Psychotherapy: understanding the problem
Therapy, when practiced by therapists knowledgeable about LD, can help individuals boost their self worth by recognizing and confronting their learning disabilities. However, helping people with LD figure out why life isn’t good can be tricky. People can be anxious or depressed because of LD or can be anxious or depressed because of other events in their lives such as loss, trauma, neglect, abuse, etc. Or, the depression/anxiety can be the result of a chemical imbalance. It’s difficult to know.
To further complicate things, people may be depressed/anxious because of all of the above. For example, a person may have suffered a serious loss, and the mourning which follows may interfere with previous capacitities to compensate which now aren’t working so well. In this kind of situation, sometimes, just helping the person deal with the loss will allow compensations for LD to spring back. Sometimes, not.
Getting the right kind of help is crucial for someone with LD. It’s so easy to fall between the cracks of different professional disciplines. A psychotherapist can act as the hub of a wheel for a person. Talking about what makes one unhappy can tease out where the problems lie and the therapist can make appropriate referrals while making sure that the person’s emotional needs and self worth are protected.
The depressed or anxious person who feels safe enough to tell the therapist he can’t read and that’s why he looses jobs, may, (when the person is ready) be referred to an educational therapist. Or, the person who is suffering from massive anxiety may be referred to a psychiatrist who can help with medication while the therapist continues to be nurturing and enhancing.
The therapist and the individual can safely figure it out together.