Holistic Depth Psychotherapy - Nicole Ann Ditz, MA CMHC

Purple flower

N Ditz

"The bud
stands for all things,
even for those things that don't flower,
for everything flowers,
from within,
of self-blessing;
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within,
of self-blessing...."

~ Galway Kinnell

My Healing Philosophy

Re-parenting & The Third Ear:

Human beings develop a healthy core sense of self through the developmental process of having primary caregivers who are sensitively attuned to the child's changing needs, perceptions, and emotions and who accurately mirror these emerging attributes of the nascent self back to the child. The child eventually comes to know who he/she is through the intersubjective process of having been regularly recognized, understood, and empathically responded to by parent(s) or significant others. When this process has gone awry due to parental deficits, trauma, and other emotionally toxic or insufficient growing conditions, the childís unfolding selfhood is often adversely affected like a stunted plant that is unable to flourish or that can only put out weak blooms.

Psychological impoverishment and dysfunction in childhood attachment relationships can significantly impact the individual's developing personality, self-concept, and even his/her neurobiological wellness. Psychological "lesions" can manifest at every level of being, resulting in myriad forms of emotional, cognitive and psychophysiological impairment and suffering. The person often experiences, to a greater or lesser extent, a type of "failure to thrive".

For many people, the therapeutic relationship has been the first experience of feeling consistently empathically understood and emotionally supported. The person undergoes a slow evolution of internalizing the care, compassion and interpretive functions that the therapist provides until he/she can eventually hold himself in a benevolent fashion as well as see herself more accurately through new eyes as beautiful, worthy, competent, and inherently lovable.

The faithful emotional attunement a therapist provides for her clients can create a singular type of salubrious corrective emotional experience that can resolve, over much time, old childhood wounds and detrimental defense styles woven into the woof and warp of the adult personality. A key focus in my mission as a therapist is helping my clients to gradually develop their own Internalized Wise Adult Self who can take over providing the many psychological functions such as empathy, insight, guidance, soothing, understanding and emotional support that I once provided for them.

Abstract image

N Ditz

The Third Ear

"The psychoanalyst has to learn how one mind speaks to another beyond words and in silence. He must learn to listen 'with the third ear.' It is not true that you have to shout to make yourself understood. When you wish to be heard, you whisper... It appears to us more important to recognize what speech conceals and what silence reveals."

~ Theodor Reik

For adults who have endured misshapen and broken down childhood nests, much of their emotional wounding can be stored in pre-verbal, dissociated, and somatic memories that may be expressed only indirectly and often without the linguistic scaffolding of words. These wounds may then be enacted and communicated through highly camouflaged nonverbal language: silent screams of visceral sensations, fickle fractions of facial expressions, tonal textures of voice, twists and turns of posture, staccato sounds of breath, flinch and flutters of gaze, slips of mute movement, and many other loudquiet incarnations.

A central feature of the healing art of being a psychotherapist for me is cultivating the capacity to intensively listen with my "third ear" and to connect with another human being on multiple levels within a single heartbeat of time. I try to become a human tuner, harmonizing with the otherís particular subliminal frequencies from several perceptual and sensate doorways: hearing with my eyes, seeing with my ears, tasting with my muscles, touching with my breath, smelling with my intuition. Once I viscerally and empathically contact the otherís silent, buried and lost places, I attempt to reflect back to the individual his once obscured self- fragments so that they might be healed and re-integrated into his current sense of being.

In short, I attempt to help the person embody her "unthought known" in the papoose of language, and we dialogue and connect until what is darkly sensed can be brought forth into the light of conscious and experiential awareness. The exploration of the hidden also includes our immersion in the person's internal river of primary process subjectivity which may include dreams, fantasies, loosely woven associative memories, imagery, impulses and intuitions.

This intimate choreography supports the slow repair of psychological holes in the mangled nest of Self. A sense of mastery, relief, and freedom is increasingly experienced as overwhelming sensations are defined, organized, and assimilated into a present experience of coherent selfhood. The individual now becomes more able to translate, embrace, and transcend the blooming, buzzing confusion within. In addition to this, the scales of restrictive "false self" identities and devitalizing defenses(e.g. "the self-sacrificing caretaker", "the nice girl", "the tough/stoic boy"), formed in accommodation to parental and societal demands, can be gradually loosened and peeled away- liberating the person's underlying sense of aliveness, spontaneity, and relaxed realness.

Nicole Ann Ditz, MA CMHC, Holistic Depth Psychotherapist

Voice Mail: (401) 573-6396  Email: info@holisticdepththerapy.com

Serving Rhode Island and Southeastern Connecticut