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Lorna’s Background

Lorna Hayim-Baker is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) who worked in a clinical setting (from 2008-2011) under the supervision of Dr. William James, owner and director of South Shore Counseling & Psychological Services located in Wantagh, New York. Lorna was given endless referrals and those referrals consisted of clients and couples who came from all cultures and all walks of life; and  they presented with a myriad of diagnoses. Lorna says “experience is the best teacher”. After having gained an endless supply of insight form Dr. James, she felt confident ascribing each of her patients’ with a diagnosis in accordance with Diagnostics and Statistic Manual (DSM-IV).

Lorna proudly takes credit for changing the way she delivers premarital counseling, marriage counseling, counseling for committed couples not yet bound by marriage, and to families. Lorna developed her marathon sessions based off of the feedback she was receiving from her couples. Their common complaint was that weekly sessions meeting for an hour were ineffective. Many couples tried getting therapy from more than one marriage/couple's therapist and finding the right match for both partners was very challenging and very expensive since it became a weekly out of pocket expense. Most couples therapists' charge anywhere between $100-$200 an hour and my couples have mentioned paying between $300-$400.00 an hour and not getting any place. They reported going to several different therapists and never finding one who could help them become a more intimate and loving couple. 

Lorna designed a new platform for marriage/couples therapy with their many complaints in mind and came up with an entirely different modality. She was propelled to design a couples session that lasted long enough to matter and to give couples an “aha experience”. She remembers her personal experience with weekly sessions and claims just getting to the weekly sessions caused dissension and contention. She and other couples left weekly therapy sessions saying 'hourly sessions fly by' and then they would just sigh and lose hope because they were not taught how to cope when one partner or the other turned molehills into mountains and escalated from 0-100. "We all went into therapy thinking we would be given a set of tools, shown a particular technique or skill to ward off some of our fights (when we lost our way and became frazzled); but we were literally taught nil. We all wanted to learn how to get back on track and cope with whatever got us derailed; and instead we left without hope and and we headed home with a feeling of despair in the air. 

Couples go to therapy seeking solutions to their problems and they want to know how to substitute their negative repetitive behaviors with new behaviors and put them into play as soon as a dispute erupts. Lorna is a solution focused therapist and when couples go to her she gives them a go to plan should emotions run a muck. The most common retort by all the couples who came to Riverdale Therapy & Counseling Services was: 'we spent a lot of money and we got nowhere'. That kind of comment devastates a dedicated therapist who specializes in couple/marriage therapy. Lorna declares: "raving reviews are music to my ears and I am sure all therapists are on the same page when it comes to reading  positive feedback from their clients and/or couples who took the time to post positive reviews on google.  Raving reviews written  by satisfied couples/clients about their therapists are clients who are not only recommending and complimenting the services provided by their couple's therapist, but they are also couples who are shouting from the roof top that they formed a therapeutic bond with their therapist and that is why they had a successful outcome. These grateful couples actually want other couples to also have a successful outcome and that is why they take time to write and post a review.

"Getting nowhere” and paying out of pocket, is a pathetic outcome.  I know insurance companies are not paying for marriage and/or couples therapy and that is why my free phone consultations are now mandatory and its purpose is to accept couples who I feel I can get to a better place and to eliminate couples who will not mesh with my personality. The couples calling who do not seem to mesh with me are the couples who leave bad reviews and worse yet, those couples are the kind of couple who will not only try and take control of my session, but they will also be the couples capable of blowing up my session. I am quite intuitive and take my time to make sure who will benefit from my services. It sounds conceited and like I am full of my self, but it is actually the opposite.  I know that I am not the right match for everyone, and that is why I hand pick my couples to prevent many couples from wasting their time and/or their money. I use my personal time to make sure couples are given a free phone consultation because couples therapy is an out of pocket expense and not covered by any insurance company. People who have an EAP, should check out if they cover this type of therapy. I am adamant about not wasting a potential couple's time and/or their money and that is why I give  a huge amount of my own personal time to vet every person who calls inquiring about my services. I say to my potential couples/patients  that there is no one therapist who will be right for every couple/client. 

"My Marathon Sessions  have a minimum of two hours and can last  anywhere between two to six hours. During my mandatory phone consultation I will also discuss my fee". Call Lorna Hayim-Baker directly on (917) 270-9595 for your free phone consultation.

