What our clients say...
Social therapy has shown me that every minute of every day I have the choices and the power to create my life and to develop beyond my reactions, fears, stereotypes, and judgments. I have more than I ever thought possible — joy, peace of mind, loving relationships, possibilities, and excitement about the future.
— Allison C., Beacon, NY
How can I describe the help I have gotten (and continue to get) over my 7 years of doing social therapy? It's been such a journey - challenging, rewarding, difficult, emotional, joyful and surprising. I have gone "beyond myself" in ways I could never have imagined! I've learned to build my life in creative ways, I have learned to see myself as others see me - giving me many many more mirrors, expanding my view on how I want to be in the world.
Through big life losses and ordinary day to day pain, I have learned that even the most intense emotional pain can be transformed and molded. By making both pain and joy a group activity, we have the power to do many things with it. I have felt close to so many people that I would never have had the opportunity to get close to if I did not participate in group therapy. It's been an honor to get intimate with men and women of all ages, classes, and colors to develop together and collectively.
I think I used to see my life like I was "in it", rather than creating it, and sometimes I would even experience life as if watching a movie! I had many ideas of who I could and could not get close to. I assumed that I was the expert on how I was feeling, and that these feelings were very private things that I should be selective about granting access to others. Now I see these ideas and feelings as creative content to be given to the group so that we all might build with it and grow. It's given me more opportunity to be impacted on and impact others, to shape and grow my life in ways that has sparked my imagination, creativity and joy in new and evolving ways.
— Lorraine C., New York, NY
Christine [LaCerva]’s confidence in our ability to develop — as people and as families — is powerful. We have the experience of being taken completely seriously and respected for who we are, while having our notions of what’s possible — emotionally and developmentally — ignited by the fire of her optimism. She always sees something bigger and broader, and is always presenting us with opportunities to perform our lives anew.
— Mary M., New York, NY
My business is more successful every year — and one of the reasons is social therapy! I’ve learned to stay open to possibility. I’m willing to take on challenging new assignments and to do things that I couldn’t have imagined myself doing just five years ago. I have a greater appreciation for what I have to give my clients — not just my writing and coaching skills, but my ability to come through for them. Social therapy has encouraged me to ask my clients what they think of me and my work, and, as a result, my relationships with them are stronger.
— Eve R., New York, NY
When I joined group, I was chronically depressed about failure. Some were personal failures, but I was also obsessed with our failure as Americans to create a more just, prosperous, and safer world. My group directly engaged my depression and my cynicism. From being in group, I’ve learned that it’s possible to feel something new by building something new! I’ve grown as a human being — I’m more generous, thoughtful, and creative. Above all, I’m learning to build a life that’s consistent with my values. Social therapy has given me hope that by addressing ourselves seriously to human development, we can indeed change the world.
— Louis H., New York, NY
Oftentimes in therapy you don’t know who your therapist is or what they think about things. Fred [Newman, my therapist,] isn’t into boundaries. He was very honest with me. He wasn’t afraid to let me know his opinions about things, his values and his political work. He gave me a part of his life, so I could be part of it. As I trusted him, I was able to trust the group more. I knew that he “had my back.” Through many years of work, I came to see what Fred calls the “development of the group” and I became an active member in creating its development. This work has helped me in every aspect of my life. I’m a social therapy success story — emotionally involved and capable, an active part of every moment of my life with my children, in my family and with my patients.
— Lauren F., New York, NY
I was admitted to the hospital for manic-depressive illness, and my psychiatrist of 10 years never even called to ask how I was doing. Even so, it was awhile before I was willing to listen to a friend who told me to try the Social Therapy Group, because they were different. I knew after my first meeting that this was a loving place. At the time I was unemployed, isolated and having a having hard time getting back into the mainstream. After working with me for few weeks, my therapist introduced me to group therapy and encouraged me to engage other people. I am now working at a job, have friends and, with a psychiatrist’s supervision, I have been able to reduce my need for anti-depressants for the first time in 20 years.
— Jean S., New York, NY
I felt like a kid sitting on a fence watching my life... Amazing how I never believed I could create, dance, perform… Allowing others to experience my emotional pain, joys and sorrows has strengthened my trust… I enjoy the sense of community spirit that I experience in social therapy and have learned that I play an important role in my own communities…
— Cheryl M., Montclair, NJ
I came to social therapy because I was having difficulties with a relationship I was in… I don’t have much regard for traditional therapy, but...I thought I should try social therapy. My therapist doesn’t just sit there and wait for me to do all the talking. She is very straight in her responses to what she hears. We’re building something together rather than starting from the premise that I’m “sick” and need help. We’re taking action as partners rather than getting into psychobabble.
— Richard F., New York, NY
After years in other therapy not getting help, I’ve gotten a tremendous amount of help in social therapy. Fred [Newman] refused to treat me as a wounded or especially fragile person, in need of special help, or as someone you couldn’t say hard things to. I lived up to his expectations by being less wounded and crazy. He made demands on me to take responsibility for the life and the growth of the group — to see myself not as a victim and more as a solid member of my group, my community and the human race. He helped me gain a better perspective of who I was in the world.