Manassas VA Counseling for African-Americans

Counseling for African Americans in Manassas, VA

Certain negative social stigmas can make the choice to go to therapy more difficult than it should be, unfortunately. Not all people experience the stigma in the same way. Some feel it more acutely. A 2008 study revealed that one third of African American, who were currently participating in mental health care, thought that their friends and family members would see their decision to do so as “crazy.” These participants did not feel comfortable speaking about their anxiety or depression with their social circles. This mistrust is often understandable in light of historical abuses within the health care system toward the African American community. Many African Americans perceive going to therapy as airing dirty laundry with people outside of the community, and they seek out mental health care are lower rates than many other ethnic groups. A study conducted in 2010 found that White Americans receive care from a therapist or counselor at nearly double the rate as Black Americans. However, cultural attitudes may be shifting, as more recent studies show that the rate that African Americans are reaching out for mental health care are increasing.

The Washington Post article, “Therapists say African Americans are increasingly seeking help for mental illness,” recounts Jinneh’s experiences. As a teen, Jinneh lost her mother, and her counselor prescribed her an antidepressant to help her as she struggled with depression. Her community convinced Jinneh not to take the medication. In college, four years later, Jinneh was still depressed. A roommate convinced her to go back to counseling and start on the medication. Jinneh received the help she needed.

Jinneh’s story is told within the context of a larger trend. Psychologist Jeffrey Gardere said, “I’ve seen an increasing number of African Americans who feel increasingly less stigmatized about coming in and seeking therapy and who also recognize the healing power of therapy.” In the past decade, Dr. Gardere said he has seen an increase of 20-25 percent of the African Americans he sees at his practice.

Several factors are fueling this trend—increased awareness of mental health issues as well as increased access to mental health care are a few. Another is a growing awareness cultural sensitivity within the mental health community toward the needs of African Americans as they seek therapy. Thriveworks Manassas hopes to contribute to that sensitivity by offering therapy for African Americans.

Establishing Trust

Much of the stigma toward mental health care is grounded in distrust. African Americans have many historical reasons to be skeptical of any health care system, and additionally, unfamiliarity with mental health care is a factor. Many times, as people learn more about what mental health care involves, the stereotypes naturally fade and more trust is built. When individuals reach out to Thriveworks Manassas, they received individualized therapy. Here is what that may involve…

Therapists first and foremost seek to establish trust. The client is very much in control of the goals and pace of counseling. At the beginning of a therapeutic relationship, therapists and clients often take significant time to get to know each other so that the therapist can truly understand the client. One bedrock of good mental health is safety—a place where people feel that they can share their dreams and hopes, setbacks and challenges, successes and goals without shame or fear. For many people, therapy is that place.

The staff at Thriveworks Manassas understands that a big piece of trust is showing respect and sensitivity toward a client’s context—including their ethnicity. Some therapists may encourage an approach that is “colorblind” and does not acknowledge race. However, for many African Americans participating in therapy, their ethnicity and cultural background are factors in why they are seeking help. People are whole beings, and their ethnicity matters. Our staff is conscientious of how their own race and cultural background may bias them, and we are committed to building trust through empathy and respect.

As trust grows, the topics that a client feels comfortable addressing may grow as well. During therapy, many African Americans work through issues such as…

  • Discrimination
  • Career advancement
  • Grief counseling
  • Racial trauma
  • Child therapy
  • Divorce
  • Executive coaching
  • Anger management
  • Substance use
  • Obsessive-compulsive tendencies
  • Anxiety
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Eating disorders
  • Suspected abuse of a child
  • Depression
  • Job loss
  • Addiction
  • Infidelity
  • Psychiatric testing
  • Couples and marriage counseling
  • Sexual identity issues

A Cooperative Effort: Religious and Community Support

African Americans have a rich tradition of religions and community support, and at times, mental health professionals have positioned themselves in opposition to these other forms of support. The staff at Thriveworks Manassas understands that it takes a whole community, working together to support good mental health practices. Our professionals know that their clients are receiving vital assistance and encouragement from their community, friends, family members, and religious leaders. We do not want to replace these, but we want to come alongside to provide another form of support.

For example, when individuals face a serious mental illness, such as depression or anxiety, their friends, family members, and pastors can carry much of the burden, as can counselors and therapists. In fact, the best care is often from multiple sources. Communities can support individuals in ways that health care professionals cannot. Therapists and counselors can support individuals in ways that communities cannot. Let’s work together.

