Lily Vose-O’Neal, M.S.

Approach to Therapy

I love being a therapist. I consider it a great privilege and honor to be invited into people’s lives in times of struggle and vulnerability. When I work with clients my hope is that they will leave our sessions feeling respected, understood, validated, accepted, and with less distress and more hope. I use an integrated client-centered approach. I weave together Narrative Therapy, Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT), Motivational Interviewing, Attachment Theory, Mindfulness, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), psychoeducation, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). When working with adolescents with eating disorders I use a Family Based Treatment approach (FBT). I am an artist and I use my creative training to tailor the therapy experience to each client’s unique needs, fluidly shifting focus between emotions, thoughts, and actions or behaviors. I see all feelings as purposeful, providing information about needs. I consider most problems to be attempts at solutions that are not yielding the intended results. I work from a strengths-based perspective looking to amplify and build on what clients are already doing that works and to uncover yet-to-be-accessed abilities and solutions. It is easy to become trapped in a story about ourselves and our lives that keeps us bound to our problems and our problem identity. I collaborate with clients to explore and develop narratives that can serve to move them towards the lives they desire.

I believe connection and belonging are fundamental, physiologically-based human needs. I like to help individuals, couples, and families build more connected lives. I work with adolescents, young adults, and adults. Children can be seen in the context of family therapy. Clients in individual therapy are always invited to bring important people such as partners, parents, children, friends, roommates, or housemates into sessions either for support or to use the session to work on relationship repair.

I work with clients of all races, ethnicities, religions, socio-economic statuses, sexual orientations, gender identities, body sizes, and abilities. I take a stand against prejudice and the oppression of members of marginalized groups.

Education and Work Experience

I received a Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling from the University of Massachusetts-Boston. I also completed graduate coursework in Couples and Family Therapy and in Applied Behavior Analysis, as well as undergraduate coursework in child development. My clinical internship was at the eating disorder treatment center, Walden Behavioral Care, where I worked with adults and adolescents and their families. Clients struggled with eating disorders including Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Binge Eating Disorder. Prior to that, I worked at Bradley Hospital with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families. I am also trained as an Embodyoga®yoga teacher and can integrate guided relaxation, body awareness, and meditation into sessions to reduce stress, increase the ability to self soothe, and strengthen the inner witness to help clients be less carried away by negative thoughts and mood states.

I have completed trainings and workshops in Narrative Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Eating Disorders & Obesity (An Evolutionary Approach) with Dr. Shan Guisinger, and The Neurosychotherapist Institute’s Core Principles of Neuroscience. I completed Embodyoga® 200 and 300 Hour Teacher Training programs at Yoga Center Amherst where I also taught yoga and was an assistant teacher trainer.I am currently working towards certification in Emotion Focused Therapy for Couples.

Issues and Concerns I work with:

  • Existential– Wrestling with issues about mortality, freedom, responsibility, injustice, or searches for meaning
  • Habit Change– Figuring out how to make small changes that lead to big improvements in quality of life
  • Transitions– Beginning college, a new career, parenthood, marriage, divorce, loss, children leaving home, retirement
  • Couple’s Issues – Chronic conflict, living separate lives, loss of passion, persistent disagreements about money, in-laws, sex, work, parenting, exploring whether to stay together or separate, when divorcing how to have the best divorce possible, reconciling after affairs
  • Grief & Loss – Loss of loved ones, relationships, pets, roles, identities, abilities
  • Complex Decisions –Examining the various ways a situation might unfold, the possible risks and rewards, forecasting what is most likely and what outcome you would be most comfortable with
  • AmbivalenceAbout Change– Exploring options when you want to change andyou don’t want to change, or when someone else wants you to change and you don’t want to change
  • Academic Issues –Study habits, procrastination, adjusting to the demands of college
  • Eating Disorders– Addressed through a framework that synthesizes biological, social/cultural, and psychological factors: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge Eating Disorder, Orthorexia, disordered eating, compulsive exercise, chronic dieting, chronic body dissatisfaction, building resilience to the prejudice directed towards people at the higher end of the weight spectrum, non-dieting approaches to wellness
  • Emotional Dysregulation– Feeling overcome by and out of control of painful emotions or experiencing emotional overcontrol where you have low access to emotions
  • Effects of Injustice & Oppression– Working with how we are influenced by larger systems, depersonalizing internalized cultural stigma, contextualizing problems within the larger web of family, society, and culture
  • Shame & Self-criticism– Developing a more fair, kind, and supportive inner dialogue
  • Artists & Creative Professional Concerns– Resolving creative blocks, balancing your art with other needs, strategizing how to “make it work” financially, designing combinations of day jobs & creative work if needed
  • LBGTQ Concerns – Positive identity development, lack of acceptance of sexual orientation or gender identity from family and loved ones, building resilience to heterosexism, homophobia, and transphobia
  • Anxiety – Excessive worrying about events, activities, or situations that feels out of proportion and interferes with your everyday life, always picturing the worst occurring, muscle tension, feeling restless, on edge, or keyed up, feeling irritable, having difficulty concentrating or finding your mind going blank, fatiguing easily, restlessness, difficulty getting a good night of sleep
  • Depression – Experiencing a persistent low mood where you feel sad, empty or hopeless, loss of pleasure in things you used to enjoy, sleeping too much or too little, intense guilt or feelings of worthlessness, difficulty with fatigue and concentration, thoughts of death

 

To Clients with Eating Disorders and Their Families

I use a Family Based Treatment (FBT) informed approach when working with adolescents with eating disorders or disordered eating. I see the whole family and empower parents to support their child to recover. FBT is also sometimes referred to as the Maudsley Method. For adult clients with eating disorders I also emphasize developing your support system and endeavor to help clients tolerate the distress that can be a part of the recovery process. My preference is always to work as part of your team of providers. I can also help you build your team. I believe eating disorders are biopsychosocial conditions with physiological underpinnings in human adaptations to survive famine. Having an eating disorder can be frightening, isolating, and produce tremendous shame. For some it can be bewildering and frustrating to have your loved ones express concerns you don’t share. Watching a loved one struggle with an eating disorder can leave you demoralized, confused, and afraid. I take a non-blaming non-shaming stance toward clients and families. I meet clients where they are and help them to make sense of the experience, to access support, to grieve what they have lost to the illness, and to chart a course back to wellness. Meal support and meal coaching can be incorporated into treatment.

I am a body positive therapist who respects body diversity and supports clients to nurture their health independent of weight or size. I help clients move toward listening to body cues to nourish their bodies with enjoyable foods and pleasurable movement. For clients who are at a body weight lower than where their body would be most comfortable and safe I support them in the renourishment process alongside their medical providers and dietician. I also work with clients to explore fears and obstacles to the recovery process.

Practicalities

  • Office Hours: Daytime, afternoon, and evening hours available.

 

  • Location: East Coast Mental Wellness’ offices are handicapped accessible and located on the Eastside of Providence. We are on the third floor of the historic 1 Richmond Square building with beautiful views of the Seekonk River, Witherby Park, and the wooded Waterman Street Dog Park. Our offices are within walking distance of Brown and RISD.

 

  • Insurance & Fees: Fifty-minute sessions $120. Seventy-five minute sessions $180. Sliding scale available. Some insurances taken. Receipts for out-of-network reimbursement through your insurance company provided upon request.

 

  • Contact: Please feel free to contact me to schedule a brief telephone consultation to discuss your needs, ask further questions and see if we’re a good fit.

Email:  lily@eastcoastmentalwellness.com  Telephone: (401) 227-0372 x 513

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