Brenda Carlson

(MA, LMHC, NCC)

Your first week of counseling is free

About Me

I am a licensed mental health counselor in Florida with over 3 years work in community mental health and 10 years experience in private practice, including 8 years as a certified clinical trainer for other counselors. I work a great deal with adult survivors of childhood abuse, but also with those dealing with depression and anxiety. Additionally, I often assist couples dealing with relationship and communication issues and with the gay and lesbian community.
I completed my Masters Degree in Ohio at a dual enrollment program, which was partly at Ashland University and partly at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. I completed internships at both Cleveland Psychiatric Institute and Lutheran Medical Center of Cleveland, both of which are large teaching hospitals..
I believe the best counseling technique is the one that helps the person seeking help to feel better. To that end, I use a variety of cognitive techniques in my work. In other words, techniques that assist individuals who feel "stuck" to look at their situation from different angles and from that new perspective, work out new methods for resolution. No two problems are ever exactly the same, so I make it my personal objective to listen very carefully to each person and in a very open and non-judgmental way, try to understand what each situation feels like looking out through their eyes. I have experience with both relatively mild and very severe types of problems.
At this time, I do not yet have the new video chat feature set up due to hardware limitations. I anticipate this being resolved in the near future. I do offer phone sessions at specified times during regular office hours. This is usually between 10am-5pm Monday through Friday, Eastern Time..


Specialties

  • LGBT
  • Relationship
  • Trauma and abuse
  • Depression

I also have experience in Stress, anxiety, Addictions, Family, Grief, Sleeping, Parenting, Anger, Self esteem, Career, Bipolar

Years of Experience: 20

Licensing

LMHC #MH2142 (Expires: 2017-03-31)


Testimonials

Written by M.I on Dec 30, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 days on issues concerning depression, stress, anxiety, relationship, family, trauma and abuse, grief, intimacy-related, sleeping, self esteem, anger, and bipolar

Brenda is very attentive and responds quickly. She asks good questions and is sensitive and apt to everything said.

Written by K.R on Nov 27, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, lgbt, parenting, self esteem, anger, and career

Brenda helped me manage stress and reduce my panic attacks within the first week of seeing her. I am definitely continuing my sessions and look forward to improvement in other areas of my life as well.

Written by K.W on Nov 23, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 6 days

Brenda is a good counsellor. I am happy with her service and I will talk to her again.

Written by N.U on Nov 14, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning relationship, family, and self esteem

Brenda is accessible and I can feel comfortable talking to her. I have really enjoyed interacting with her, and I am sure that in time we will have very good results. I recommend.

Written by S.H on Nov 09, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 days on issues concerning depression, stress, anxiety, addictions, self esteem, and career

Dr. Carlson is a great counselor, she helped me a lot to get rid of my alcohol addiction and also guided me to the right path towards my personal life. She is very understanding and responsive.

Written by S.U on Oct 07, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 days on issues concerning depression, stress, anxiety, relationship, family, trauma and abuse, sleeping, self esteem, and career

Very knowledgable in her field. Counseling was objective and professional while helping me feel more at ease about the issues presented. I would recommend Brenda Carlson to anyone in need of a short or long term professional counselor.

Written by V.A on Sep 29, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks on issues concerning depression, stress, anxiety, relationship, family, grief, sleeping, parenting, self esteem, anger, and career

I find Brenda has really helped. Although we are still in the beginning I believe this is working very well so far.

Written by M.I on Sep 06, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 weeks on issues concerning depression, stress, anxiety, family, trauma and abuse, sleeping, and parenting

Very sensitve and thoughtful therapist. Extremely happy with how her counselling is helping me find a direction. Skilled at dealing with multilayered and complex issues. Definitely would recommend her.

Written by B.R on Jun 09, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 days on issues concerning stress, anxiety, lgbt, self esteem, career, and depression

Thanks to Brenda my relationship is no longer in trouble and my personal well being has improved.

Written by M.E on May 09, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 1 week on issues concerning stress, anxiety, family, trauma and abuse, self esteem, anger, career, bipolar, and depression

Brenda is an understanding, awesome counselor. When you can't make sense of something, talk to her about it and she will help you.

Written by S.A on Apr 27, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 6 days on issues concerning stress, anxiety, addictions, relationship, trauma and abuse, eating, and depression

Brenda is a very compassionate, caring, insightful and well versed counselor. She is very very responsive and also proactive to reach out to you. She provides you the space you need but also lets you know that she is there to help. She is reassuring and makes observations but then stops to also get your feedback before further elaborating which I liked as it can be challenging for a counselor to get a sense of who you are when there is little body language or voice interaction to go on. I feel she has dealt with many different areas so is well versed to guide in many situations.

I would highly recommend Brenda!!

Written by J.O on Apr 11, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 8 months

I got great help with some issues I have been having. She is very knowledgeable and made me feel a lot more confident about the changes I am making in my life.

Written by J.A on Apr 04, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning stress, anxiety, lgbt, trauma and abuse, sleeping, self esteem, anger, bipolar, and depression

Brenda is very helpful and good at what she does.

Written by S.T on Mar 30, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 months on issues concerning relationship, family, intimacy-related, sleeping, self esteem, and anger

Brenda has been helpful in guiding me on the path that i=I want to be on to be my best self.

Written by C.G on Mar 16, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 months on issues concerning relationship, family, and intimacy-related

Brenda has been great at helping to navigate through life stressors. She has great insight and provides thoughts and ideas to think about pertaining to each issue. She is very experienced in helping to figure out relationships. Highly recommended. Glad I was matched with Brenda. A huge plus is how quickly she responds - always within the same day which is great for me. It has been great working with Brenda.

