LaVerne Merritt-MorrisonLMHC

Headshot of LaVerne Merritt-Morrison LMHC


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How do you determine therapy goals with clients? What does that process look like?

I have learned that the client determines their own therapy goals and what they want to achieve in therapy. Therapy is driven by the client, utilizing the client centered approach with motivational interviewing allows the client to determine their therapy. Asking the client what he/she would like to address and only moving forward when the client is ready to forward. Utilizing CBT through the process of therapy and assisting the client to recognize the situation in the environment. His/her thought/belief they may interpret about the situation. The emotion/feelings that occur which influences the thought/belief and the behavior of our outward responses or actions in response to the situation. This allows us to change the negative self-talk to positive self-talk.

In what ways have your personal experiences influenced your work with your clients?

I recognized that I had been experiencing adversities in my life. Learning how to navigate those adversities influenced me to work in the field of Human Services to empower others to learn how to navigate their own adversities. Coming into this field has allowed me to recognize that we all experience adversities in life and how we navigate those adversities allows us to learn about ourselves and people we encounter.

In what ways do your life philosophy and treatment philosophy overlap?

My life philosophy in life and treatment, "I treat others they way I want to be treated". This is why I chose Maya Angelou's quote: "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."





LGBTQIA related issues

Women's issues

General Expertise



Work Stress



Anger management

Antisocial personality

LGBTQIA related issues

In-Network Insurance

Sana Benefits



First Session


Individual Therapy

Types of Therapy

Individual Session


Young Adults (18-24)

Adults (25-65)

Seniors (65+)

Treatment Approaches / Modalities

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Culturally Sensitive Therapy

Eclectic Therapy

Motivational Interviewing

Person-Centered Therapy


NY, LMHC, 003287


Fairleigh Dickinson University License Mental Health Counselor

Work History

I graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University, in Clinical Counseling with a Major in Addiction Counseling. In September 2006 I received my New York State, License Mental Health Counselor. I have over 20 years’ experience of substances use therapy, working with dual diagnosis (Mood D/O’s, Anxiety and Depression). I have worked with women, men and the LGBTQ community addressing comorbidity issues. I have several years’ experience working in transitional housing with individuals with chronic medical, mental health, and substance use complexities that are interwoven within our psychosocial factors. I have developed the skills necessary to help others to empower themselves. My approach to therapy is motivational interviewing utilizing stages of change. I use CBT and client-centered therapy to meet you where you are in the stages of change. When we need assistance to move forward in life, the most precious gift we could give to ourselves is self-care.