Karen Michelson, LPC, LMHC

I have wanted to be a therapist since I was about 10 years old. I also wanted to be a writer, live out West, and marry a cowboy. I have let go of the cowboy thing. I recently relocated to Colorado from New York, and my only regret is that I did not do it sooner. I love living close to the mountains. It is a place that speaks to my soul. Some people have asked me how I found the courage to make such a big change, and I have learned that one cannot wait to find courage to make a change. The courage comes in the doing. That knowledge helps me in my work with clients, as they work to make positive changes in their lives.

I have been on my own journey in this life, experiencing love, loss, fear, loneliness and disconnection, tremendous grief and great joy. These experiences have provided me with a greater ability to facilitate healing and to have insight and empathy for my clients’ challenges.

Parenting my three children has brought me the greatest joy, a healthy dose of worry and fear, and ultimately so much pride in the people they are becoming. I find that my experience as a parent provides both compassion for my clients’ own parenting issues, as well as an ability to come up with some solid solutions to help them with their parenting challenges.

I often see couples focusing all of their energy and affection on their children, but not able to address the issues or conflict in their relationship. I like to work with couples to find balance in creating a space for their relationship, while at the same time, helping them to see that strengthening their own bond is the greatest gift they can give their children.

I know the life-changing power that connection can bring. Admittedly, I am a person who prided herself on not needing anyone. Through my own personal work, my training, and life challenges that forced me to be open to change, I am reformed. I now know that we are hard-wired for connection. That we need to be able to turn to our partners for support and comfort, to share our fears and fantasies, and to know that they will be there ready to respond with love and patience. There are all sorts of things, like the family you grew up in, life experiences, and past relationships, that can affect us in a way that makes it difficult to connect, but change is possible! In fact, if we are going to work together, it is required!

In order for therapy to be productive, our relationship must be based on the ability for both of us to be our most authentic selves. I bring into the room my compassion, warmth, and openness. My spontaneity and humor are also very present, and my clients have told me that they feel relaxed and safe with me. Sometimes I can be silly, because life gets heavy and there are times we need to laugh. I love making a strong connection with clients, especially those who may be feeling very alone. I see my clients strengths and flaws, their humanity, and I adore them for it.

Some details: I am a licensed professional counselor (LPC) in Colorado. I am also a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in New York. I received my Master’s in Mental Health Counseling at Pace University and my BS in Psychology at St. Lawrence University, both in New York State.