bill slaughter md
Integrative, holistic support for
development and health of the adult psyche
Services & Approach
I work with adults (from individuals alone to couples and larger numbers of people in relationship--families, etc.) by psychotherapy (talking and non-verbal communications with the aim of facilitating positive changes) and medications. Increasing integration of consciousness/thinking, emotional, and deeper, more subtle parts of the self can evolve through this, with a more meaningful and free sense of one's life gradually following. Below are very brief thumbnail sketches of some aspects of the work. The "Resources links" tab gives connections to more in-depth information on specific traditions I work from as well as other sources.
An initial consultation can be as brief as one long initial session (1 hour 15 minutes), or extend over a few sessions. The goal is make recommendation on possible ways to continue on, including referring to other providers/paths/resources. Sometimes I have time to meet with people who are meeting various possible therapists/treatment providers for 15-20 minutes without charge.
Psychotherapy and analysis are general terms for ongoing personal interaction meant to facilitate change. This can be short-term--a few sessions or months--or longer-term, over the course of years. The more temperamentally core and longstanding the habitual patterns are which a person wishes to change, the longer and deeper the process will generally be.
Traditional Western psychodynamic understandings of people emphasize differences between various parts of a person's makeup, conscious and unconscious, often heavily influenced by formative life experiences. Increasing insight into varying motivations, desires and past experiences, as well as the interpersonal field during sessions, can lead to innovative new solutions more adapted to a person's current life and future.
Contemplative (mindful and aware) approaches to therapy have grown over the past 50 years to the forefront of current healing/helping culture. This was spurred by influence of Buddhist and other Asian traditions after the Second World War and has helped rekindle interest in meditative traditions within the Judeo-Christian-Muslim tradition. An emphasis here is on cultivating awareness, including directly teaching observation of one's mind (including emotions and physical sensation) and techniques for skillful living. Acknowledgement of basic goodness and compassion as core aspects of being human are part of contemplative practice. Sometimes this can be narrowed to specific cognitive/dialectical-behavorial exercises and meditation-based interventions.
My way of working with dream material tends to follow the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung and others across cultures and times in looking for perspectives from deeper and broader parts of the self which can augment a person's conscious self-awareness. This often includes personal, collective, shadow, and other unconscious aspects of who we are which are trying to synthesize with our waking selves. Gradual incorporation of this material into consciousness can profoundly enrich one's life.
Some people are interested in seeing if a medication approach--synergistically with other approaches above, or alone--might be of help. Others aren't interested in medications--including people who have had difficult experiences with them and want to avoid a repeat. Stigmatization of medication use, personal changes--or conversely no or slow response, adverse effects, and above all the exquisite uniqueness of each individual body-mind are some essential aspects we cover if considering this approach.
The wide range of holistic brain-self conditions which medications can be helpful with include actions, memories and other thoughts which are repetitive and significantly disturbing, intrusive and/or unwanted: anxiety, depression, inpulsivity, low energy; attentional deficits; mental-emotional responses to hormonal changes; disturbing experiences seeing and hearing things which others do not; sleep problems; undesired substance abuse/dependence, and so on.