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Counseling & Mental Health reviews in Bogart

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    Beyond Talk Therapy
    I started working with Damaris Drewry of Beyond Talk Therapy a few weeks ago, with the hopes of resolving my sleep apnea, which according to Damaris Drewry resulted from trauma. She'd claimed that she'd helped over 100 people resolve sleep apnea, and I felt like working with her would be my easiest and least expensive option. I signed up for a ���package��� of 4 sessions, with daily support ($1299, broken up into 3 payments). She told me that with the package, I would get the email and phone support I need, while working on resolving trauma, so that I wouldn't have ���another disappointment���. During our second session, Damaris Drewry started getting angry and agitated with me. She said that I wasn't following through on my homework, which was to listen to the sessions at least once, and to email her every day, letting her know how I slept and how I was feeling. I'd emailed her every day, and listened to the session, so I was really confused... When I reminded her that I did do everything she's asked, she said that my emails were disjointed, and that I was not responding to her emails. This was also clearly not true. I'd been sharing how I was doing and how I was feeling, and she was complaining about the content of my emails? It seemed like she was very annoyed and irritated with me, and was looking for something to complain about. When I asked her to clarify, she did not. Instead, she changed the subject, and asked me to take our session time to find a particular email from her, with particular content. I was unable to find it (even later, after the session), and she asked me to take yet more session time to search for a questionnaire that I'd returned to her about a week prior, and to read every item I'd answered yes to. Later in the session, I took a quick bathroom break, when it seemed like we were at a good stopping point. When I came back, Damaris Drewry was overtly angry. She ignored me for at least a full minute. When I said ���I'm ready,��� she was overtly irritated, and said she'd lost her train of though, her flow, etc. and had no idea where we were, or what we were talking about. It took a long time to get back on track. Again, I was confused and upset. When I thought we'd finally moved on with the session, about 20 minutes later, it was clear she was still irritated with me. Without provocation, she got agitated again. She said, ���Do you not like the way I work? Or is there something about me that you don't like?��� She told me I was hard to work with and asked me if I was angry with her. She also said that I wasn't giving her feedback, and that I should correct her if she was misinterpreting something, which is also exactly what I had been doing. I told her the only thing I was uncomfortable with was the way she got angry and irritated with me earlier. I asked her again to clarify and elaborate about all her complaints and accusations, but she kept changing the subject. I know she was annoyed because I tend to resist and avoid diving into very traumatic memories. However, I was conscious of this and made sure to stay on track during this session. Damaris Drewry said that going to the bathroom and blowing my nose during the session were avoidance mechanisms. But I explained that not going to the bathroom when I have to go was a lot more distracting from the work, and that if I didn't blow my nose I wouldn't be able to breathe, which would also detract from the session. When I spoke with a therapist I used to work with, about this experience, she said that the avoidance was due to my fear of reliving the trauma and that a good therapist would have addressed the fear, instead of getting angry, irritated and accusatory. I really didn't feel good about what happened during this session, and after taking a day to just sit with it and see how I really feel about it, I emailed Damaris Drewry, telling her that I'm feeling puzzled and upset about what happened at the last session, and asked if we could talk about it, giving her some days and time windows I was available to talk. She did tell me that with the package, that we could talk on the phone if I wanted to. However, instead of agreeing to talk, she emailed and said that we need to have a session to clear this, and that ���it wasn't possible to have a talk���. I'd signed up to work on my trauma and sleep apnea, not to spend our time on being upset about her anger management issues. We only had 4-5 sessions, and so much to work on. I emailed, explaining how I was feeling and that I wasn't sure if I was comfortable confiding in her anymore, if she was going to continue getting so angry and irritated with me. It's hard enough for me to talk about my traumas, and I had more to tell her, but I really wasn't comfortable talking to someone who was getting so irritated and strangely accusatory with me. I felt like I needed to actually speak to her to get a sense of where she was at, because she seemed to be ignoring what I was telling her in my emails. Damaris Drewry didn't even respond to what I'd painstakingly and meticulously explained in my email - how I was feeling, why I didn't feel good about what happened, why I wasn't sure about confiding in her if she was acting this way, etc. I also told her that it was very hard for me to talk about a lot of the things we were working on, and to open up to anyone, and that her getting irritated with me made me feel like shutting down even more. In response, Damaris Drewry of Beyond Talk Therapy, requested that I don't go to the bathroom during the sessions and said that we would do shorter sessions. She also kept saying that I wasn't really upset with her, but that I was misdirecting my anger at my parents and that it was transference ("Transference describes a situation where the feelings, desires, and expectations of one person are redirected and applied to another person.") I've worked with other therapists, and still occasionally work with a local eft practitioner. If I had a tendency for transference, wouldn't this have happened with other therapists? If I hadn't already made 2 payments toward the ���package���, I might have walked away. But I had, and it was a lot of money for me to just walk away from, and I really had my hopes up that she would help me resolve my sleep apnea. I emailed her to let her know I'd be out of touch for a few days, while I would be out of town. By this point our email communications were a major source of stress instead of support, and I had too much going on in my life to deal with it, especially while out of town. In her reply she told me that the third payment is due tomorrow, and in the next sentence she offered me an ���out of the package��� and said that if I did opt out, no payment is due, and there would be no refund! So she was basically telling me she didn't want to work with me , she wasn't going to help me after all, that she was refusing to take any responsibility for her behavior, AND that she was going to keep my money! Yes, she didn't actually say she didn't want to work with me, but after everything she'd said and done previously, and now offering me an ���out���, made it pretty clear. Of course, at this point it was clear to me that I would no longer be working with Damaris Drewry. So now I'm out $866, AND I still have sleep apnea and other health issues and unresolved trauma. I feel like some very painful wounds were opened up and not resolved, and I feel like I'm shutting down even more than before. It's so hard for me to get started with a new therapist, to talk about my traumas, and now I feel like it will be even harder to trust someone new. I know that my health problems are related to my traumas, and that I cannot be happy and in control of my life if they're not resolved. I feel like this experience derails my healing even more. As Damaris Drewry knows, I have multiple health issues, and trying to resolve them holistically at the root cause. I don't have an unlimited budget, and working with alternative medicine practitioners is expensive and not covered by insurance. Taking a large sum of money from a person in this situation, and then behaving this way is particularly unacceptable. I listened to the recordings of our sessions and re-read our emails, to make sure I remembered what happened accurately, before writing this review. I have audios and emails that confirm everything in this review. I rely heavily on online reviews, and wish there were more therapist reviews online. Finding the right therapist is challenging, and working with the wrong one can be traumatic, get you way off track in your life and healing journey, and a waste a lot of time and money that could have been put to better use. I hope that this review will serve as a warning about Damaris Drewry of Beyond Talk Therapy, and help others avoid this type of experience.
    - E N.
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