A person in a deep orange and teal scarf faces the woods. Their blue and brown hair is pulled up.

Therapy for wanderers

Find your way to living

 on your own terms.

Unconventional. Unapologetic.

Confidently, Creatively You.

Audacious authenticity awaits.

(who are feeling lost).

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Serving

'Fiercely Independent' Adults Navigating Relationships, Grief and Anxiety Online Across Virginia and In-Person in the Charlottesville Office

For as long as you can remember,
you've felt a bit 'different.'

A walking contradiction? More than once you've been described as someone who colors-outside-the-lines and thinks-outside-the-box. 

And, while your imaginative, analytical mind is in many ways a huge gift the uncomfortable truth is:

 

Being 'unique' can feel super f*cking lonely

The idea of fitting in seems totally absurd, but at the same time being on the inside seems downright cozy. That stings a bit. 

Yet, here you are. Trying to hold it all together on your own.  

Independence, uniqueness:
that's one double-edged sword

In short, it feels like isolation. 

Which is more than a smidge confusing. Isolation mixes with a little swell of pride: the reward of not being a bother to anyone; fiercely independent.

With one foot in two worlds: simultaneously you're creative, analytical, a lover of expansive ideas and also painfully invisible.

 

You've seen that society rewards people who fit in and that simply isn't you - or - if you've managed to blend in it's been by hiding your vulnerable truths

Carrying in your heart a deep desire for belonging, connection, for space to show up confidently as all of yourself and have that be seen and appreciated. It's such a deep want and at the same time is both scary and doubtful.

The thing is, the barrier, is that getting visible - showing up as yourself - feels awkward, uncomfortable, and unwelcome. 

You've been trying your damnedest to critical-think your way through this. Thought and thought and thought about it, but to your frustration you haven't unlocked the algorithm for unabashed authenticity and human connection.

It's uncomfortable to even think about getting support when you're accustomed to going it alone. That 100% makes sense.

Wrestling with anxiety and self-doubt, exhausting yourself trying to work things out, you know you need some outside help. You question whether therapy will work for you.   

Here is a space for questioning.

It makes total sense that your problem-solving mind would struggle alone for a long time and question whether therapy is for you. You may find yourself asking, "Will therapy even work for me?"

So much about whether therapy is effective is based on relationship: the trust established with the therapist to turn towards pain in order to heal from it. That can feel super vulnerable and scary. Knowing this, we begin by equipping you with the tools you need to go there when you're ready to. 

 

In this practice questions are welcome. Questions about therapy. Questions about identity. Questions about the world at large and the impact it has on you. Oppressive systems at large? Let's question it.

The question for you is: How much longer will you struggle alone?

Things can be different. 

Imagine the future after therapy. There your are: living your life as your creative, imaginative, one-of-a-kind self, no longer held back by fear or self-doubt.  

In therapy you've found yourself challenged and cheered for. You've healed and grown in ways you couldn't  imagine at the beginning.

You're preparing to leave therapy with a new sense of confidence in yourself, equipped to manage difficult thoughts and feelings.

How do you meet that future self?

That starts today, with you reaching out
.


 

A foggy copse of gnarled trees creates the background for a quote on wildnerness.

The Wilderness holds answers to questions
man has not yet learned to ask. 

-Nancy Newhall

Helen, a red-haired femme, leans forward with a direct gaze as their chin rests in their hand.

I celebrate you. In my practice I am dedicated to providing a secular space for people to grow in self-acceptance while healing from grief, loss & anxiety. You having space to be yourself matters to me.

My own experiences of grief, anxiety, and feeling constrained by self-doubt inform my practice. These are complicated by being a secular feminist living in the Southern United States. Through these experiences, I am acutely aware of how vital validating support is. 

People describe me as easy to connect with. Balancing irreverence with compassion, I show up as myself in hopes that it helps you to do the same. 

Dark-humor and swearing happen here, as do growth and healing. 

I am passionate about helping clients celebrate their unconventional selves despite living in a world that rewards conformity. Yes, while we haven't met yet, I'm rooting for you.

Meet Helen.

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How to get started

Connect Today. From the Contact page you can send a message or schedule a free online consultation directly on the calendar. Once scheduled, you'll receive a reminder a couple days before the consultation with a link to secure video chat. Scheduling a free consultation does not make you a client. Intake forms, available in the portal, must be completed before any 55 minute psychotherapy session. 

Please note that Helen Dempsey-Henofer, LCSW does not offer crisis services. If you are in need of immediate mental health support, please call 911 or see the list of hotline options from the Contact page.

Visit the Contact page for directions to the office and to ask any questions you may have.