I am a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Clinical Trauma Professional (CTTP) in the Washington, DC metropolitan area and licensed in all 3 states (DC/MD/VA). I own/run a small private practice – ADDvantage Counseling, LLC. I provide contractual therapy services through Alma.com and Headway/DCVA Counseling and Psychotherapy (until April, when I will be completely independent). I have worked in the mental healthcare field since 2012 with core service agencies (CSA’s), intensive outpatient centers (substance abuse) and private practices.
I specialize in working with adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD); anxiety; work-life balance, and with individuals who have a history of substance misuse, are in active long-term recovery, or are questioning whether or not they might need to stop drinking/using.
You will learn how to become your own best advocate, as I am passionate about helping others learn and leverage their strengths and increase self-esteem. I know what it is like to be stigmatzied for being neurodiverse, for self-medicating with substances (I’ve been active in maintaining long-term recovery), and for having emotions that went every which way with no healthy way of dealing with them (a/k/a poor or ineffective coping mechanisms).
HOW IT WORKS
All clients can work with me online via teletherapy using a HIPAA compliant platform. DC and MD clients also have the option of in-person sessions in your neighborhood or on a farm; where we’ll focus on animal and nature assisted interventions. Successful therapy is engaging!
We’ll work together using traditional talk therapy mixed with concrete skills building and a bit of “woo” (if you’re into/open to it) -think free-writing, lyric-analysis, and card cues (reflection/action oriented therapy decks, as well as Eastern and Indigeneous philosophy sets. I offer both individual and group counseling sessions.
Direct pay sessions are $185 and I accept BCBS (with Headway), as well as Aetna, United, Optum and Cigna (with Alma).
I am also a writer and author of the #1Best Selling Book, Soundtrack Of A Misfit: Adventures in ADD & Addiction available on Amazon. It’s a coming of age memoir which highlights my personal struggles and accomplishments as an individual with both learning disabilities and ADHD.
Soundtrack of a Misfit: Adventures in ADD & Addiction is my first large published work. My memoir was inspired by my struggles with Attention Deficit Disorder, as much as it was fueled by my passion for adventure and escape through music and (later) addiction.
I’m a Washington, D.C. native who came of age in the mid-eighties amidst the local punk scene and the rise of MTV. I wanted to be a rock star but I wasn’t brave enough to stand my ground. ‘Good ‘Jewish girls didn’t pierce their noses or wear ripped fishnet stockings with safety pins down the sides.
I always felt like a misfit; the disorganized lone wildflower shoved into a tidy bouquet of orderly roses. But I eventually found my way.
I was told by a psychologist, that the severity of my ADD would preclude my going to college. Yet, I’ve completed two vastly different graduate school programs (the first while backpacking throughout the country and living in a consensus-based community).
My ‘otherness’ led me to drink, job hop, and live on both coasts. I’ve been a barista, a Montessori Elementary school teacher, and a Recycling Specialist.
Today I’m proud to call myself a wildflower. I’m still not the most organized but I’m a fervent mental health therapist who uses my experience with ADD and addiction to help others. Therapist by day — home karaoke singer by night.
It was 1976 – the heyday of disco and classic rock, I was too young to know despair but old enough to experience bewilderment and frustration. Listening to music was already my primary means of refuge. There’s a newspaper article my mom saved. Every time I come across it, my stomach sinks to my feet like it does when I fly and the plane hits a patch of turbulence. The photo in the article was of me. I ache for my five year old self – who wore a smock and stood in front of an easel easily twice my size.
I no longer wore a boy’s crewcut – courtesy of my best friend Nonnie, who was overzealous in playing hairdresser. My ash brown hair was long again. I wore it in a disheveled ponytail held fast with rubber bands that had colored plastic baubles on either end of them.
I became more impulsive and unintentionally divisive the older I became. I longed for my parents (I refer to my mom and stepdad as my parents) to praise me for my brave ambitions, such as becoming a punk rocker but all I ever heard was, “Rach, your head is in the clouds. Put your feet on the ground.” I knew I had it in me to become a scuba-diving paleontologist who sang in a rock band, but my parents saw me as unfocused and “all over the place.” I longed to be bold and rebellious like those I literally, as well as physically, looked up to. I was also smaller than everyone else in my classes—always.
I have presented clinical material to DC Mental Health Counselors Association and at Kolmac Outpatient Recovery Centers, and am available for speaking/reading engagements. The launch of my memoir in 2021 coincided with the global pandemic of COVID and a personal loss. However, I am available for both therapy and Soundtrack Of A Misfit related engagements.
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