Meet Colleen Andre, Licensed Mental Health Counselor
It is scary to admit you need help. Scary to actually call and get help. But as I have seen working as a counselor for the last 6 years, it is much scarier and ultimately heartbreaking to live a life in fear and constant pain.
You did the right thing in seeking help today! I believe you made the hardest but best decision for yourself. And with a little guidance, you or your teen can change to thrive in your lives instead of just surviving.
- Anxiety: Work-life Stress, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, General Anxiety
- Trauma: PTSD, Childhood Pain, Abuse History, Automobile Accidents
- Motherhood Wellness: Pregnancy or Post-birth Depression & Anxiety, Birthing or Delivery Trauma
- Life Transition Issues: Career Confusion or Change, Post-Divorce/Separation Life, Newly Singleness or Break-Up
- Teens & College Students: Adjustment to Divorce & Separation, Self-Harm or Cutting, Low Self-Esteem, Graduation Depression or Anxiety
I also have a passion to work with individuals dealing with cultural and race-related issues:
- Difficulties Adjusting To The Surrounding Culture
- Multicultural and Racially Different Family Makeup
- Confusion or Rejection of Cultural Identity
- Struggles with a Sense of Belonging
Post Traumatic Stress Symptoms or Disorder (PTSD)
Wondering if this applies to you? Ask yourself if you experienced any of these symptoms
- intruding memories/thoughts of the past
- feeling jumpy
- easily agitated or angered
- avoiding people, places, and activities reminding you of the past
- feeling on edge or “on guard”
- exaggerated startled response
If this sounds all too familiar then you may be experiencing post traumatic stress symptoms or disorder and can benefit from EMDR therapy.
After working as a counselor for the past 6 years I have heard of my clients being dissatisfied by what is called “coffee-talk counseling.” Sitting around chatting about life and learning about yourself is often not enough to truly heal past pain/trauma or reduce increasing distress. You deserve more than having a paid professional give you advice that a friend could have given you at Starbucks.
In my therapy approach I give practical steps, coping skills, and strategies to help you manage overwhelming emotions beyond the counseling room. My intent is to help you gain control over your life rather than be tossed and turned by your feelings which is incredibly helpful when dealing with anxiety and panic attacks. You will feel equipped to handle future moments of crisis with specific techniques.
I also utilize Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy to help you reach relief from intrusive thoughts or memories. EMDR is a widely researched and evidenced-based technique to treat trauma and PTSD symptoms. It has been highly effective to change and gain relief in areas that has been a stuck point for people.
Along with EMDR therapy, I use interactive and creative means (music, art, sand tray, etc.) in my counseling. I believe many people learn, retain, and gain more through hands on approach than just talk-therapy. This style of therapy can be much more effective for teens/children who benefit from concrete and artistic methods.
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing)
If you noticed a haunting memory or experience that replays constantly, effects your relationships, or prevents you from living happily then EMDR is the treatment for you. There is possibility to be freed from your past pain or trauma!
I am a certified in EMDR therapist. A certified EMDR therapist entails additional specialty training, supervision, and ongoing education while trained EMDR counselors may have only undergone a minimum 3-day intensive training.
“What is EMDR you might ask?”
It is a therapy technique used to help people heal from past disturbing events or trauma. A disturbing event(s) can be any experience that made an emotionally negative impact on your life such as a nasty break up/divorce, bullying or harassment, public speaking catastrophes, etc.
If you are struggling to move past an issue, EMDR is great to help immediately reduce and eventually neutralize the past pain so you can move forward with your life.
You might notice the past becoming a roadblock if all the reasoning in the world somehow does not convince you from feeling hurt or anxious even though it is not logical. EMDR works to bring together truth in your head, statements such as “it’s not my fault” or “it’s not a big deal”, to truth in your heart where you believe and feel it is real too.
If you would like to know more about EMDR and to see if it is the best fit for you then visit here.
Education & Experience
I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and have been practicing for the past 6 years. I completed my Master’s degree in Counselor Education at the University of Central Florida, which is rated as one of the top 10 programs in the nation by US News and World Report in 2019.
I worked for 3 years as a Senior Youth Counselor in Orange and Seminole County Public Schools. I serviced teens dealing with suicidal thoughts, panic attacks, parental divorce/separation, peer to peer issues, anger management, etc.
In addition, I was an adjunct professor and advisor at the University of Central Florida. I helped college students and post-graduates clarify career paths or learn about/choose alternative options never considered. I have a heart to guide those who feel lost and confused about their life stage and who want to pursue other options.
Get to Know Colleen
I pursued this field after witnessing a close friend endure paralyzing fear, dread, and hopelessness in a time of hardship. I wanted to know and do more in order to truly help those who are suffering. Therefore, this one experience as well as several others pushed my to pursue my counseling degree at the University of Central Florida as a way be better equipped to help others.
I was born and raised in South Florida. Growing up, I struggled to discover and establish my own cultural identity as a child of immigrants raised in the United States. Years later as an adult, I began an interracial relationship, and faced internal and external difficulties that came with that decision. From my life experiences, being different and never quite belonging is a familiar territory for me. But, I want to help others find peace in embracing their true selves as I have found within myself.
On my spare time, I enjoy playing board games with my friends, cycling and traveling with my family, and discovering new restaurants in Central Florida. In addition, I serve as an active member at my church’s womens ministry team and am continuously learning through the jungles of motherhood.
Schedule today at 407-622-1770 for a complimentary 15- minute phone consult or book online here for your first appointment.
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