I was born in AL, spent most of my childhood in suburban neighborhoods in KS and my teen years in SC, with two older sisters, my parents and lots of animals. I grew up in a time when family dinners were every night happening and most parents stayed together, whether they were happy or not. I saw the effects of substance abuse, domestic violence, depression, ADHD and anxiety in the lives of family members and neighbors. Problems like “those” weren’t talked about nor was professional treatment. People were expected to suck it up, avoid, and ignore their inner turmoil. I was always the observer, who would sit back and watch things unfold – I could hear what wasn’t said and felt a connection with friends and family who were suffering. I guess you could say, I was intuitive from a young age. This fascination of the human condition was what led me to Psychology.
After earning a B.A. in Behavioral Science; I completed my M.A. in Clinical Psychology and became an LPC (Licensed Professional Counselor). I spent the next few years completing my internship at residential treatment centers, Psych. hospitals and community mental health centers working with children, adolescents and families. I did everything from case management, being a clinical therapist, to social work. I liked the work so much that I continued it until 2005, when I decided to go into private practice.
How I work:
1. I will compassionately honor where you are in your therapeutic journey/healing while respecting your own pace. I will not try to persuade you, intimidate you or “make” you do what you’re not willing/able to do.
2. I will encourage you to establish your individual therapeutic goals and assist you meeting those goals. I will not pursue my own agenda over yours.
3. I will remind you that you’re not broken, you won’t stay “stuck” forever and H.O.P.E (hold on pain ends) I will not try to fix you or stand in judgment of your life.
4. I will provide honest/direct feedback to you while honoring your individual choices. I will listen to your feedback, negative and positive, and will adjust your therapy accordingly.
5. I will give your room to access your own wisdom and recognize you as the expert on your own life. I will not take away the hard stuff for you but I will walk with you, encourage you and support you while helping you understand what is happening emotionally, mentally and physically along the way.
In a nutshell:
“Start now. Start with fear. Start with pain. Start with doubt.
Start with hands shaking. Start with voice trembling, but start.
Start and don't stop. Start where yo are and with what you have.
Norma McCarthy, LPC