Robert Ferro

Villanova Counseling Intern

Robert Ferro, Villanova Counseling Intern, Bryn Mawr, DBT, Therapy, Psychology, Chronic Illness

You know you have this diagnosis and it’s pretty serious.  The doctors are using scary words like surgery and pathology and  radiation or chemotherapy.  Your family is distraught and you feel scared and at the same time you don’t want to burden them more with your emotions and fears on top of the already hefty diagnosis you have.  So you’ve been alone with it.  Maybe not physically, but emotionally, mentally you have no one to lean on.  You’ve got friends and family and maybe a significant other, but man, you see the effects your diagnosis is having on them and you just don’t want to put one more of a struggle on their plate.  

I know how to help.  I am very familiar with these issues due to my personal experience with critical and chronic illness and my time spent at the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House.  This experience, along with my professional training gives me unique insight into the emotional needs that patients, parents and family members need while managing chronic and critical illnesses.  My studies in neuroscience and psychology and my training in graduate school has helped me develop skills to support clients in developing coping mechanisms, regulating their emotions and practice mindfulness. 

Being diagnosed or having a loved one diagnosed with a critical or chronic illness impacts a person and their family physically as well as emotionally.  In an attempt to treat the physical illness, many individuals forget to address the emotional issues, which are very important for short and long-term recovery.  Patients and their families often suffer from anxiety, depression, fear and hopelessness; and family members keep their emotional pain inside so as not to negatively impact their loved one’s recovery.  An adult patient may exhibit signs of depression and anxiety related to the impact of their illness on their family’s stability including financial stability.   If you or a family member are going through a difficult diagnosis and would like someone to talk with, please contact me at 908-655-6817.  My goal is to help those who are suffering emotionally to find peace and strength within themselves so that tomorrow will seem a little brighter than today.  It is important to remember that treating the emotional needs is very important while you are addressing the physical needs related to chronic illness