"I felt there was a need to reinvent how couples/marriage therapy was delivered and to give couples an alternative. Their repetitive constant and common complaint uttered by so many couples was that their session was much too short and accomplished naught.  I came up with a design that will address the crime of not offering couples enough time; and I refer to my marriage/couples' therapy as: 'My Marriage Marathon'. It  turned out that the name in and of itself, attracted married couples seeking therapy. I also extended my marathon therapy to include 'My Premarital Marathon' for couples who have set a date to marry within a year and 'My Marathon for Committed Couples Not Yet Bound By Marriage'. Many of my couples invested so many years into their relationship, too numerous to mention; but the thought of turning them away  would have reduced them to tears. I tried to come up with solutions to get them unstuck by examining their past trials and tribulations. Often times I provide psycho education and teach them how to recognize their negative repetitive pattern of behavior that keeps their wheels spinning  and prevents them from getting unstuck.  I offer them some solutions so they  can break out of that negative cycle.

In Lorna’s own words: “I now offer marathon sessions because they are known to work.  I intuitively know with whom I can form a therapeutic bond and I turn down other couples for whom I am not the right fit.  I can feel  that we click  during the free consult and it is crystal clear when we don't click. Therapists have asked me to teach them the way that I conduct my couples' session; but when we meet, they are overwhelmed by the thought of spending two-six hours with one couple. No one else wants to offer this type of therapy because it requires what seems like endless time and patience with  each couple, on the therapist’s end; and it is not a big money maker. I tried reassuring therapists that walking away knowing you just saved a couple from an ugly and awful breakup or prevented a couple from going through a disastrous divorce is often payment in and of itself and certainly very rewarding. Money talks even in the world of psychotherapy. Not one therapist wanted to learn how to conduct a marathon session because it overwhelmed them. My couples refer to me as their 'therapist of last resort'. They have already paid between $200-$400 for their past weekly couples' sessions and reported that they did not get anywhere. 'My Marathon Sessions' have substance, momentum, and they flow.  I pay attention to both partners and feel like I am watching a movie. I tell my couple that they are the two main characters in the movie I am watching. Couples, for the most part, walk away from my marathon sessions with a feeling of hope; and they also walk away having learned techniques and skills to help them embrace change and how to  tackle their toxic behaviors using the insight that they gained throughout my marathon session".

Lorna believes because she thinks outside the box, she is able to develop a different and more effective modality based on the needs of each couple. Most of her couples leave therapy with realized gains and hope. She admits that there is no one therapist who will be right for every couple and there are some couples who will go from therapist to therapist and no one seems to be the right fit for them. No one is admitted into Riverdale Therapy & Counseling Services without a mandatory free phone consultation that takes between five to fifteen minutes and often times a lot longer.  The free phone consultation can last a lot longer if Lorna has doubt about whether or not she can get a couple to a better place. She does not want to prematurely abort a possible couples session without there being a really good reason. 

Lorna loves getting raving reviews and she credits those reviews to her vetting process. She makes sure that she is the right match for couples interested in her premarital and/or marriage marathon; and she gives the same mandatory free phone consult to individual clients when they call to make their appointment. Her mission during the free phone consultation is to make sure the couple and/or client clicks with her on that initial call. Potential clients who act angry and/or defensive during their free phone consult are not the right match and nor will they mesh with Lorna’s personality. She is looking for people who can take the truth without sugar coating it, want feed back that is both positive and/or negative, and who can handle the blatant truth. She admits she can be a bit too blunt at times, but she does it to drive the point home. Lorna states: “Many couples therapists walk on eggshells in order not to disturb the peace and to make sure their couple returns for another session. That’s done to ensure that couples return and pay for another session. Lorna does not think that is an honest and direct approach and she says “I pride myself in telling the truth and I do not beat around the bush. Clients who want to sweep the crumbs under the rug to keep peace will not be enabled to go that route at Riverdale Therapy & Counseling Services. 

If you want to have your free phone consult before making an appointment, please call Lorna Hayim-Baker from Riverdale Therapy & Counseling Services on (917)-270-9595 and she  answers her phone personally if she is not in session.

