When Mirel Adler got her degree in social work, she assumed she would be involved in pretty standard work—maybe in a nursing home facility, or something of the sort. She never expected to be running a private practice or delving into women’s issues. But, like many of us, life took her down a new path, and she has learned to apply her skills in a whole new way.
Right before her graduation, when she was pregnant with her third child and had just signed the contract for her family’s first home, Mirel went with her mother on a routine check-up, where they were told that her mother had terminal cancer and only a few years to live. This devastating blow left Mirel and her family reeling, and simultaneously compounded with so many major changes in her life, it forced her into basic survival mode for many years.
Overcome with grief at the loss of her mother, Mirel entered into her fourth pregnancy, assuming it would be like all the others. But what she experienced after the birth of her baby was unlike anything she had ever learned about, even with all of her classes in psychology and social work. Surprisingly, maintaining one’s mental health was not something discussed in her schooling, and Mirel didn’t understand what was happening to her as she became severely depressed after her child’s birth. What she did know was that she needed to get help. She knew treatment would be so important that she remortgaged her house to make sure she got it.
After half a year of heavy treatments, where she was diagnosed with postpartum depression and recognized that she was experiencing a delayed grieving process, Mirel realized that she wanted to help other women in trauma, and she went back to school.
She interned at drug and alcohol addiction treatment centers, where she started women’s programs to help them understand the connection between trauma and addiction. She really wanted to work with those who were suffering from addiction in the Orthodox Jewish community. However, she was dissuaded, as no one wanted to “air their dirty laundry”, and addicts within the community were sent away.
Mirel continued doing important work outside of the community, but she never lost her desire to help those within the Orthodox world. She became a Certified Structural Family Therapist at a facility which provided the highest level of care for emotionally disturbed teenagers (those who have been hospitalized multiple times), helping them integrate back into their communities and their families to work together again.
It was at this point that Mirel began working with the organization “Relief” in Lakewood, NJ. They would send her people from the frum community who would otherwise have no long-term care. Although some are having a hard time grappling with the idea that problems like these can exist within our communities, and are therefore scared of therapists like Mirel and the work she is doing, she hopes that she can be the place people turn to when there is nowhere else to go.
In her new private practice facility in Brick, NJ (a central location for most New Jersey communities), Mirel uses her years of hard-core trauma experience, as well as her insider knowledge of living a frum lifestyle, to help people work through any issues they may have within their lives or communities. She helps women to find their inner voices and start to heal. She has witnessed so many rock-bottom situations in her training and has worked “in the trenches” of the opiate crisis. Nothing scares her, and she is well-seasoned in helping others work through their trauma and overcome their maladaptive coping mechanisms (see her article on this topic in our Project Proactive Mental Health Column in our print edition).
Mirel works with clients who need basic therapy, as well as those suffering from trauma and addiction. She does family therapy and helps teens who are uncomfortable in their own bodies. She is helping to de-stigmatize situations within families and the community at large, and she helps bring reconciliation between people who haven’t spoken in years. She works with a lot of Jewish community organizations to get those suffering the help they need.
Mirel calls herself a Humanist, and she works from a traditional psychotherapy angle, taking care to treat her clients with humanity and dignity. She wants women specifically to understand that no matter what they’ve been told in the past (from well-meaning—but naïve and interfering—friends and family members), they are strong and can be autonomous—they may just need a little help and support. She has the compassion, perspective, training, and extensive experience to be that support—for as long as it takes to improve one’s functioning and quality of life.
Mirel is willing to make sure her rates fit with her client’s budget and will work on a sliding scale if need be; she knows how important it is to get the help one needs and she wants to make it happen! She never wants anyone to be afraid to call based on monetary limitations. She also provides encrypted online therapy (and exclusively operates within HPAA), in addition to her physical office, and is paneled with Cigna and Horizon BCBS (and working on it with United Health Care and Medicare).
Find out more about the services Mirel provides at Regrowth Therapy, LLC, www.regrowththerapy.com, or at her on-site location at 2715 Hooper Ave, 41A, Brick Township, NJ. She can be reached at 856-497-8404 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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