Client Topics

• anxiety
• depression
• sense of self/ low self esteem
• stage of life struggles
• male specific concerns
• reaching specific goals
• correcting past negative patterns
• finding the right partner
• coping with Asperger Syndrome
• pre-marital
• relationship counseling
• marital counseling
• communication troubles
• dealing with a breakup/ divorce
• family concerns
• past abuse (emotional/physical/sexual)
• compulsive over eating/emotional eating
• weight lose surgery preparation
• coming out
• LGBT related issues/gender queer/gender fluid
•transgender/transexual transitioning emotional adjustment/mtf or ftm
• individual sexuality
• sexuality within relationships
• alternative sexuality acceptance
• sex workers
• polyamory/ non-monogamy/ poly families
• swinging/open relationships
• fetishes /BDSM/ kink


Anxiety can be an overwhelming sense that ideas, feelings and experiences are too much for you to handle. You might have racing thoughts, obsessive rituals, or even panic attacks. All of these symptoms and more are things that can be addressed and lessened through therapy. You can take your life back again and live much more peaceful life here in Madison.

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Depression can range from feeling sluggish, or experiencing physical pain, to dreading day to day. It is hard to want to do the things you once enjoyed when you seem to no longer be yourself. Things are just off somehow and you don’t have the energy or desire you once did. Depression is something that can be worked on with psychotherapy and changes can be made. You can feel again and have the strength to deal with feelings in a way that no longer seems as if it they are weighing you down.

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sense of self/self esteem

Self esteem can appear elusive at times. Your parents, friends, and society can tell you to be one way and maybe you feel otherwise. What if you don’t fit the mold? Or perhaps others are being critical of you and it’s causing you to doubt yourself. At your core you have a sense of self that is strong and able to guide you through life. With counseling in Madison, WI you can work to establish a stable being that knows how to make choices, feel confident, and reach your goals.

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stage of life transitions

Life is often challenging and to finding your place within it can feel daunting. You are at a certain age and you are supposed to go to college, have a good job, make a great living, start a family, and don’t forget the picket fence and dog. With all these expectations it can be a struggle to know how to manage it all. We are not always prepared for knowing exactly what the next step is for our lives. This is where seeing a therapist can help. You have the opportunity to bounce ideas off another person who not only accepts you as you are currently but wants to help you reach your goals.

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male specific concerns

Being male in Madison may give you a bit more leverage but overall our society still treats men with some outdated notions of “being a man”. The average person would lead us to think that men only want to talk about sports and go out for beers. And while there is nothing inherently wrong with this, the truth of the matter is that men are emotional and complex beings. Our culture may not provide many places for men to talk about their feelings, friendships, work situations, family lives, childhood, or even romance; however, therapy is one place that being a man means that you can be a full person not just a stereotype.

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correcting past negative patterns

Who we are is based on many things but how we were brought up often dramatically affects who we become. We often want to be the opposite of our parents or to emulate them. Either way if they were absent or omnipresent in your young life they influence you even today. This often shows up in the patterns of ourpersonal choices with work, friends, and most often romantic partners. If you see yourself stuck in a pattern that you want to get out of, then seeing a counselor in therapy can provide great insight into these issues. Having a therapist work with you from the outside to provide a fresh perspective on what you are doing on the inside will help you change your thinking which often leads to a change in pattern. Once you know better you do better.

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finding the right partner

Being single in a city like Madison, WI can be a pain when you want to be in a relationship and being in a bad relationship can be even worse then being on your own. Finding the right partner for you can be stressful because we are bombarded with ideas of what the “right” person should be. In psychotherapy you can discover the truest parts of yourself along with the core elements that you desire in a partner. Also if you tend keep finding relationships that are hurtful to you, counseling can help you break freak of those patterns by providing guidance into why you have made the relationship choices you have in the past and how to make better ones in the future.
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Asperger Syndrome

You have Asperger Syndrome (more commonly known in the community as Aspie) and almost no one knows what the heck that actually means. Wisconsin is a great place for helping those with Autism and Madison has many programs for children as well as adults dealing with the issues that come with it. However, Asperger Syndrome is different and for teens and adults it is rarely considered much more than “somewhat odd” in presentation among the general public. Yet for those that are Aspie it takes some getting used to in day to day life. A therapist can help you with how to handle being over stimulated with sense data, using stimming techniques to self soothe, basic language and communication skills that are often confusing, and most of all how to help others, including romantic partners, adjust to the specific needs that those with Asperger Syndrome.

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pre-marital counseling

So you think you are ready to get married? You have talked it over and taking the next step seems like the thing to do. But wait, what about all the details, what about paying for everything, what about having kids, making the romance last, making sure you are right for one another for real along with a thousand other questions about shared goals, expectations, and life living? Coming in to talk to a therapist about the reality of marriage can be very helpful for any couple that wants to last. Whether this is your first marriage, you have lived together for years, or this is your third time around the block, therapy can help you navigate the tricky roads ahead for you and your partner.

