Highly Sensitive Persons
It was not until I was 47 years old that I learned that I am a Highly Sensitive Person. It was then that I read a book called The Introvert Advantage because I wanted to try and understand why I needed to be alone so often and have more “downtime” than other people I knew.
I had always felt different and did not know why. While this book resonated with me to some degree, it did not explain everything. In The Introvert Advantage, however, she referenced another book called The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron, Ph.D.
The title caught my attention. At my first opportunity, I went to the library and checked it out. I think it took me all of two or three days to finish. I could hardly put it down. I was overwhelmed with emotion as I felt like she had written this book just for me. It suddenly all made sense.
Normal. Just different.
I was not flawed or defective. There was nothing wrong with me! I was just different. It was incredibly validating and literally life-changing.
I have learned to fully integrate it into who I am and not only accept it but to embrace it. However, it has not been an easy journey. I understand the pain that comes with being different.
My passion for helping other Highly Sensitive People is a direct result of my own struggles to come to terms with this normal trait.
Baby Boomers & Loss
When I was eight years old, my father died suddenly. He was 34. My mother became a widow at the age of 33 and was left with two teenagers and me to raise by herself. In 1969, children’s grief was not understood and death was certainly not talked about. I then experienced many other subsequent losses in the next few months, including the death of my father’s 28-year-old brother, the auctioning of our farm, a move to the suburbs of Kansas City, the many animals I loved and the attention and nurturing of my mother due to her own grief and depression.
All of this unresolved grief led to years of depression and dysfunction. It was not until I was 37 years old that I found a therapist who understood these issues. However, when I was 39, my mother suddenly died at the age of 65.
Healing, Growth, and Realization.
It was then that I had to find meaning in all of the pain and loss that I had been through. I realized that it was time to pursue my dream of becoming a therapist. So, at the age of 40, I began graduate school and earned a Master’s Degree in Social Work two years later, exactly 20 years after receiving my Bachelors Degree in Social Work.
Experience and Credentials
I have the life experience AND professional education to help you gain some peace and stability. I know what it is like to sit across from a therapist and feel vulnerable and raw. AND I also know how taking the risk, feeling the pain, and the doing the work changed my life and allowed me to become who I am now and help others on their journey. Please know that you are not alone.
What to expect
Free initial telephone consultation
Research shows the relationship between you and your therapist has the biggest impact on the effectiveness of your therapy.
If you would feel more comfortable talking with me to ensure that it’s a good “fit” before making an apppointment, I offer a free 30-minute telephone consultation. Contact me to enquire about a telephone consultation.
Session rates and times
Session start times:
Mondays 9 am - 12 noon
Tuesdays 10 am - 4 pm
Thursdays 10 am - 4 pm
If for some reason, we cannot schedule your session start time during my regular hours, contact me to enquire about making special session arrangements.
50-minute individual session is $120.
On a case-by-case basis, you may choose or I may recommend 90-minute sessions; 90-minute sessions are $150.
How often your sessions occur will be determined by both you and your therapist.
I accept Medicare and Aetna insurance.
Forms of Self Payment
Payment is required at the time of your appointment. Cash, check, health savings accounts and all major credit cards are accepted for payment.
I require 24-hour's notice of cancellations. If you do not show up for your scheduled therapy appointment, you will be required to pay the full cost of the missed session. If you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled session start time, I assess a $50 late cancellation fee.