“I will not accept people with explosive temperaments and nor will I accept couples where one partner disrespects me during the free phone consultation. As I am writing this website, I received a call inquiring about my couples session and I detected an attitude from the minute she began answering my questions. This caller was rude and disrespectful within minutes and  as I was about to tell her that we were not a good match, she abruptly terminated the call. I was relieved that I did not have to tell her that we are not a good match. I listen carefully to make sure the caller and I are clicking and when we are not clicking the consultation is over fairly quickly because the chances are pretty high that our personalities will not mesh during a marathon session. Not meshing does not mean disagreeing. Having a different point of view does not mean blowing up my session. If I get a negative vibe during the phone consultation, I may not accept that couple and I will explain why. I stay clear of people who enjoy butting heads, challenging people who are in power, and/or like being contrary.  I protect myself and my reputation by not contracting with clients who like to control everything around them and/or who will try to take control of my session. I can usually see that coming during the phone consultation. The screening process I stick too decreases the chances of that happening. If anything, I am too intuitive and after asking some pertinent questions, I weed out and I also welcome and accept cooperative couples into Riverdale Therapy & Counseling Services. My goal is to provide couples with a safe space for them to unload and express their issues. I also have to feels safe".

"I went to a reunion with fellow graduates from Adelphi where many of my fellow classmates conduct marriage/couples counseling and they also admitted not having a great outcome with every couple with whom they contracted. They told me that I was selling myself short by turning so many clients away; and after that reunion, I began accepting more couples even though my gut was saying to give them a pass. I learned that most couples’ therapists were making appointments with all couples who were calling them for their services (as long as they agree to pay their fee).  I began to relax my boundaries, but this did not happen without a price to pay.  I realized that the couples who bashed me on line and left bad reviews were the same couples who I accepted reluctantly and looking back that was a mistake because I didn't feel the click during the phone consultation.  “I have a commitment to excellence and I therefore went back to doing it ‘my way’ and for my type of personality, I would rather see fewer clients than risk my reputation.”

Lorna returned to her way of thinking and today remains true to her philosophy; and she still vets everyone who calls her before accepting them into treatment. For the most part, she feels that her vetting process not only makes her unique in this field, but it also created a comfort zone for her to think outside the box and become an agent of change who is dis-inhibited and confident about giving creative advice and suggestions to receptive couples/clients. Lorna’s goal during her vetting process is getting a gut feeling that their personality and hers will mesh during a marathon session.  Due to her keen perception when it comes to peoples’ personalities she can often tell on the initial phone consult whether or not she clicks with potential couples/clients. Lorna states: “I believe in spending five to fifteen minutes with every client who is inquiring about my services. ‘My first question is: why did you pick up the phone to call a therapist today'? I listen to them intently and ask pertinent follow up questions with the hopes of finding out whether or not I am the right therapist for them. I only accept couples and clients who I believe will benefit from my sessions. I must get the feeling that there is a good chance that I can get them to a better place on that initial mandatory phone consultation". 

“As of now, I am sticking to my original philosophy of providing my mandatory free five to fifteen minute  phone consultations and often quite a bit longer If I feel a sense of doubt. Clients who present with doubt on my end go on a bit longer to eliminate my doubt and to ensure that I do not reject a client before giving them the benefit of the doubt. Doubt leads me to dig a little deeper which prevents me from prematurely aborting a potential couple and turning them down for the wrong reasons.” The benefit of the doubt is given until Lorna is sure that the couple on the phone will not be a good match for her. She credits her mandatory free phone consultations for having so many great reviews posted on Yelp and on Google. “I am taking responsibility for the few bad reviews left by disgruntled and angry clients who I should not have accepted in the first place. So many couples’ therapists suggested I take everyone who was willing to pay for my services; and that might work for them but it doesn’t work for me. They told me I could be selling myself short, so I took their advice and gave many couples the benefit of the doubt, despite having a gut feeling that they were not the right match for  the services I provide. I tried to broaden the population that I was willing to accept and I now know that was a mistake for me.  i realized you cannot fit a round peg into a square hole". There are only a handful of bad reviews and more than one hundred reviews left by satisfied couples/clients. Had I remained true to my initial vetting philosophy that number of bad reviews would have decreased”.

