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Patricia Escudero Rotman, Ph. D., LCSW, Clinical Psychologist (Arg.)

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Schema Therapy

Schema Therapy, created by Dr. Jeffrey Young, is the best integration of the three major well known psychological theories: Cognitive-Behavioral., Psychodynamic, and Gestalt (experiential). It has helped hundreds of patients to overcome chronic personality patterns. Many of these patients had shown little or no progress with other treatment modalities.

As a Schema therapist, I will help you to identify and change your main lifetraps or personality tendencies (schemas) which are principally responsible for your difficulties in attaining your desired personal and professional goals.

Schemas are our long standing beliefs and feelings about ourselves, the world, and others. We often continue to think, feel and act (or not act) in self defeating ways which in turn prolongs our suffering.

Our work together will help you to change these maladaptive schemas, feel better and get “unstuck” in your personal and work life. Schemas are not conscious and need to be slowly “chipped away” with diverse clinical interventions.

Some of these schemas are:

1) Abandonment/instability: you feel that people who are close and important to you will leave you and you will end up alone.

2) Mistrust/Abuse: you expect others will try to hurt you by abusing, humiliating, lying, manipulating, severely neglecting or taking advantage of you. You are always on guard.

3) Emotional Deprivation: you feel others do not care enough about you. You feel nobody understands you, listens to you, or is there to give you attention, nurturance, guidance and protection.

4) Defectiveness/Shame: you often feel there is something inherently wrong with you. You fear that if your defectiveness would be exposed people would reject you. Therefore you do your best to hide your flaws.

5) Social Isolation: you feel different from other people and feel that you do not belong to any group. You feel you don’t fit in anywhere.

6) Dependence/Incompetence: you often feel overwhelmed and unable to cope with life demands. You are likely to depend too much on other people’s advice and help.

7) Vulnerability: you constantly fear that something catastrophic will happen to you and that you will be unable to cope with it. Feared catastrophes include medical problems, going crazy or getting severely depressed., having an accident, etc.

8) Enmeshment/Undevelopped Self: you often feel overly involved with people you love and have a hard time knowing who you are and what your preferences are in life.

9) Failure: you believe that you have failed or will fail in one or more areas of achievement (school, sports, work). You believe that you do not have what it takes to succeed.

10) Entitlement/Grandiosity: you believe that you are superior to others so you deserve special privileges. You feel you should be doing whatever you want whenever you want. You often act in a controlling or competitive way.

11) Insufficient Self/Control/Self Discipline: you have difficulty sustaining effort to achieve your goals. You cannot avoid expressing your feelings and/or thoughts even if this expression has negative interpersonal consequences.

12) Subjugation: you often suppress your needs, preferences, opinions and emotions and allow other people to control you. You are likely to often feel trapped and powerless.

13) Self-Sacrifice: you often choose to put other people’s needs first, become a caretaker and are likely to have a hard time asking for help for yourself.

14) Approval-Seeking/Recognition Seeking: you focus too much on being approved, recognized or admired by others.

15) Negativity/Pessimism: you focus excessively on negative life events and minimize the positives. You constantly fear that if things are going well, something bad will end up happening.

16) Emotional Inhibition: you tend to suppress your emotions (especially anger) as well as spontaneous behavior. You highly value rationality over emotions. You often attempt to control other people’s expression of feelings.

17) Unrelenting Standards/Hypercriticalness: you often feel pressure (and pressure others) to perform at your (or their) best. You have difficulty relaxing and are hypercritical with yourself and others. You can never meet your own standards and end up exhausted and sometimes physically sick.

18) Punitiveness: you believe that people (including yourself) should not be easily forgiven when making a mistake, but harshly punished. You are judgmental and accept no excuses for wrong behavior.

I look forward to helping you identify and change your own specific schemas that may be sabotaging your potential to have a happy and fulfilling life. I hope you take action today and request your first consultation.