses become built-in as habitual ways of acting and reacting. As we try to grow and develop, though, these we leaned to stay in the game as a child with our families, with peers stop working. They become the problem that keeps us from achieving our goal of being connected and intimate. The connections we do make are made at high emotional cost and are often loaded with tension, conflict and depression.
In my practice we work together individually, as couples, or in groups to uncover the ways connection and intimacy are frustrated and how we can become better able to be really present with others. In leaning to be more present the ability to make more and deeper connections is nurtured and developed. This work helps foster the capacity for commitment and for the intimacy we all desire.
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