Today we’d like to introduce you to Taryn Feuerberg.
Hi Taryn, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
I tell my clients my story all the time! I had crippling anxiety and agoraphobia traits when I was a child; panic attacks, inability to eat, trouble making friends, and general anxiety so bad that I missed dozens of days of school. My parents found an amazing therapist who worked with me for years to help me identify anxiety symptoms and actively manage them, but things really got better the first time I tried medication. Everything clicked and I was finally able to effectively use the skills I had been practicing. I decided at 11 years old I, too, wanted to be a therapist and help people in the same way I had been helped.
Flash forward many years, and I am a licensed therapist with a doctorate in Couple and Family Therapy. I am in private practice full time as the founder and CEO of Community Mental Health Group, a nonprofit group therapy practice that places an emphasis on providing low-cost/sliding scale therapy/coaching sessions to members of the community who could not otherwise afford services.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
As with many people, the path has been challenging at every single step. During both my Master’s and Doctoral programs, I experienced multiple logistical challenges that delayed my graduation about 18 months, and for the duration of my pre-licensed career had to work in severely underpaying positions, which caused financial strain. I frequently had to take several jobs at a time while enrolled full-time to make ends meet.
I really struggled with balancing all of the things that I needed to do with things that kept me balanced and sane. Honestly though, this taught me a lot about who I am as a person and what I need emotionally.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
Although I see people with all kinds of presenting issues, I specialize in a few overlapping populations: LGBTQ+, gender-specific issues, and trauma/PTSD. What I also think is important for LGBTQ+ folx to know (and ask of any therapist you are vetting) is that at any given time, between 60-75% of my caseload identifies somewhere in the community. I want clients to know that they are truly safe with me and do not have to explain or validate their sexuality or gender for me.
What I am most proud of recently though, is the establishment of my non-profit private practice, Community Mental Health Group. CMHG is a 501(c)(3) non=profit group practice that serves two purposes:
1) Each provider must offer a percentage of sliding scale/low cost spots on their schedule for low-income members of the community who could not otherwise afford services.
2) CMHG provides a supportive no-cost startup space for pre/newly licensed therapists to build their practices. My early experiences in the field showed me there is a desperate need for this. Many are like I was, working paycheck to paycheck, skiddish about starting out on their own, with a history of abusive supervisors. CMHG works not just to provide low-cost services to clients but also to assist therapists and coaches with their marketing costs, trainings, business coaching, etc.
Is there a quality that you most attribute to your success?
I think my adaptability has been the most crucial to my success. You have to adapt to each client in front of you, to a work situation or conflict, to each new job or position. I also think that in adapting, I have to be thoughtfully responsive (rather than impulsive and reactive). This is true for supervising and managing client crises, but also TO MYSELF. I was trained to attend and respond to the needs of others but really had to learn over the last few years to pay attention to my needs too.
Attending to myself has made me far better and far happier than anything I have ever done.
- Individual session 45-60min- $150
- Couples session 90min- $225
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: www.communitymentalhealthgroup.com
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