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marriage/relationship/communication counseling

Any long term relationship whether romantic, familial, friendship, or other can have problems. It is only natural over time that any two people who are in close contact are going to make each other a little bit nuts. It is how you deal with those concerns that keeps the relationship alive. Working with a therapist to dig into the parts of the couples relationship that keep you stuck, fighting, resentful, afraid, or stuck in patterns can make all the difference. Having a third party, as a couples counselor, to look at both sides as objectively as possible and to consider your “relationship” the client not just one or the other of you allows for change to occur. A marriage therapist understands that communication is key but how you two resolve differences and make up is also just as important for a stable life here in the Madison area. It is possible to not only remember the fondness you once had for one another but also to rekindle an intense connection.

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dealing with a breakup/divorce

When a relationship ends it hurts. There are no two ways about it. If you left the person or the person left you, your life is forever changed. It is hard at times to see past the pain of the current situation and how you handle all the daily tasks while dealing with the loss. However, talking to a psychotherapist can really help provide a path of clarity during this dark time. You have a place to vent, grieve, long, and heal from the situation in a way that is safe and helps you move forward.

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family concerns

There is a saying about how how your parents can push your buttons because they are the ones that installed them. This idea extends to just about all of our family members (whether by birth, adoption, or chosen). When you spend time with our families we somehow get stuck in a pattern that we just can’t seem to escape from. You are an adult but it seems that you are a child all over again and your folks are lecturing you. Or maybe your siblings are still trying to get attention and push you around. Whatever the situation basic family dynamics can make you want to pull your hair out. You love them but often you just can’t stand them. Seeing a therapist can help you put into perspective the patterns that you and your family create. Therapy can help empower you to make choices and help your voice be heard even during holidays, here in Madison or even out of state, when things seem most crazy! Counseling can teach you to communicate with your family in a new way that allows for less stress and strife.

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past /current abuse (emotional/physical/sexual)

Abuse is a subject that requires a delicate balance. If you have experienced someone taking advantage of you in any way without your permission there can be lasting effects. No matter what stage of understanding you are in about the abuse you experienced talking with a therapist in a safe environment can provide you with the strength you need to heal. You do not have to be a victim you are a survivor! The process is not easy but the results of having a secure sense of self to make choices that are healthy for you outweigh the hardship. Therapy can walk you through the process slowly and gently while encouraging you to overcome every step of the way.

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over eating/emotional eating

Madison is known for it’s amazing selection of restaurants, gourmet stores, and local foods. While this is a luxury we are happy to have sometimes eating becomes more than just giving your body the fuel it needs. It can often turn into stuffing your emotions down with each bite of food. This process often starts out as a coping mechanism, which was created to keep us safe from something. For many of us numbing out is what we do to not deal with emotions that feel too big or hard to handle. Over eating and emotional eating often go together as a way to create an illusion of control when things feel chaotic or even boring. Working with a non-judgmental therapist to look at your history, triggers, patterns, creation of the issue, and finding effective ways to monitor yourself can change your life for the better.

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weight loss surgery preparation and post operation

Most insurance providers in Madison, WI that will approve weight loss surgery (gastric bypass or lap band) do so with the provision that the person will work for six months to lose weight on their own before they are approved to move forward with the surgery. Also once approved as showing dedication to the process the person is asked to take a psychological exam. These factors can be extremely stressful to someone that is already dealing with the emotional and physical effects of their eating. It is in these times specifically that seeing a therapist in the Madison area that knows the local doctors for weight loss surgery preparation and post surgery are most important. Learning to change your psychology of emotional eating, dealing with the resentment of dieting, really feeling your feelings, and a host of other issues are worked through in therapy. Then even after surgery there are a million concerns about how you will look and feel, how friends and family will handle the change, and if you will be a totally different person or if the same patterns will present themselves again. Psychotherapy can help you through the whole process to make sure you are on the right track to move forward in a healthy lifestyle all with the encouragement and understanding that you can reach your goals.

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LGBT related issues/genderqueer/gender fluid

Being part of the non-majority can be difficult. You are labeled, criticized, cast out, and often made fun of simply for not conforming. Even in Madison where there is a strong LGBT community, the stress of living the perfect life, having the right partner, or fighting for rights can be exhausting. There is more to being lesbian,gay, bisexual, gender queer, gender fluid, asexual, or transgendered then just coming out. Those days are long gone. Now being under the LGBT umbrella encompasses a full life of expectations, goals, and relationships. Working with a psychotherapist accepts and understands these issues helps to provide you with and honest and real look at how to move through life’s challenges and joys while fully embracing yourself.

