Let’s talk about culture & race in America

I’m sure you all heard the news that Spokane NAACP President Rachel Dolezal has stepped down from her position because a journalist discovered that she has white parents.  Dolezal had been portraying herself as black, and even went so far as to post pictures of herself with black people and claiming that they were her family.  Probably for most people hearing about this case, the immediately thought is to condemn her as a fraud, but is that really what happened? 

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The MYOB Conference: What it is & why you should go

Last year I got to be in the audience for an exciting new conference, a free virtual conference just for therapists in private practice.  Let me just say that I loved it then and I was looking forward to seeing it again this year, and so should you.  Because I am a huge believer in therapists helping each other out, and especially helping each other to succeed in private practice, I think that you all should be attending this conference

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Should therapists have unions?

Should community mental health workers have unions?  What about counselors in private practice?  The question of therapists and unions is one that has been being asked a lot lately.  I mentioned in a previous blog post that counselors that are not in private practice make an average salary of just $35,000/year in Boston.  This pay typically doesn’t come with any benefits either.  Therapists often don’t get health insurance, paid-time-off, sick days, or over-time.  And given that the average age of

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The ACA conference: What it’s like & why you should go

I’ve noticed that there aren’t too many reviews of the ACA Conference out there.  Pretty much everything you find on the web comes directly from the ACA itself and probably most people would like to hear about it from another counselor.  Well, you’re in luck!  Just keep in mind that this review is in regards to the 2015 conference that took place in Orlando.  I can’t speak for past or future conferences. For me, the big draw was the continuing

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Wondering if you should go to the ACA conference?

It’s been a historic winter here in Boston.  We’ve had two Top 10 snow storms in the last ten days.  There is 5 feet of snow on the ground and no chance of anything melting within the next two weeks.  Something that’s helping me get through it is reminding myself that next month I’ll be at the ACA conference in Orlando and by the time I get back it should be Spring in Boston. Something I’ve been hearing from a

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Is modern life causing mental illness?

We often think of all the good things that come with modern life: The internet, the ability to connect with anyone anywhere in the world almost instantly, the ease and safety of travel, modern medicine, and modern conveniences.  But is it possible that all of these innovations, all of these inventions, aren’t as good for us as we think they are?  Is it possible that all these things that we think of as being “good” are really “bad” for us? 

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Do you have what it takes to be a mental health therapist?

I get calls all the time from would-be counselors and therapists.  They want to become a therapist but they’re just not sure.  They’re wondering if they would truly enjoy it and if they have what it takes to be successful.  Ordinarily if someone was considering whether or not to join the profession the advice is to “try it out” or shadow someone in the field.  The problem is, you can’t really do that in mental health.  The field is so

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Why I’m still taking insurance

If you read the other blogs out there that are geared towards therapists, then you know that a major theme is that we therapists should stop taking insurance.  It would certainly make my life easier if I did this:  No more battling with the insurance when they randomly decide to deny a claim.  I could drastically cut down my paperwork and use that time for other things.  I could name my own fees instead of having the insurance companies decide

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Thank you!

Lately I’ve been getting a lot of emails from people thanking me for writing these blog posts.  There’s been a great variety of people: people who are established therapists, students, those thinking about joining a counselor training program, and those that are not associated with the profession at all.  It means so much to me knowing that these articles are appreciated.  Although I would love to thank you all individually, I don’t know who you are, so I decided to

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The most under-appreciated and under-paid profession

Every now and then my in-laws go on a rant about the cost of health care.  “The real problem is that these health care providers get paid sooo much money” they say.  They then turn to me and look at me like I’m part of the problem.  Without fail I say “I don’t know why you’re looking at me, I don’t think therapists get paid enough.  Are you saying that therapists should be paid even less?”  Usually at that point

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My name is Marina Williams and I am a licensed mental health counselor with a private practice in Jamaica Plain, MA. This website is my professional website devoted to my activities as a therapist. If you are interested in finding out more about my private practice, please visit my other website JPcounseling.com


Do you want to make an appointment for counseling or supervision? Interested in having me speak at your event? Have any questions or concerns? Feel free to contact me at 774-240-5550 or info@jpcounseling.com