"It is part of a therapist’s job to take on difficult clients because the therapist may have a better outcome than they thought was possible. It is better to try, then to walk away and give up too easily on potential couples/clients. Dr. Richard Belson, my professor, my liason between my internships and Adelphi University was also my supervisor and mentor and he normalized the concept of being a dedicated therapist and made me understand that even the best of therapists will not succeed all the time".

Lorna wants to make sure that everyone reading her website understands that no insurance company covers marriage and/or couples therapy. She urges you to cal your insurance company to see for yourself that this type of therapy is an out of pocket expense. Couples' therapists see patients weekly and for no more than ninety minutes sessions and often for only an hour. My clients/couples have deemed these weekly session to be ineffective and the cost was exorbitant. Lorna delivers couples/marriage therapy in a new and different format. A session is viewed as a workshop and  there is a two hour minimum. Lorna blocks out six hours on her calendar because many couples have used four five and six hours but they only pay for the hours they used.

“I designed a more effective way of delivering couples counseling to married and unmarried committed couples. Couples are calling to schedule an appointment because they think of me as their ‘therapist of last resort’. It is not uncommon for someone to say that they have gone to a few marriage counselor’s where they met for 6-8 weekly sessions and nothing was accomplished. Weekly couples’ sessions that meet for an hour has proven to be ineffective and very expensive, especially in today’s world where both partners work and have opposite schedules”. 

“One couple, who paid $400.00 a session, diligently attended four sessions, and called me after saying that they were feeling desperate because they did not get anything out of those sessions. This couple was stuck in a negative repetitive pattern of behavior and they were arguing all the time and getting nowhere. They referred to me  as ‘their therapist of last resort’. Two hours into their session with me they said ‘we learned so much more in these two hours with you, than we learned during the four sessions that we spent with our last therapist’. That kind of a comment is music to any therapist’s ear and especially to mine.”

Lorna credits herself with designing a whole new platform consisting of a new modality which she refers to as ‘marathon therapy’ and she states, “I tell it like it is: I am the only therapist that offers a session that can go on for six or more hours. I can do that for two reasons. I have an endless amount of patience for all my patients and because I am passionate about saving couples from ugly break ups and/or disastrous divorces, I hang in there for as long as needed. I do not watch the clock unless I know the couple has set a time limit fort he session. I do not suggest making an appointment when you have a time limit. 

“I refer to my sessions as ‘My Marriage Marathon’ and ‘My Marathon for Committed Couples Not Yet Bound By Marriage’. These sessions have the format of a workshop and I tell my couples they cannot come back for six weeks (I do make exceptions), but they can call with questions to get them back on track. I do not feel weekly sessions that meet for forty five to sixty minutes are effective because they go by much too quickly. My session covers specific modules and has a beginning, middle and an ending. Most of my couples walk out of their marathon sessions having learned new skills, techniques, and tools to practice over the next six weeks; and they also walk away feeling hopeful and optimistic about their future. These couples can use the tools they were taught in their session to become a more intimate and fulfilled couple.  Going forward, couples begin to now use their emotional intelligence when they do not see eye to eye and/or firmly disagree, instead of going from 0-100 and becoming emotionally dysregulated”. 

Lorna is also a solution focused therapist who specializes in pre-marital and marriage/couples therapy and she extends her therapy to individual clients who are struggling with substance abuse, anxiety, depression, relationship issues with  romantic and platonic partners and/or who have eating disorders. 

Lorna Hayim-Baker admits that she too went down roads less traveled and her marriage took on a circuitous theme while living out her own personal storms until they found the right therapist. The right therapist was not only able to identify their problem but that therapist also told  what we needed to do in order to solve it. Lorna credits herself with saving her husband from cancer and for making him take responsibility for the problems he was causing to himself and to his family, that had nothing to do with his cancer. The story is too long too mention and is personal; but it put her in touch with an endless supply of psychiatrists and therapists who fall into the category of being the best in the field. “I admit using my personal story to help other people who have the same struggle in their marriage and it helps them to know that I can identify with their struggle”.

