A SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING PSYCHIATRIC SERVICE ANIMALS: "Emotional Support Animals" are NOT protected under the ADA, though I occasionally receive requests for approval for ownership of an "emotional support animal".  First, I do not "approve" animals as I am not an animal expert, but rather identify that someone might benefit from the assistance of a "psychiatric service animal".  


While most people find benefit in owning a pet or an emotional support animal, this owner/animal relationship is different from a psychiatric service animal,  which requires a mental health diagnosis for which a person would be also be actively engaged in therapeutic management of their ongoing mental health symptoms.  The requirements are designed to protect the rights of those who depend on these animals for their health and well-being, and I take great care in making sure that I help protect this important resource for the benefit of those who really need it.  I will not  write a letter if I can't personally and professionally attest to someone's use of therapeutic skills and healthy structures in managing their symptoms and can't thoughtfully identify the specific need the use of an animal might provide in relation to their symptoms.  The cost of the animal and the training of the animal is generally at the owner's expense (though a service animal organization might provide you with avenues for financial assistance).  There are specific organizations that train and work with the animals and clients before the animals are certified and turned over to their owners for their specific situation. I do not recommend specific organizations, as, again, I am not an expert in the area of service animals but can assist you in developing some resources to explore.  


The ADA does offer specific information regarding Psychiatric Service Animals,  and requires that an individual  has an ongoing psychiatric diagnosis (such as PTSD, Recurrent Major Depression, or Generalized Anxiety Disorder), and that their animal is professionally trained to provide a specific service related to that diagnosis which positively impacts their owner's  daily functioning.  For more information, the US government provides information regarding this issue and the  ADA. 



"A seed planted in the ground...

...."does not feel its lack of roots, stem, and petals to be a weakness or less than. It just sees an opportunity to grow and then does..."   Michael Stevenson




 Resources:

If you have a life-threatening emergency that requires medical services, please call 9-1-1.


If you or someone you know is suicidal or in serious emotional distress, contact the 9-8-8 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. Trained crisis workers are available to talk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Your confidential and toll-free call goes to the nearest crisis center in the Lifeline national network. These centers provide crisis counseling and mental health referrals.

Call or text 988 or chat using this link to the website that offers this service.  

Other therapists, who work with me at my address, but not under the name of Great Plains Counseling:

Vicki Holoubeck, LIMHP:  402.880.9453                                                Christina Broekemeier, LIMHP: 402.350.1968                 

Ida-Marie Hebrank, LIMHP, LCSW, LADAC: 402.541.9698                 Vickie DeBuhr, LMHP: 402.660.6400                 

Molly Petersen, APRN, Kim Camp-Grimit, APRN:   (402) 281-9304  (med management/psychiatric nurse practitioners)        


It is important that you find the right fit for you, BOTH in a therapist's area of expertise as well as in a therapy style that suits you best: 


Do you benefit most when you have structure or flexibility? 

How about a "matter-of-fact" style or a softer approach?  

Is someone that uses humor important or would that put you off, currently?

In reaching your goals for therapy, is having "homework" to reflect on thoughts, feelings, and habits, or is it more important right now to just process your thoughts and feelings in the session? 

Is is more important to feel emotionally safe or challenged?  


Most therapists do a combination of things that are flexible to a client's specific needs and try to assess these in early sessions, so it is important that you collaborate with them about the methods that would be most helpful to you in that moment.  Generally speaking, it is a therapist's goal to help you find healthy and secure options in recognizing and responding to your emotions and expressing them to others in a healthy, safe, and effective manner, for both you and for others that are in relationships with you. 


If a collaborative approach is helpful in your situation,  a consent to release information must be signed by you in order for us to

communicate with another professional about you. 


While I cannot offer endorsement, as I do not personally know all of the therapists in the community, some other providers in Bellevue are:  Remedy Health, AM Counseling, Mental Health Clinicians of Bellevue, and Alegent Psychiatric of Bellevue. Their websites will provide you with their contact information.