About Me

Monica Burton, Therapist

Monica is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), practicing in St. Petersburg Florida. She has been a practicing clinician since 2003. She received her Bachelors Degree from Eckerd College and her Masters Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Nova Southeastern University. She is a clinical member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, has served as the President and currently serves as the Past President of the Florida Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.

License # MT-2150

You don’t have to do it alone!  As a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist I can help empower you to create the change you desire.

Over 10 Years of Experience

I have been a marriage and family therapist for over 10 years.  I have extensive training in systemic couples and family therapy. I am passionate about being a marriage and family therapist because we take a non-judgmental, holistic look at the struggles that are happening in your life and focus on finding your own strengths to achieve the change you seek. One of the many benefits of seeing a couples/family therapist is that I look at the interactional patterns that are occurring in your life and advocate for the different perspectives  that take place in relationships.  As a therapist I have seen people empower themselves, their partners and their families by discussing the change they desire, and envisioning the future filled with hope.  As your therapist my goal is to help you make that change, and start getting fulfillment from your life and your relationships.  

~Monica Burton~

Styles of Therapy

What Is Family Therapy?
Family Therapy sets itself apart from other types of therapy or counseling because of its systemic approach.  We believe that you cannot just treat the person; instead we address the relationships involved and find answers. Whether the issue is your relationship with yourself, your partner, or your family a systemic approach addresses the issues from many different points of view.  This does not mean you have to bring your whole family in for family counseling.  The philosophy of treating the system can be applied to any situation be it Individual Counseling, Couples Counseling or Family Counseling.  

The AAMFT describes family therapy as:
A family’s patterns of behavior influences the individual and therefore may need to be a part of the treatment plan. In marriage and family therapy, the unit of treatment isn’t just the person – even if only a single person is interviewed – it is the set of relationships in which the person is imbedded. 
What is your approach to therapy?
My primary training is in systemic marriage and family therapy.  I also have training in solution focused therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.  A systemic approach emphasizes factors such as relationships and communication patterns rather than traits or symptoms. Solution focused therapy is a technique that keeps the focus on the results you want to achieve.  Solution focused therapy emphasizes the present and the future, and helps you use your strengths and resources to create the change you desire.  Cognitive behavioral therapy emphasizes the important role of thinking in how we feel and what we do.   When you come in for a therapy session I will tailor a custom treatment plan that works for you.  In each therapy session whether it’s individual, couples, family or group you can expect a trained, competent therapist. 
What should I expect from an Individual Counseling Session?
An individual counseling session (also known as psychotherapy) is set up to be one person and the therapist. In this session we will discuss your reason(s) for seeking counseling and treatment goals.  In therapy we will examen many aspects of your life in an effort to improve the satisfaction of your life and your relationships.  The benefit of systemic therapy in an individual counseling session is that I will also consider and look at interactional patterns that are happening in your life as opposed to just focusing on problem talk. We will look at solutions to the problem and work towards healthy inner and outer relationships.  To learn more about how Individual Counseling (Therapy) can benefit you visit the Individual Therapy page here.
What should I expect from a Couples Counseling (Marriage Counseling) Session?
Marriage or couples counseling is designed to be the couple and the therapist.  In session we will discuss what brought the couple to counseling and how I can be helpful.  Couples therapy emphasizes effective communication and the power of listening.  Couples are encouraged not to compete with each other, but to identify common life goals while learning to share responsibilites.  I will not take sides, nor will I help you “keep score” against your partner.  We will create treatment goals and work with both parties involved in the relationship.  Also in couples therapy there may be specifically designed exercises or books for the couple to read or use for the couple. To learn more about how Couples Counseling can benefit you visit the Couples Counseling page here.
What should I expect from a Family Counseling Session?
A family therapy session involves the family and the therapist.  This can be any number of family members, and can encompass any imaginable topic.  Family therapy is designed to hear everyone’s perspective of the issues and hopes or goals for therapy.  The intention is to put the emphasis on having all family members take ownership of identifying the problems the family is facing and working toward a solution.  The family therapist is there to look at the interactional patterns, think about the different relationships involved and to navigate all the voices in the therapy session. To learn more about how Family Therapy can benefit you visit the Family Therapy page here.
What should I expect from a Group Therapy Session?
Group therapy is set up to have people come together to discuss a specific topic.  Typically groups will have anywhere from 4 to 12 people. The groups that I run are focused on a specific topic or problem area, and your fellow group members will all be going through similar experiences.  The purpose of group therapy is to show you that you are not alone.  You can learn from the experiences of others, even though they may be very different from your own.  As the therapist I will provide a safe environment and moderate the group to keep the discussion flowing.  We will also set up rules/boundaries for the group and issues will be treated in a group dynamic as opposed to individual therapy.  Group can be beneficial for some people who learn well from their peers or group can provide a supportive network while you work on healing.
 
If you have any additional questions please visit the FAQ page, or call Monica at 727-565-2551

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