Lorna became a licensed clinical therapist to help people who were struggling with substance abuse. She wanted them to find their way and make it into “recovery”. She did not want young couples to struggle with alcoholism, cannibus abuse or with any other substance. She did a couple of internships at substance abuse clinics and along with her personal story she can recognize when ‘substance abuse disorder’ is causing couples to fight even though they are in denial or really do not understand the nature of their disease.   My intent, when I went into this profession, was to help clients/couples understand that ‘Substance Abuse Disorder’ was in some way destroying their relationships and lives. I was prepared to see people with all different diagnoses but I gravitated toward doing marriage/couples counseling because I found that ‘substance abuse disorder’ was often present and running rampant in the lives of the many couples who came to me for therapy. They were clueless about alcoholism and how to define it. Other’s smoked pot every night and said they were not taking any drugs. I first have to educate couples how to define a substance abuse problem. That’s when I become their least favorite person. More often than not, couples were not knowledgeable that one or both had a drinking problem or were abusing some other drug. Many people normalize drinking and smoking pot because it is legal and they do not relate to having a problem. Getting them to see that they have a problem is very challenging and getting them out of denial is not always possible. For this precise reason, we as therapists can not help everyone. We must try and I do try!

“Many people come to my practice tell me they just drink socially and/or occasionally. Once I hear them say that they drink socially or occasionally, then I know not to take their word at face value. I need to begin to probe. More often than not, one or both has a problem with a substance. Many domestic violence cases happen and are reported and when they come to see me, the root cause was too much alcohol by one or both partners. Drinking can cause a person to be nasty and aggressive and cause dirty fighting that gets out of control. So many people come from parents who are alcoholics undiagnosed. Very often I hear young people saying their parents died in their forties and fifties and even their sixties. I pay attention to that. I cannot tell you how many of those parents died prematurely and of an alcohol related diagnosis. So many people are not educated about ‘substance abuse disorder’ and blamed their problems on anything except the substance that they were abusing and they were not lying; but clearly they were not educated about ‘Substance Abuse Disorder’”. 

Singles Counseling

Lorna also works with clients who have challenging issues with their family of origin and extended family members, as well as with marital, platonic and unmarried people. “I often work with people who are single and who are desperate to find a life partner. Many people are clueless how to pick the right person and they are tired of the endless dating game that is getting them nowhere. So many single people tell me that they struggle with dating and finding the right partner with whom they can foster a genuine and loving relationships. I enjoy coaching single clients who feel they are losing out on finding true love”.

Lorna also coaches single people who are reluctant to use on-line web-sites or even to take a “fix up” by trusted friends because of prior failed relationships. She teaches these troubled and often lonely individuals how to change earlier unsuccessful dating patterns, by avoiding negative repetitive past errors. In elevating her single clients’ chances for success, Lorna helps them review their past dating patterns, by bringing to their attention and pointing out why they are spinning wheels and getting nowhere. Once she establishes a rapport with her single clients who are seeking to find loving relationships, she assists them in constructing the most inviting bios to be uploaded to their chosen sites. 

Lorna understands that, although online dating is one of the best ways of meeting other single people, it goes against the grain of  many individuals. Yet, the Pandemic made online dating the most efficient -- and sometimes, the only -- way of meeting new people. Still, it is not right for everyone. “I explain to single people who engage in online dating that they have to be patient, consistent, and careful. Writing a bio needs to be accurate when you define who you are; and it also has to express what attributes you are seeking in a potential life partner. Moreover, I discuss the possibilities of attending alternative avenues of meeting people, such as book clubs, theater groups, social dance classes and the like”.

Lorna’s Methodology

“I have been through countless hours of individual therapy, couple’s therapy and family therapy throughout my marriage of twenty three years; and I am all too familiar with the reality that hour long sessions even over the course of many months, often do not help a couple make enough progress in a timely enough manner and they separate prematurely. I therefore was determined to find and employ a far more pragmatic, productive and beneficial approach. This is when I went to work and designed sessions that cover too many modules to mention. Couples come to me already in dissension and in contention; but I do not give up; that’s precisely when I put the petal to the metal and try to save them from disastrous divorces and/or ugly breakups and I do have a high rate of success.

“Thus, after much experimentation in these regards, and mostly through virtual zoom sessions over the last few years, I have developed what I refer to as: ‘My Marriage Marathon’ or ‘My Marathon For Committed Couples Who are Not Yet Bound By Marriage’. I am talking about a session that lasts 5, 6, 7, hours”. 

