About Dr. Blank

My work is based on helping people not only with symptoms and difficulties, but also to develop their hopes, aspirations,and ambitions. Psychotherapy and psychoanalysis both are an intimate and democratic partnership devoted to increasing the happiness and success of the client in work and love. In addition to my 35+ years work as a therapist, including the past 17 years as a psychoanalyst, my life has included experiences with the arts, government and politics, spirituality, war veterans, and family life. I am a member of the psychiatry faculty at George Washington and Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences.

However, in addition I served for twelve years, at the headquarters  of the Dept. of Veterans Affairs in Washington, as the national director  of our country’s counseling  centers for war veterans, the Vet Centers. I was responsible  for 900 staff persons  in 200 Vet Centers from Maine to Guam. During this time, the Vet Centers provided help to half a million persons with PTSD.

My practice is based on the proven success and effectiveness of psychoanalysis and psychodynamic psychotherapy, and is influenced by the work of D. W. Winnicott, among others. I strive to help create a therapeutic relationship where a person can find his or her deepest strengths and creativity.

Listed in the 2014 edition of “Guide to America’s Top Psychiatrists.” My practice includes all varieties of emotional and life difficulties. I have provided specialized treatment for after effects of extreme trauma (war, assaults, accidents,etc.) for over 35 years.

Why I became a therapist

I have  deep interests in freedom of expression, spontaneity, getting in touch with emotions, and with people working creatively together—ever since becoming a jazz pianist at the age of 12.

My interest in psychotherapy and psychoanalysis began in college, where like many who become analytic therapists, I discovered Freud, Jung, and their colleagues. I also became drawn to dreams and the modern art movement of surrealism.

In medical school, my interests grew from working with one of our pediatrics professors, Dr. Benjamin Spock, a mentor in family clinic. My experiences with his interactions with babies, children, and medical students were invaluable.

My formative entry into psychiatry and psychoanalysis occurred with ten years of  teaching at Yale and practice in New Haven.

I then had a life-changing experience during two years Army service as a psychiatrist, including a year in the Viet Nam War. Life in a war in the developing world is painful and illuminating, and was the seed for my later extensive work in the trauma field (see separate section on Trauma), which I added to my heart-felt focus on psychoanalytic therapy.

I now work as a therapist and analyst, working with people with a range of difficulties from anxiety to relationship issues including work with survivors of all kinds of trauma, in wars, disasters, within the family, or wherever in life.