Therapist Spotlight: Kate O’Brien, PhD, LCSW

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Across more than 20 years in behavioral health care, Dr. Kate O’Brien has worked in direct agency services, in private practice, and at the corporate level of an international Employee Assistance Company (EAP). In her private practice, she addresses clients issues through strategies drawn from solution-focused, cognitively-oriented, multicultural and social justice perspectives. Kate works out of our newly opened St. Louis-Clayton office. You can read her full bio here!

To make an appointment with Kate, please contact our intake department.

See below for more information about Kate!

What self-care techniques or activities do you do?

Walking, Tai Chi, Yoga, reading, and writing.

What made you become a therapist?

Realizing the potentials of communication to enrich or tear down others. I like to solve puzzles, and I feel joy when people discover solutions to their problems! Who doesn’t want to feel joy?!

What are your specialties?

Workplace issues, LGBQiA+ issues, transgender and other non-binary gender identities, marriage and family issues.

Why do you believe that counseling can help?

Through counseling, clients have the opportunity to work with a professional outside their everyday contexts, who can support them to make meaning in new ways. Meaning making is a process of learning. Often, someone who is external to our everyday practices, relationships, and habits can help change up the way we see things. In my psychotherapy practice I focus on client success. I want people to learn competence and confidence in navigating their problems and to understand their great worth as human beings.

Did you have a career before becoming a therapist?

I was a full-time mother before I became a therapist, and I’ve had other careers along the way. I helped build an international EAP business for ten years. It’s now owned by a major health care organization in the US. I’ve worked in family reunification, and as Director of an Adult Outpatient Psychiatric facility. I’ve been an editorial assistant and proofreader, and I write. In addition to being a therapist, I’m also a professor. No matter what I do, I am drawn to work with people!

Why is it important to seek counseling?

It’s important to seek counseling to address small issues before they grow to be big ones. Often as we move through life, we repeat patterns that undermine our own successes. Through counseling, clients can solve personal problems in the quiet space of an office with a psychotherapist whose full attention is theirs for an hour at a time. Over time, clients begin to access that quiet space in ways that are productive: to generate change and solutions.