“Before you start to sweat profusely, and check your bank account, you must fully understand what this entails. At the beginning of each session, I give each spouse or partner his or her  own therapy session with full disclosure to the other partner, who is listening quietly but intently. At this stage, I inquire about what their lives have been like in order to analyze the individual behaviors that have been causing unrest in their present day relationship. I need to know the history of both partners, since everyone is who they are today because of what they have gone through in their past. 

Lorna has discovered that even couples who have been together for years, or even decades, have no awareness of many trials, tribulations and life challenges that their partners have endured and survived, serving as the bedrock of their present emotional intelligent quotient. Hence, those partners have no knowledge of what life-altering adversities their partners have lived through and therefore, why they are who they are. “These initial individual sessions (within the longer marathon session, with the silent partner listening) have been proven to arouse and spawn great theretofore non-existent empathy in each other as their respective life long histories becomes first realized and shared at the same time. Couples become more intimate after their partners reveal significant events from their past and how it impacted upon their present and making them who they are today. The great benefit is getting to know your partner’s past because knowing all parts of your partner fosters intimacy.” 

Lorna takes in as much information about their respective past to analyze their past patterns of negative repetitive behaviors which have been undermining their present relationships.

Since the beginning of the Pandemic, all sessions have been conducted successively over zoom. In recent days, as the situation has improved, personal sessions with vaccinated clients who have also received their booster are being resumed if that is their preference.

NOTE: Lorna will not accept a couple who cannot get a babysitter or plan to steal themselves away for four to six hours. The distraction resulting from the baby’s needs are counter-productive to the benefits to be obtained from the session.  

The Initial Consultation

These days, for reasons discussed, many, if not most therapists who specialize in marriage and couples counseling have their phones constantly ringing. Lorna’s phone (917-270-9595) not only rings often, but she also answers it personally when she is not in session or in the midst of another phone consultation -- seven days a week! She also makes her self available seven days a week to accommodate difficult schedules. Weekends are booked in advance and scooped up by couples who do not work on weekends. Lorna keeps careful track of messages and endeavors to return each call personally within a few hours, as long as the caller leaves a name, number, and alternative best times to call back.  

Lorna prides herself on having attained rave reviews and believes that they result from her carefully vetting each caller in order to determine whether she will be a good fit, whether her and the caller’s personalities will mesh, and whether the objective being sought is within her ability to attain. 

The Fee Structure

During the mandatory free phone consultation Lorna will also explain the initial fee and its gradation over the course of the marathon session, noting the (widely unknown) reality that marriage/couples therapy is not covered by most insurance policies. 

Since Covid, and the absence of personal sessions, Lorna needed to devise a way to be  compensated for her professional services. She therefore asks her clients to cover the first two hours on PayPal to reserve her time. After the second hour, the third hour goes down in price as does the fourth, fifth and sixth, all of which are payable on Pay Pal after the session is over. If clients lack a Pay Pal account, they need to drop off their deposit at Lorna’s  building before the appointment can be placed on her calendar. There is really no alternative, since several times in the past, potential clients have required Lorna to block a six to eight hour session, only to either cancel at the last minute or simply be a no show. 
If in person, the balance can be paid after the session is over. 

Lorna’s Philosophy

Lorna prides herself as an agent of change. Change is possible if you want to break away from your repetitive negative cycle of failed relationships that feels all too familiar. Lorna will stop your wheels from spinning and get you unstuck so you can actually make progress and attain success. She will help you break out of your pattern of negative repetitive behaviors that have been holding you back from being in positive and healthy relationships with your spouse, partner, family of origin, extended family, or platonic and/or romantic relationships. These negative repetitive patterns of behavior have most likely taken you down some pathetic paths. Lorna wants to teach you how to stop going down all the wrong roads and, instead, she helps you to choose more positive paths, which will lead you to places where you have never been with a special person in your life. 

Surely, these patterns of negative repetitive behaviors are burdensome because they may have made your relationship or dating experience  disastrous, and caused you a life of despair. Lorna wants to help you, either remain with, or pick the right person, amidst a relationship of fulfillment, joy and ceaseless laughter.  

