People come to therapy for many different reasons, often feeling stuck or overwhelmed when they reach out. My job is to help you feel safe, valued and supported so that together we can figure out the best path for you to embrace joy and pleasure and find self-acceptance in being who you are, no more or less. I hope this website will help you get a sense of who I am as a therapist. Because it’s not easy to know whether a therapist will be a good fit for you or not, I am happy to speak with you on the phone for a free consultation.
I practice psychotherapy as a licensed clinical social worker. My training is grounded in psychodynamic theories, but I have an eclectic treatment approach that considers the inter-relatedness of mind and body. I have also trained in cognitive-behavioral techniques for depression and the spectrum of anxiety disorders. As an intern at the DC Rape Crisis Center, I trained in somatic experiencing and other trauma-informed techniques that are part of a burgeoning field of the psychology of the body. In brief, it seems that our body can tell us things that our minds may not “know” yet. Psychotherapy, along with techniques that deepen mindfulness or that tap into our brain’s amazing capacity to heal, such as guided imagery, can literally rewire the brain. This is the neurological basis for profound shifts in the way we experience ourselves and others, for transformation, and for hope. I have found that these tools can be tremendously helpful for people struggling with anxiety, depression, the sequelae of childhood sexual abuse, weight management, insomnia, feelings of disconnectedness, and other distress.
My goal is to create a safe and warm environment, especially for people who may fear being judged, so that together we can work through painful life experiences or perhaps help you feel more connected to your true self and purpose in life. Therapy can enrich your life in unforeseen yet exciting ways.
Before becoming a therapist, I taught linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin, where I also received my PhD. I was a NIH postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington in the Speech and Hearing Sciences Department. I received my MSW from the Smith College School of Social Work.
I am an active member of the Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy and a current Board Member of the Mid-Atlantic Group Psychotherapy Society.
Read my latest column "The body: What does it know that we don’t?" by clicking here.
Watch Dr. Willerman give a talk to employees of the Fairfax County Public School system on stress and heart health (15 min video):
I provide individual psychotherapy for adults, ages 18 and over.
- Anxiety disorders
- Depression and mood disorders
- Conflict in families or at work
- Race and ethnicity issues
- Binge eating
- Weight Loss
- Chronic health issues including chronic pain
- Life’s transitions such as retirement
- Grief and loss
- Trauma and PTSD
- Childhood sexual abuse
- Sexual trauma
- Sleep and insomnia
Group therapy can help people have healthier and more satisfying relationships in which they feel more comfortable expressing their true feelings and desires. In group we learn about ourselves and importantly, who we are with others. Group is a powerful modality and can be a good adjunct to individual therapy. I am currently in the process of forming a group.
Fees, Insurance & Cancellations
I do not participate in insurance and therefore I am considered an out-of-network provider. However, many insurance companies/policies reimburse you a portion of my fee. Please call your insurance provider to ask what their out-of-network rate is for psychotherapy, as well as to find out if there is a deductible you must first meet. Payment of my fee is due at each session. I accept cash, check and most major credit cards. At the end of the month (or more frequently if you request) I will provide you with an insurance-friendly statement of services that will have all the information you need to submit for reimbursement.
Individual therapy sessions last from 50-55 minutes and are billed at $160/session.
Group therapy sessions last 90 minutes and are billed at $75/session.
I have a 48-hour cancellation policy. Cancellations made with less than 48 hours notice are subject to a charge of the full fee. There are some exceptions to this policy, such as weather conditions that make it dangerous to drive.
1355 Beverly Rd. Suite 225
McLean, VA 22101