Angelika Mellema PH.D., RP

Registered Psychotherapist & Psychoanalyst

Angelika Mellema Psychotherapy & Psychoanalysis
Life doesn't have
to be this hard.
My Approach

Although I treat and consult on a wide range of issues, my approach to each is based on the sophisticated in-depth thinking, theories, and techniques of psychoanalytic and psychodynamic models of mind as well as informed by my knowledge and training in cognitive and social psychology, personality psychology, and organizational behavior.

I offer Psychoanalytic or Psychodynamic Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis. At times, more short-term therapy or counseling is appropriate (e.g., Cognitive Behavior Therapy) which I can also provide. I tailor my specific approach to the issues and needs of my clients.

During our initial consultation we can get to know each other and after a comprehensive discussion about your difficulties and context, I can recommend which treatment approach would be the best for you.



PSYCHOANALYSIS

Psychoanalysis is an intensive psychotherapy that is based on the sophisticated, extensive, rich, and in-depth thinking, theories, and models of Psychoanalysis. It is based on the belief that factors outside our conscious awareness profoundly influence our behavior.

While we go about our lives, these factors (such as implicit beliefs about ourselves and others, unconscious ideas, conflicts, wishes, and fantasies) can lead -- without our being aware of them -- to unhappiness, troubling personality tendencies and behaviors, recurrent issues in interpersonal functioning, and/or difficulties with work effectiveness. They are often at the root of the problems for which people are coming to therapy. The aim of psychoanalysis is to bring these unconscious factors to mind and gain insight into their potential origin and effect on one’s behavior patterns, relationships, and life. Once they are brought into awareness, one can think about them rationally and make constructive changes.

Psychoanalysis is highly individualized and the suitability of the treatment depends on your issues and goals, which we will explore together during our initial meetings. It can be a treatment of choice for those individuals who want to explore their inner life in greater depth and/or those who want to make significant changes in their life. It may be recommended for those who have long-standing and ingrained patterns of behavior that they want to change.


PSYCHOANALYTIC PROCESS

The psychoanalytic process differs from psychoanalytic or psychodynamic psychotherapy in its frequency (3-5/week) and modality (often couch, but it can also be face-to-face), which makes it more intense than other forms of therapy. The intensity and modality of the treatment makes it possible to bring to awareness aspects that may remain inaccessible to other methods.


EFFECTIVENESS OF PSYCHOANALYSIS

Psychoanalysis has been shown to be effective for anxiety disorders, depression, eating disorders, sexual and relationship disorders, work problems, obsessive -compulsive disorders, psychosomatic complaints, substance abuse, and personality dysfunctions. Treatment effects have been shown to yield substantial benefit and improvement, which continues even after treatment has ended.


PSYCHOANALYTIC OR PSYCHODYNAMIC PSYCHOTHERAPY

Psychoanalytic or Psychodynamic Psychotherapy is an empirically validated psychotherapy that is based on the same principles as psychoanalysis. The main difference is the frequency of the sessions (once or twice rather than three or four times per week) and the modality (face-to-face).

The therapy process consists of an interpretive dialogue between you and me. We work collaboratively to explore your inner life in depth and bring to awareness core issues, relationship patterns, private thinking and ideas in order to understand these which offers the possibility to make positive changes.

The psychoanalytic or psychodynamic approach has been shown to be successful in treating a large number of people with a wide range of issues. Studies have demonstrated these methods to be effective at reducing distress and promoting physical and psychological wellbeing, showing ongoing therapeutic gains and improvements after treatment. Psychotropic medications may not be necessary anymore as a result of the treatment.


OTHER MODES OF PSYCHOTHERAPY

In addition to a psychodynamic and psychoanalytic approach, I also offer other types of therapy such as Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) and/or Mindfulness Therapy. Sometimes, there is a specific request by clients for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy. It also consists of a dialogue between you and me, but is more structured and less extensive than psychodynamic or psychoanalytic psychotherapy. After having met with you and having gained a better understanding of your issues, I can indicate whether this form of therapy is the most effective treatment for you.


SHORT TERM THERAPY OR COUNSELLING

At times, someone only feels the need or is helped by short term counseling for a specific issue that may be solved in one or two sessions. I am happy to help in this manner as well.