Hi, I'm Amanda!
Why I'm a therapist
I’m passionate about helping people make choices and learn new skills that will move them toward more authentic and wholehearted living.
I’m here to provide a compassionate place for us to work together on life’s challenges. I specialize in working with individuals who experience grief and loss, depression, stress, and life transitions. I see the counseling relationship as a team effort, so as we walk through this together, you’ll learn new coping strategies and leave knowing there is hope.
My hope is that you’ll come to see the counseling process the way I do, as an act of courage. Whether you're sad, stressed, burned out, or just don't feel like you fit in, I'll help guide you through it.
Why am I a good fit for you?
Would you believe I actually went to film school before deciding to become a therapist? After graduating from college twenty years ago with a degree in Telecommunications, I moved out to California to go to film school with hopes of becoming a director and screenwriter.
Three weeks into my semester, my father was diagnosed with brain cancer and I had to drop out and return home to be with him and my family. He passed away two months later. I returned to film school a couple of months after his death, determined to finish my graduate degree. My grief was complicated though, and it soon turned into depression.
I decided to go to counseling at my school’s health center and shortly after, I started to feel better. However, about a year later my family called one day to tell me that my mother suddenly had a stroke and things didn’t look good. Fortunately, she survived but it became very clear early on that she would have significant disabilities as a result. Having already been struggling with depression, this news made my mental health much worse. I was barely functioning by then so I made the difficult decision to drop out of film school and move home to help take care of my mom. I took that year off to help with doctor appointments and her transition back home.
During that time, I started counseling and eventually got to a place emotionally where I felt hopeful about my future again. By that point, I knew that returning to film school wasn’t for me. Through my journey of grief, depression, and being a caregiver for my mom, I felt called to help people instead. I wasn’t passionate about film anymore and the thought of returning to that industry didn’t fill me with a sense of purpose. I was at a crossroads and decided to change course and become a Social Worker. In 2002, I returned to school. Later that same year I got my first social work job, and I’ve been in the social services field since.
Mom and was disabled for the remainder of her life and in October of 2017, she passed away. It was a hard road, and sometimes it still is, but I doubt I’d be a therapist now without that experience.
I share this with you because I want to convey that I understand what it’s like when the rug has been ripped out from under you. I know what it feels like when life throws us a curve ball and we’re not sure what to do next. My own experience with grief and loss and being a caregiver gives me a unique perspective and ultimately has made me a better therapist. I also share this because it’s important to me that I walk my talk. I can’t expect my clients to do the work if I’m not willing to do the same.
A little on my background
I’m a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Licensed Clinical Addiction Counselor and obtained my Masters in Social Work from Indiana University in 2007. I’ve been in the social services field for over 17 years and a counselor for the last 13 years. I spent many years as an addictions counselor providing treatment to adults with substance use disorders. I've also worked at county correctional facilities providing mental health counseling to inmates. My background also includes work with adults with severe mental illnesses, women in domestic violence situations, and people at risk for suicide.
Now I have my own practice where I provide individual and group counseling. In addition, I’m trained in Brené Brown’s, The Daring Way™, that helps to explore areas such as vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness.
Please check out the Services page for more information about individual sessions and The Daring Way™ group.
I look forward to meeting you soon!