Single people who want to be part of a couple need to stop “poor picking” which has become part of their negative repetitive pattern. “Poor picking” is a big reason why people take the bumpy highway where there is always an emotional price to pay. Taking the road less traveled (the road you do not yet know) will be the road that will allow you to sail more smoothly through your life.

Lorna wants to help you understand why bad things happen to good people so they can be avoided, if possible in all future undertakings as far as relationships are concerned? People do not choose their lot in life, but how they think and how they act can make their time on this planet far more fulfilling. So many people are stuck and get nowhere because they do the same thing over and over again hoping for a better and different outcome. That, it has been said, is the definition of insanity. 

Therefore, a pattern of negative, repetitive behavior is self destructive and it will come to define you if you do not work on changing your actions and reactions that have become bad habits. Lorna helps you understand that these bad habits serve only to keep your wheels spinning so you are prevented from getting yourself “unstuck.” In turn, the inertial prevents you from moving on up and from having real growth as human beings and prevents you from finding a lifetime partner. This is why understanding yourself is so important. Being comfortable in your own skin is paramount to becoming the kind of a person who wants to change and turn into a person who can live a life worth celebrating alone or with someone else.

On the other hand, situations do indeed arise where Lorna can help you recognize if your present relationship is irretrievably toxic, rather than just needing improvement in specific areas. In such event, if that is the analysis and your desire, she will help you extricate yourself from a situation that is simply destined for destruction, thereby allowing you to pick up the pieces and move on to someone who is a better fit. 

So, for a far more serene, peaceful and fulfilling tomorrow, contact Lorna Hayim-Baker today - 917-270-9595



That last sentence made me remember why I always tell the truth. I worked for a mental health facility for three years and it was directed by the owner of the facility. who had an obligation to supervise me for one hour a week over a three year period. I was going over one of my couples cases and told him that one of the partners was a raging alcoholic like her mother. He stopped me right there and asked me how many times have you seen this couple? I told him that they had two previous sessions with me and the only time she turned into and angry and abusive person is when they frequented this particular karaoke bar and grill and they went almost every weekend. My boss/supervisor told me that I should not have told her what her diagnosis was until she came for a couple of months. His theory was that she would not come back to our center and we would not be able to bill the couple out because she was not yet ready to hear she was an alcoholic. I did not go into this field to bill out each case to insurance companies. I need to make money to pay for my expenses just like everyone else. The free time I give to couples (many times I give each partner a free phone consult because they work opposite schedules and more often than not the free phone consultations take much longer than I expected) and to individual patients during their free phone consultation adds up to an incredulous amount of time ( I'm actually embarrassed to keep track of all the time it takes for me to take on a new couple/family and/or individual.

This is the time to talk to a professional and decide what they want their immediate future to look like. These relationships have been ruptured many times and maybe both partners are in part responsible for their share of ruptures. Often one partner seems like the loose cannon and seems to take on much more of the responsibility for their devastated state of affairs. More often than not, a therapist who pays attention to detail will be able to blame the innocent looking partner for enabling their partner's toxic behavior. There are many enablers who do not like conflict and they sweep everything under the rug or find themselves walking on eggshells to maintain the peace. That is not a genuine relationship because it is not based on love and respect; it is based on fear. It is a fear based relationship when one partner will maintain peace at all costs and will even walk on eggshells to avoid conflict and chaos..A good therapist will bring these deep rooted fears out and into the open where all their toxic behaviors are laid out and we examine all of the behaviors that are contributing to the demise of their relationship. Sometimes this is a wake up call for the partner exhibiting toxic behavior. We are not bringing it to their attention to shame them, but to have them take accountability and to say that they are willing to hear about how they can make their point in a new and different way.