Scheduling Counseling at Thriveworks Manassas

If you are considering therapy, know that Thriveworks Manassas is ready to support you with care and respect. When you contact our office, you may have an appointment within 24 hours. We offer evening and weekend appointments, and many forms of insurance are accepted.

Let’s work together. Call Thriveworks Manassas for more information.

Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

People Love Our Providers!

Overall Rating: 5★★★★★ based on 17 5 1 17 reviews. See all reviews
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Depression

★★★★★
I believe my depression is coming from the lack of education, I have and the loss of so many jobs. It's finding but hard to keep a job. I'm embarrassed it has been hindering me for many years now I can't stand it I've been trying to get help for a while now and don't know where to go I am on suppression medication. I see a doctor every two weeks I have talked to him about this and until u was blacking the blue in the face. I think he sees it now. Thank good
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Great first experience

★★★★★
So far I’m having a great first experience with Therapy.
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Lisa

★★★★★
I started with Thriveworks and Lisa 3-4 months ago and I was nervous about telling a "stranger" my deepest issues and things I'm not always comfortable admitting myself. I have to say she has been amazing through an really tough relationship break and other things I was or am going through in life. She makes you feel comfortable and truly listens, providing support and options for situations which allow me to be able to look at situations differently. She has made an incredible improvement on my life and I always look forward to meeting with her. It has become a breath of fresh air for me. She is amazing and I consider her a friend. You can't go wrong.
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

So far I am liking my sessions and my counselor

★★★★★
So far I am liking my sessions and my counselor
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

My counselor is great

★★★★★
My counselor is great
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Lisa Cornelius- My wonderful experience with her.

★★★★★
I worked with Lisa Cornelius for more than 6 months and she really is amazing. She helped me through my struggles by giving me strategies that could help me involve my well being. She is honest and she will connect with your situation by putting herself in your shoes. I've never connected with a therapist like I have with her. She really knows what she is doing. I highly recommend her!
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Counseling appreciation

★★★★★
A note of thanks to my counselor Lisa Cornelius. I have seen her for 2 years now and through our sessions an finding that I am a good person who has needs and a future that I never knew at 72 I coukd look forward to. Our lives go full circle sometimes and after bad things happen we start to think we have no right to try to be anyone but who others think we should be....not true! Hopefully Lisa and I can continue this journey and I can learn to relax in the real me and be content and happy with myself...thank you Lisa ....
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Ms. Lisa

★★★★★
Ms. Lisa is a very amazing counselor. She helps you understand and can relate to you, which makes you feel better. Her way of counseling is different from past counselor. It was more dull with my past counselor, but with Ms. Lisa it is different. It is better to me. I definitely recommend Ms. Lisa because everytime I leave I feel lighter and a little bit better. 😊
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Shannon Oesch

★★★★★
Shannon Oesch is an excellent therapist and friend. I met Shannon years ago in Hawaii where I worked at a domestic violence shelter. Shannon came and facilitated a weekly support group and made a huge impact on many lives. Shannon is easy to talk to and a great listener!
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Shannon Oesch LCSW

★★★★★
Shannon was very supportive as a Clinical Supervisor and extremely knowledgeable and experienced in her field. She has helped me develop my clinical skills and competencies throughout my Social Work career.
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

It was an excellent experience.

★★★★★
It was an excellent experience. I have been suffering from high anxiety and was skeptical about talking with someone who didn’t know me. After my first session I could finally see light at the end of the tunnel. I cannot wait for my next appointments so that I can learn how to take my life back.
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

So far, so good!

★★★★★
So far, so good!
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Had a very pleasant conversation with Mary

★★★★☆
Had a very pleasant conversation with Mary. It’s difficult to tell if she’s the one for me. Went as inspected .
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Thriveworks is amazing.

★★★★★
Thriveworks is amazing. It is such a relief to feel you are connecting with someone who truly understands the root of your problems and gives you hope that you can work through them. I am very thankful for this place.
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Comfortable, compassionate and welcoming staff.

★★★★★
Comfortable, compassionate and welcoming staff. My daughter and I have been impressed with every aspect of our experience with Thriveworks. High five!
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Good sessions

★★★★☆
Good sessions
Thriveworks Counseling Manassas

Yes!

★★★★★
I've taken a tour of this counseling practice, and met some of the staff. This practice is way above par, for sure.
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Thriveworks Counseling

Schedule your first appointment with a Thriveworks Counselor or Life Coach!

  • 10755 Ambassador Dr STE 201,
    Manassas, VA 20109

  • Mon-Fri:7AM-12AM
    Saturday:7AM-6PM
    Sunday:8AM-5PM

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