Considering Online Therapy? Consider Amparo Penny!

Have you considered online therapy? Do you have questions about how it works? Do you want to be sure you’re connecting with a licensed, clinical psychologist?  Read on as I interview Amparo Penny, on online therapist who is available to help you online.
Hello Amparo.  Please tell us about why you went into therapy and chose the path of a clinical psychologist and what your philosophy is regarding therapy.

I have always wanted to help people. My name “Amparo” in Spanish means “I protect, I heal, I aid” so I always knew that I would do something to help other people. I think it was predetermined! As for therapy, I believe that people are inherently good – that there is some good to find in others. In my type of therapy, I am very strengths-focused because I think we need to start with your strengths, because that will help you grow. Let’s focus on your support system and what will help you succeed.

What drew you to specialize in DBT and helping those who have Borderline Personality Disorder?  Why are you so passionate about DBT?

I honestly have no idea why I was so drawn to DBT and people with Borderline Personality Disorder. But as I grew in my experience, I learned that we as humans thrive on validation and acceptance, and those that do not have that need to find ways to make it happen in their lives. I’m all about self-validation and affirming yourself because yes, we can be our worst critics, but we can also be our best affirming sources. I love that DBT embraces the Zen philosophies of acceptance and self-validation. Acceptance is so important! It does not mean that you have to “like” it, but you have to accept it in order to move past something and move on with your life.

Tell us about online therapy and how it works.  What should a client expect in a typical session?  Please also tell us about the Email correspondence option. How does that work?

Live Person is a pretty cool site. It only records the sessions so we as clinicians can have a playback, if we need it… but it is a very confidential site. All of us therapists there had to submit our licenses, malpractice insurance, etc. so it is not just a fake place! In a “typical” session, I usually try to help the person in 1 or 2 sessions. They present their issues and we deal with them. I have a few people that I have worked with over the course of a few weeks or so but normally the issue is resolved in a session or two.

I can accommodate both short-term and long-term sessions — whatever the patient needs.

As for email, some people like to email me about certain issues and we will write back and forth to address what their needs are. The first session is $20, but they can correspond with me as much as they want after the initial session.

You let me know that you are licensed to practice therapy in the state of North Carolina.  How does this work in terms of providing online counseling in other states or even other countries?

Yes, I am licensed in the state of NC, which helps for billing purposes. But because people are paying “out of pocket”, it doesn’t really matter what state we are talking about. It should be perfectly fine for me to work with you, regardless of where you are 🙂

How does confidentiality work when it comes to online therapy sessions?

The LivePerson site keeps our sessions confidential. We as clinicians do have the ability to review our sessions, but that is to help us in case there is an issue or if we need to note on any issues to the site but that’s about it. Your session is totally confidential to the general public!

What would you tell someone who has never tried online therapy before but is considering it?

I would tell them to try it! I have worked with a number of people online and they seem to get a lot out of our therapy sessions. Some come back for another session and some just get their issue resolved in one session, but I have seen a good result from my patients. Online therapy can be very convenient and easy to access for some people and I like that I can provide that service!

What are somethings you enjoy as a person, outside of your profession?

Oh wow! Let’s see… I am madly in love with Michael Jackson – all of my dogs have been named after him: Bad, Jackson, Thriller and now Billie Jean. I love to spend time with my family (2 gorgeous nephews) and my friends. My family and friends are MY anchor – they keep me in check. I think everyone needs a person/persons to keep them in check 🙂

What else would you like to share about you?

I love what I do as a therapist… I love to try and help instill hope in people that have lost it. And I really learn from my patients; they teach me just as I am teaching them. Even if I were independently wealthy, I could see myself doing therapy because it really makes a difference in people’s lives. I am not ashamed to tell people that I saw a therapist after my father passed away in 2007… it was very helpful to me. I think everyone could benefit from a 3rd-party, non-judgmental person in their lives to help them process things. Who wouldn’t love that?

You can reach Amparo in the following ways:

Thank you Amparo!  If you have any questions or comments for Amparo, please leave them below.  

Thanks for reading.
More Soon.
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