Denise Jones, PhD, LPC, NCC, BCBA, LBA is a Teletherapist at MySpectrum Counseling & Coaching. With her numerous credentials, Denise is qualified to provide an array of services. Yet, she has chosen to practice outpatient therapy online at MySpectrum. Here, she gives us her “why”.

“Prior to working at MySpectrum Counseling & Coaching, I had the good fortune of practicing a wide variety of clinical specialties. Few of these specialty treatments were more different from the type of straight-forward therapy I am doing for MySpectrum than Applied Behavioral Analysis (usually referred to in the field as ABA therapy). To illustrate how different ABA is from the emotional process most people imagine when they hear the word “therapy,” I might point to the fact that ABA is sometimes called behavioral engineering. You see, ABA therapy is considered the gold-standard of treatment for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder or other developmental conditions, and it works through an empirical approach wherein data is gathered about the child, often in their home, and used to write a support plan with clearly defined goals. It’s highly effective and driven by data. This puts it in stark contrast with the dynamic and rapidly unfolding heuristics that get used in real-time during one-on-one therapy sessions.

So, I want to talk about some of the reasons that I decided to transition from ABA therapy and things like it over to more traditional therapy with MySpectrum. Now, one might think that the reason for this is in what I’ve already indicated: that traditional therapy can be an emotional process and that ABA therapy can be somewhat scientific in nature. One might think that it’s because ABA therapy could have a clinician showing up in the homes of her clients and that traditional teletherapy could be conducted, at least in theory, completely from her home. One might also think that I preferred to work with populations in addition to those diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. While all of these distinctions may partially be true, the real reason is this: I felt that something was missing in my work doing ABA therapy with regards to the family unit. I saw a high rate of mental health need in the families that I served, and missed providing the foundational level of support to them that would help them pursue their hopes and dreams, and understand where they can make improvements in their lives so that they can reach their full potential. That was truly different than collecting data and writing support plans. Traditional therapy is just a different way of supporting individuals and being able to help them meet their goals.

As for why I chose to work for MySpectrum: I appreciated their ethos, and the idea that there is an entire spectrum of individuals that we serve. I appreciate being able to help people no matter where they are. Of course, I can still work with individuals on the Autism Spectrum, but now I can help individuals on many other different spectrums as well. I think it could be the case that other practices segment the people they serve too specifically, and this can exclude certain clients. At MySpectrum, I know that I will be able to help clients with all manner of presenting needs, as is consistent with the mission.”

If you would like to schedule an appointment with Denise for yourself or a loved one, please give us a call: 804-924-2236. Denise’s bio can also be found here.