Couples talk about how there parents were unfit and they were put in to the system and went in and out of foster care.because their primary care givers were totally unfit in some other way. Many of my couples reflect about the relationships they saw while growing up and I realize they have no idea how to be in a good relationship. I love my job and I tell my friends that my job is like going to a different movie a few times a day. I can hear it in their voices if they are really "in it to win it" . I only accept those patients who understand that this type of therapy is like making an investment in their most important asset (their children and family). You must truly be thinking about couples/marriage/family or individual therapy and be willing to invest your time and money to learn how to become a more successful parent, individual, spouse, partner and/or friend. To get a free and mandatory consultation please do not hang up on my recording as I get back soonest to potential patients who leave their name, number and best times to call them back. I get back to have a brief chat where I listen intently to your issues so I can understand what made you pick up the phone to call a marriage/therapist. I am one of the few therapists in this field who screens their potential couples for a 5-15 minute verbal screening and this is done by giving my mandatory free 5-15 minutes to vet out my patients. I am not the only therapist who works with this population, but I may be one of the only therapists who screens my couples and will not take someone just because they called some therapist who popped up on-line. I am the therapist of last resort, because as I stated previously, couples/marriage/family therapy is ineffective when couple go to weekly sessions for 60-90 minutes. Please call, Lorna Hayim-Baker from "Riverdale Therapy and Counseling Services", to get your free phone consultation. If my approach is not right for both of you or your family, I will explain why I am not t the right therapist for you. I will also offer you other options if they are available.

Perhaps you are feeling anxious, depressed and/or hostile and never thought that your personal life could be this difficult, confusing and totally overwhelming? You may be having difficulty making decisions and realize that you keep repeating negative patterns that are self destructive and have no clue how to stop. Personal issues such as anxiety, depression, lack of impulse control, relationships with spouse/partner and/or other family members such as your children and/or parents may be making you feel like life is one big struggle. Life can certainly pose road blocks and lead us down bumpy roads. Whether you have communication problems with your spouse, child, coworker or others, changes can always take place when you are willing to work with a qualified therapist .

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I am a licensed clinical social worker who is totally dedicated to my patients. As a qualified therapist I will teach you to get to know yourself. I will encourage you to reach within yourself so that you can identify and label your feelings. Knowing how you feel and why you feel a particular way is essential to problem solving. Once you get in touch with your feelings and begin to problem solve you will become better acquainted with yourself. Understanding yourself and why you are not comfortable in your own skin is paramount to becoming the kind of person you want to become.

If you are having issues with your partner or spouse I can help you recognize if your present relationship is too toxic or just needs improvement in specific areas. I support and guide the many couples I work with while they make their decision to improve their relationship; or I teach them how to separate and terminate a relationship that is causing one or both partners too much pain. My goal is helping couples salvage their troubled relationship by giving them tools and techniques that insure that they understand each others' needs. I teach my couples how to express themselves accurately so that they can get what they want without sending the wrong messages to one another. Avoiding divorce and/or painful breakups is my personal goal.

I can empower you to be a happier individual, spouse, partner, parent, child, friend, coworker and/or boss by teaching you how to control personal rage and angry impulses which are causing irreparable damage to your relationships. You are more credible when you are in control. "Loose cannons" win the battles but lose the wars while damaging their relationships with other people in their lives.

I never stop appreciating the fact that through therapy my clients get in touch with themselves and find that they can truly be happy. They gain true insight which allows them to know what they have been missing and why. Witnessing my clients self-actualize and grow exponentially makes me know that I chose to be an agent of change for the right reasons. Not only do I constantly seek a chance to make an improvement in the lives of my patients, but I am also committed to making a difference in their lives that will inspire them to become their personal best and they do. To me, making a difference that positively impacts the lives of my patients, is not only empowering, but makes me want to reach out and help many more people who feel they have lost their way and want to feel more grounded. Watching and witnessing the quality of life improve in the lives of my clients is priceless! I

If you are seriously thinking that you need to find a therapist to whom you can speak candidly , I encourage you to call me, Lorna Hayim-Baker from Riverdale Therapy and Counseling Services now at (917) 270-9595 to set up an appointmentso 

If you are truly ready to seek out a positive path to growth and well being or are just looking for extra support and guidance, I am the therapist who will empower you to tackle your challenging situations in a whole new way! Let me open you up to new options if you are sincerely ready for your life to move in a new and more promising direction!

Call Lorna Baker at (917) 270-9595 or send me a text with your name and number or an e-mail; but remember I get back soonest to those who call me. Do not hang up on my voicemail as I will get back to you and if we are a match, (and I will know that by giving you the free phone consultation), and can then schedule your first appointment.

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