"When I first met Dr. Choy, I was halfway through college. I thought I had come a long way in my mental health journey but I was still an unhappy person battling many issues--some of which I was not even aware I was dealing with.

 

Dr. Choy sees with a clarity I have rarely encountered. He was able to identify and treat major components of amorphous issues that I have carried all my life. My deep and then-persistent self-loathing (which manifested itself in many ways, not least of which was an alcohol problem and an eating disorder), for instance, he quickly connected with the absence of a healthy family dynamic in my childhood, as well as my ADHD, which often presented an invisible obstacle in the way of many goals that I told myself I was simply not good enough to achieve. Not only is he incredibly smart, he is deeply empathetic and was in many ways the first interaction I have had with true unconditional support.

 

One aspect of Dr. Choy’s treatment that I have always appreciated is his incorporation of science-based explanation in working with my disorders. I cannot count the number of times I have left his office deep in thought about the functions of the prefrontal cortex in my day-to-day life, or felt comforted knowing that with genuine and repeated effort I can retrain the connections in my brain to set the stage for a more positive and healthy outlook. He has also been extremely helpful in encouraging me to focus on mindfulness, which I admit I previously wrote off as a feel-good but ultimately unhelpful exercise. Learning to be aware of my emotions and thoughts without constantly feeling at their mercy has changed my life.

 

Perhaps the easiest way to show you how Dr. Choy has helped me is to describe who I used to be and who I have become. Three or four years ago, I was: starving myself in an effort to be beautiful, laughing it off when I fell asleep at the wheel and drove off a highway nearly to my death, hating myself for not being able to just “get over” past traumas, sitting in my room staring at a corner of the ceiling wondering if the crushing pain of my depression could physically kill me. Today, I am: in a loving and stable relationship, speaking to myself with respect and care instead of disgust and hate, actively finding ways to improve my productivity and well-being, and feeling strong enough to help others find their way like Dr. Choy has helped me find mine.

 

Like any human, Dr. Choy is not a miracle-worker. Working with him is not a magical solution that will fix all your life problems--however, I think he offers something better than a panacea. He has been a true partner on the battlefield that is mental health, a support in tough times and a clear-sighted professional when I needed structure and direction. For that, I will be forever thankful."

-J.J.