01 Feb Faith and Therapy
Spirituality and faith can be an important part of healing, according to DeAnna McCaskill, a therapist and licensed social worker at Psych Choices. Ms. McCaskill helps people from all faith backgrounds and none, but if you are open to spirituality as part of your healing, she would love to help you explore that.
Ms. McCaskill has been working in the field since 1998, most of those years doing in-home family therapy with children, teens and families, and more recently, with hospitalized adults. “I always come from a strength-based approach,” she explains, “helping my clients to build on strengths they already have. And now I’m a pastor’s wife as well, and my spirituality and faith are a big part of my life that I can share with clients, if they are interested.” She knows how much faith can help, from personal experience.
“When I hit a very low point in my life a few years ago, after suffering a miscarriage, I remember being very angry,” Ms. McCaskill told me in a recent interview. “I was angry at God, and I kept asking ‘Why me?’ It didn’t seem fair. In my work as an in-home family therapist, I saw a lot of parents who couldn’t care for their kids, and yet they were having three or four children with no problem. It became hard for me to even go to work… and I stopped attending church, and I drank wine every night to try to cope. I was really in a depressed state. And then one day my Mom said, ‘You’re coming to church with me.’
“And that Sunday, the pastor was talking about someone having a ‘broken heart.’ It felt like he was talking to me. He said, ‘If your BMW stops working, you take it to the BMW dealer. So if your heart is broken, why take it to things like alcohol or other things that don’t help? Take it to your Creator.’
“I realized then that I needed to go back into my spirituality. And my faith really helped me with that time, in a way that drinking wine didn’t – drinking just made me more depressed.
“As a therapist, I respect whatever your beliefs are. You don’t have to believe in the same God I do, or any God, but maybe you have another idea about a higher power, something bigger than yourself that can help you.
“And if you do go to a church or other place of worship, you can feel better being involved with a community, and the music can help to lift you up. There is one hymn that I especially love, it’s helped me as well as many other people, called Encourage Yourself.
“I feel spirituality and therapy go hand in hand. People need most to learn to forgive themselves. Sometimes we are our own worst enemies. And faith can help with that.”
To make an appointment with DeAnna McCaskill or one of our other therapists, please call 610-626-8085 ext. 213, or use the Request an Appointment page on our website.