Beginning the journey into therapy is not always the easiest thing to do. Being vulnerable enough to acknowledge and admit you may benefit from therapy is one of the bravest things I believe one can do. Being vulnerable is a strength one possesses and not a weakness. The process of looking for that “perfect” match with a therapist can be hard and even finding the time and money for therapy can also present as a challenge. Here at Helping Moon Counseling, we understand the many circumstances one might be struggling with, and we understand the hesitation that might come hand in hand. We all work together to let all of our clients know that what waits for you in therapy is a safe space to seek out your understanding and healing, always at a pace that feels right for you, and with a competent counselor at every step of the way to guide you.
I want to take this time and welcome you to the beginning of your journey in therapy. You have made an important choice for yourself, and I want to tell you a little bit about myself. My name is Amanda Pereira, and I am a Master’s Student Intern at Helping Moon. I will be graduating from Nova Southeastern University in August 2023. I am working on my Master’s degree with a dual concentration of mental health counseling and applied behavior analysis. From a very young age, I have always felt a call to the counseling field as it is a passion of mine to assist people around me in any way possible. I have always found it interesting how unique each and every one of us are and have always been curious in how the brain works with questions like, “Why do we feel the things we feel? Why is it important to show emotion to one another? Why do my emotions linger longer than other times?” It was when I was finishing high school that I realized I wanted to be a therapist and help as many people as possible to get one step closer to the versions of their best selves.
Fast forward to present day, I am realizing in my internship I am exactly where I am meant to be. As a therapist, I strive to be the most authentic, empathetic, and caring towards all my clients. I welcome you to come into a safe space that I hope I can provide you for you to laugh, cry, yell, or sit with the silence as you control the pace we go at as I guide you with a gentle hand. In session, there is no judgement, only acceptance. I strive to make sure you feel heard, and I am passionate about all my work with each of the clients that come my way.
If this is your very first time in therapy, once again, I welcome you. I am sure you have many questions. You might even hold some of the myths society says regarding counseling: “Oh? You want therapy? Something must be wrong with you,” or “Just get over it and do not think about (insert your issue at hand here) and you will be fine!” I want to tell you that seeking therapy does not mean something is ‘wrong with you’ and often times, not addressing an issue at hand can usually make is bigger or worse in the long run. I believe every one of us can benefit from having someone there to be able to share and speak our feelings with and assist us in making some sense of the issues/stresses that we face.
You may have other curiosities regarding therapy and that is okay too. One might wonder how “sitting on camera or a couch talking about how I feel” can help? You might also wonder if you can truly ever feel comfortable in opening up with your true thoughts with someone else that is a complete stranger at first? You might even worry that you will be judged by the therapist, or you might feel you will have nothing to say. I get it. Those are all valid concerns to have. I will assist you in taking therapy at the pace that feels right for you. I will strive to build a relationship with you, and you can expect I will try to get a real good sense of who you are. I believe therapy is never a place for us to judge, but to help you make sense of your own experience. During these sessions you might cry, and you will also laugh. Sometimes you will leave sessions feeling like you have made great improvements and changes to improving yourself and sometimes you will feel worries on whether or not progress is being made or how it seems like it is taking forever. I want you to know that in this journey, you will never be alone, and I will be by your side through the journey.
If you are returning to therapy, welcome back. This, too, is an important step. You might know what you are expecting out of this journey. You have a sense of what it is to work with a therapist, and you might even have both good and bad experiences with therapy. I would love to learn how your past therapeutic journey was like for you. I am ready to learn what things did not work well for you and continue the things that you found useful in this new journey.
In this space, I want you to know that you are free to ask any question you might have and tell me anything that might be on your mind. I have worked with and helped clients who are overcoming anxiety, depression, past traumas, self-doubt, self-esteem issues, and anger issues both in individual sessions as well as group sessions. I have heard many unique stories and many different life experiences. I have also worked on encouraging my clients to connect with their inner-child and begin healing from there. I utilize CBT, DBT, client/person-centered therapy, and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy.
Coming into this, you can expect me to be kind to you and listen to your issues and perspective. You can also expect me to work closely with you to bring relief and possible solutions to your concerns. My first step in your journey is to create a trusting environment for you. You might be nervous coming into this journey, or you might be excited and looking forward to start. Regardless of which, I am glad you made the decision to work with me or any one of us at Helping Moon Counseling. I cannot wait to get to know you!
“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” —Buddha
• Registered Behavioral Therapist, RBT-19-83027
• Master’s Degree in Counseling, Mental Health Counseling & Applied Behavior Analysis, from Nova Southeastern University
• Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Florida International University