My specialty as a therapist? Working with men. Especially men who have never been to counseling and never imagined they would.
Someone once told me at a party: Guys don’t go to therapy. I beg to differ. A majority of my practice is filled with men who are struggling with their unique issues and developing into better people.
All the rules have changed. Being a man used to be simple. Gender roles were clearly and rigidly defined. But today? It’s a lot more complicated.
We must be vulnerable but strong. Confident but not cocky. Loving but not soft. It is not uncommon for some men to not just keep their emotions hidden but they may not even know what they are feeling. There can be a disconnect when it comes to men knowing how they feel, opening up in their relationships, or allowing themselves to be sensitive.
Therapy with men’s issues is a specialization. While each man is different, there are some common issues of
- The need for male friendship
- Difficulty achieving intimacy and the need for intimacy
- Modern masculinity / gender roles
- Establishing and respecting boundaries
- Issues around sexuality, monogamy and what it means to “be a man.”
In a society in which men are expected to be strong and impervious to emotional stress, it is difficult to seek help. But help can be found as we learn from one another and challenge ourselves to carve out a place in the world that allows us to meet our personal needs while honoring ourselves.