Meet Cathy

I am a Licensed Professional Counselor and play therapist living and practicing in Washington, DC.  After earning a Master’s of Education in Mental Health Counseling from George Washington University, I did post-graduate training at the Washington Baltimore Center for Psychoanalysis, and I’m currently still studying there. I have experience conducting psychotherapy groups with children, adolescents, and adults, including in a hospital setting, and individual psychotherapy as well. My play therapy expertise comes from working at the Lourie Center for Children’s Social and Emotional Wellness in Rockville, MD, as well as years of clinical supervision in psychoanalytic play therapy. I specialize in early childhood mental health and work with kids from infancy to young adulthood, specifically with families experiencing divorce, children who have suffered early trauma, and gender-variant children and teens. My work also extends to relationship therapy, family therapy, and individual adult therapy, stemming from an understanding of, and a fascination with, how families and individual minds grow and change.

I have specialized experience and training in the following:

  • Parent-child, attachment-based play therapy
  • Circle of Security Parenting Program (Registered Facilitator)
  • Mindfulness-based interventions for anxiety and depression
  • Psychoanalytic psychotherapy for children and teens
  • Group therapy for children and adults
  • Individual therapy for adults

Before I became a therapist, I was an academic librarian for many years, with a Master’s of Library and Information Science, and before that, I taught college writing while earning a Ph.D. in English and creative writing. Learning and thinking are really important to me, which is why I do lots of trainings, belong to consultation groups of like-minded clinicians, and seek consultation from respected practitioners on a regular basis. I was also a supervising clinician with the University of Texas at Austin’s Dell Medical School Psychiatry Residency program.


American Counseling Association
Association for Child Psychoanalysis
Austin Psychoanalytic
American Psychological Association–Division 9 and Section IX
Child Study Group, Center for Psychoanalytic Studies in Houston
Psychoanalytic Studies Program, Washington Center for Psychoanalysis
Washington School of Psychiatry
Infant Observation Seminars,  led by Nydia Lisman-Pieczanski, M.D.