Office Location: Bethesda
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Amy Kohn McNelly is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who works with individuals, couples, and adolescents/families. She specializes in treating mood disorders including depression, anxiety, and anger issues as well as issues related to substance abuse, traumatic experiences, loss, chronic illness, relationship issues, sexuality, and identity concerns.
Originally from Northern California, Amy has had the opportunity to live in various locations across the US, and has been in the DC area for over a decade. Her background has included leadership positions as well as direct services, in settings ranging from private practice to hospital and residential settings.
TREATMENT FOCUS AREAS
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- Couples Therapy
- Depression/Anger/Mood Regulation
- Anxiety/Panic/Stress Disorders
- Addiction and Substance Abuse Recovery
- Trauma Recovery
- LGBTQ Supports
- Transgender Supports
- Life Transitions/Grief/Loss
- Health Related Concerns
- Children/Adolescents/Parenting/Family Therpay
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
I tailor my approach to meet the needs of each individual, and strive to understand each individual within their unique context, without making assumptions. The tools and interventions I provide in therapy are based on cognitive-behavioral, psychoanalytic (learning from our past experiences) and trauma-informed (developmental psychology focused on removing constraints and building support to learn new capacities).
I also have experience with multicultural, diverse environments and can sensitively incorporate these factors into our work together.
I value the relationship I have with you and view this as a key to success in any therapy. My goal is to create a safe, warm, and non-judgmental environment where you’ll feel heard and understood.
I’m skilled at helping people experiment to try on new mental habits or behaviors that are more efficient at navigating stressful experiences or hardship. This holds true in my work with couples, where I create structured conversations where each partner has a healing, encouraging space to work out complex feelings while maintaining connection to their partner and deepest values.
I love helping couples get to the underlying issues that are causing their conflicts and helping partners communicate with each other more effectively. Most importantly, I can help you strengthen the bond between you and your partner in order to create a secure, loving foundation for your relationship.
I specialize in treating trauma and appreciate the opportunity to instill hope and build connections with those who previously thought that such healing and a sense of empowerment were not possible. I’ve been able to help my clients move towards a life that is not dominated by their traumatic experiences.
- BA In Psychology/Human Sexuality, San Francisco State University
- MA In Counseling Psychology, Notre Dame De Namur University
- Interned at The Menninger Institute Early Childhood Outpatient Treatment Program
- Interned at Stanford University Hospital
- Research Assistant with Albert Bandura at Stanford University, topic “learned coping mechanisms”
- Live observation study of Irv Yalom’s group therapy techniques, Stanford University Psychiatric Hospital
MEMBERSHIPS & AFFILIATIONS
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- American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
- Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis
- Washington Society of Psychoanalytic Psychology
- Washington Professionals for the Study Of Psychoanalysis
- Volunteer Therapist for Student Veterans of America’s National Veteran’s Center
Or call Amy directly at 202-629-1949 ext. 12
Here are some clinical issues that I work with frequently, and typical goals of therapy:
- Improve communication – create safety to talk about vulnerable subjects with respect and care.
- Transform relationship conflict into connection – deal constructively with negativity and gain healthier, more balanced expectations for your relationship.
- Infidelity – find out what created the opportunity for an affair, whether you can really work it out and stay together and discover ways to repair your relationship.
- Pre-marital and pre-parental counseling – discuss some common issues that arise for couples as they are preparing for marriage or expanding their family.
- Intentional Parenting – become a parent your child respects and listens to without coercion or punishment.
- Improving your success in relationships – gain confidence with being yourself and relating to others.
- Women’s mental health – resolving gender-based stress, depression, and difficulty in the workplace.
- Identity development – identifying where you are in your racial/ethnic identity development and/or gender or sexual identity development and how it may be impacting your life.
- Managing moods (depression, anxiety, chronic stress) – take control of your life and free yourself from fear and worry.
- Grief counseling – find forgiveness and stability as you grow from tragedy or loss.
- Healing from trauma and adversity – restore a healthy balance and rhythm and find new meaning in your life.
- Substance abuse – receive personal support in your recovery to identify and heal the pain that keeps triggering your drinking, smoking, or other drug use.