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transgender/transsexual/transitioning emotional adjustment/mtf or ftm

Gender identity is a complicated road to travel. Whether you feel like you should be a man/woman or always were a man/woman with differing body parts or not, the emotional confusion can be overwhelming. While Madison, WI does have many support groups for those that are interested in transitioning or already have, talking over the issues with a therapist is vastly important to the process. It can be scary to talk about these issues with someone but a counselor who is non-judgmental, honest, and real can work with you to find the answers to your questions. Concerns about male to female (mtf) or female to male (ftm) issues are vast and having a therapist to help navigate those issues is helpful. I can legally provide one of the required letters to support hormones or surgery. At your request, I will also be happy to speak with your other providers about how your therapeutic process is progressing. As your therapist, I will provide you with the emotional, psychological, and mental tools needed to deal with the process that is required to adjust to the person you have always felt you were all along.

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individual sexuality

How each one of us understands our own sexuality is crucial to our being. Whatever it is that turns us on is part of who we are and it is up to us if we are ashamed of or empowered by our sexuality. Finding your sense of sexuality is complex there are no black and white answers about what is sex in our mind. Whether you are struggling with accepting specific fantasies, your own sexual identity, the types of people that sexually interest you, or looking to explore sexual ideas in a non judgmental atmosphere then talking with a therapist is the right choice.

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sexuality within relationships

Sexual relationships are an entity unto themselves. How each person interacts with another is based on their own individual sexuality and that combination with the other person’s sexuality. Discussing sex, fantasies, and desires can be really sexy. Every one of us is afraid of being rejected and judged and having someone do so in regards to what we find sex is all the more fear inducing. This is a perfect place for a counselor to step in and help those involved talk about sexuality in a non-threatening way. Note: I am not a physician so I will not diagnosis health issues. As your sex therapist however, I can help you openly discuss concerns, excitements, and questions that you have about the role sex and sexuality plays within your relationship without fear of judgment.

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alternative sexuality acceptance

There are a number of sexual and gender identities to be had in Madison, but maybe you don’t know how to explore them, explain yours, or find acceptance with others. Sure you know about regular sex but you might have questions about more alternative explorations within the realm of sexuality. Counseling is a great place to talk about these sensitive topics without fear of judgment. You can ask your therapist any and all questions about sexuality and with an open environment of trust you can find the acceptance to explore or talk to others about your sexuality.

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sex workers

While Madison is a liberal place, it still can be hard to be part of the sex work industry and find acceptance. Many people do not understand that one can take pride in their career and it can be within the field of sexuality. If you are in pornography, the massage/escort business, exotic dancing, or work within any area of the sex industry then know that there is a therapist that understands how to help you manage the social, emotional, and personal pressures that come with the job. Not everything in your life is about what you do, however those within the sex industry often find it more challenging to feel accepted for their career choice. A therapist can provide confidential non-judgmental support, understanding, and strategies for achieving your goals in all areas of your life.

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polyamory/open relationships/ non-monogamy/ poly families/

We are lucky here in Madison, WI because there is a group of polyamorous people already established within the area. There are groups, clubs, get togethers, and the community is inviting. However, if you are brand new to the idea, want to talk to your current or potential partners about loving more than one person, come out to friends, the groups may be too much to start with. Also, if you already have a poly relationship dynamic set up dealing with the specifics of how personal matters work can be tricky. Yet talking with a therapist who is familiar with the issues of non-monogamy, sexuality, alternative forms of sexuality, jealousy, configurations, emotional struggles, new relationship energy, and acceptance of poly lifestyles can help you find your way more easily through multiple love choices.

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If you are not really interested in multiple romantic relationships but enjoy the sexual aspects of more than one partner then swinging is a choice that might be of interest to you. Madison has a strong swinging community however diving into it without fully understanding what you and or your partner want can be hazardous to the relationship. As will all sexual choices, alternative sexuality included, being open and honest with your partners about your desires is a must for solid primary relationships to form. You may be interested but unsure about the reality of swinging or not know how to talk to your partner about the possibility, these questions are totally normal. Still, even when partners agree on exploring sexually –individually or together– emotions run high. Having a therapist to talk about jealousy, fears, interests, and expectations is important for this type of relationship to work long term.

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BDSM/ fetish/kink

In the realm of alternative sexuality B.D.S.M. Is probably the most recognized. People may not know that the abbreviation is derived from the terms bondage, discipline, dominance and submission, sadism, and masochism. Overall people just think of someone being in control sexually and the other person being controlled (consensually of course). While there is still a taboo often associated with what is often called “non-vanilla-sex” , in actuality most people play with the concepts in the bedroom at some point in their sexual history. Many are interested in these ideas, have a D/s relationship, or are looking for something 24/7, including fetishes of all sorts and all flavors of kink and yet do not know where to start, how to talk about them, or where to meet others. Working with a sex therapist who is fully versed in the lingo, knowledgeable of the Madison WI kink-bdsm community, non judgmental, and understands the pros and cons of the “lifestyle” can greatly help you and your relationships find just the right balance.


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