Written by A.N on Mar 11, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 3 months on issues concerning addictions, and relationship

I loved her responsiveness and professionalism and how every time I felt wary and that I was sharing too much, she encouraged me and said it was okay and that really comforted me. She is really great!! Definitely would recommend her!!

Written by O.R on Mar 03, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, trauma and abuse, grief, intimacy-related, self esteem, anger, bipolar, and depression

Brenda has helped me with everything I throw at her. All of her advice is amazing and warranted, and I'm glad I got paired with her as my counselor!

Written by J.O on Feb 26, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 4 months

Brenda has been an amazing help. I got so much insight from her.

Written by G.I on Feb 08, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 8 months on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, self esteem, and depression

Brenda is readily available. I receive a response promptly. She will reach out and check in on me showing concern. She has helped me think deeper and is helping me resolve some issues. She is not judgmental at all and very understanding of my situation.

Written by R.A on Jan 30, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 3 months on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, grief, self esteem, and depression

Brenda was extremely helpful in assisting me in identifying some issues which had brought me to her services. She immediately made me feel comfortable in providing information without reservation. She had great insight and provided exceptionally useful resources for me to utilize in my progress. Highly recommend Brenda!

Written by A.N on Jan 25, 2016 after counseling with Brenda for 2 months

Brenda has been absolutely amazing! I really enjoy talking with her. Her responses are very professional, very friendly and I'm so glad I came across this site and that Brenda was assigned to work with me. This has been a very worthwhile experience and I am 100% satisfied with the progress that is being made.

Written by K.A on Dec 29, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 5 days on issues concerning stress, anxiety, family, and depression

Brenda provided me with a unbiased and fresh perspective on the problem I was dealing with, whilst also being beautifully empathetic which came through in our messages. In the short time I was working with her I got exactly what I needed, and now I have some new strategies in my toolbox that are already proving to be helpful. Would thoroughly recommend, thank you Brenda!

Written by K.A on Dec 15, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, sleeping, and depression

Brenda is incredibly prompt and thoughtful in her responses. She is never judgmental and asks the right questions to help you explore your own thoughts. After trying a few different counselors on BetterHelp, I really have to recommend Brenda to those who want gentle, clear guidance.

Written by C.A on Dec 09, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, self esteem, career, and depression

Brenda has been such a a wonderful, supportive counselor. She is very understanding and encouraging, and gives great insights with clear explanations. She is exactly the type of support I needed during a difficult and confusing time. Many thanks!

Written by K.I on Oct 24, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, addictions, relationship, family, trauma and abuse, grief, intimacy-related, self esteem, and depression

Great counselor in the short time we've been talking! She answers back so quickly no matter what time of day it is. Her responses are thorough and easy to understand. A good balance of understanding what I'm going through and challenging me to become better. Highly recommend.

Written by M.O on Oct 23, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 5 months on issues concerning stress, anxiety, lgbt, relationship, self esteem, career, and depression

Very friendly cordial helpful.

Written by M.A on Sep 22, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month

Brenda has been very helpful sorting through depression and anxiety surrounding my divorce. I appreciate her honest assessments and ability to sift through the frustration that I've been conveying, getting to the real heart of the problem.

Written by J.E on Sep 09, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month

Brenda has given me sound advice during this difficult time that I am going through with an abusive, alcoholic husband. She has been diligent in following up with me and checking in with me which is very reassuring. I appreciate her professional manner and her friendliness that makes me totally comfortable in sharing my issues with her. She asks appropriate questions to get a better understanding of my situation. I am so glad that I was matched with Brenda!

Written by K.A on Sep 07, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, grief, self esteem, and depression

Brenda has helped me get through my anxiety and depression following a breakup and though I need to take it a little at a time, I feel because of her coaching, I am slowly getting better and realizing my true worth as a person. She is very good at her job!

Written by A.L on Sep 06, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning stress, anxiety, addictions, relationship, family, trauma and abuse, grief, intimacy-related, eating, sleeping, self esteem, career, and depression

Very good and patient. Insightful. Responds quickly. Gives homework. Checks in on me if I haven't messaged in a while. Best counselor I've ever had went three four in real life and three online before I got Brenda.

Written by K.E on Aug 15, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks

I've hit a little emotional rough patch in my life and Brenda had been a tremendous help. She is thoughtful, responsive and has helped me reframe my thinking on things without being too prescriptive. I'm surprised how comfortable I feel being candid and I know that is due to her professionalism and guidance.

Written by A.L on Aug 12, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 12 months on issues concerning and lgbt

I worked with Brenda on LGBT issues that are coming up with me as I end my marriage. I found Brenda to be knowledgeable, caring, insightful and challenging. If you're ready to work on your issues, you will do well with Brenda as a guide.

Written by L.A on Aug 11, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 15 months on issues concerning stress, anxiety, lgbt, relationship, intimacy-related, self esteem, and depression

Brenda is great. She usually responds within an hour and has insightful things to say. I wasn't sure how well someone would be able to get to know me in an online format like this, but I really feel that she has a good sense of me, my values, my issues, and my needs. She has definitely been helpful to me and I would recommend her highly. Her recommendations to me have been really great in helping me in figuring out some of the possible reasons behind my behaviors and how to begin dealing with those situations. I couldn't recommend her more, and I'm glad we met (inasmuch as we have). :)

Written by L.O on Aug 04, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning stress, anxiety, family, self esteem, career, and depression

I felt very comfortable with Brenda from the very beginning. She was spot on with some of the issues I needed to deal with. She was always available and would also check back in if she didn't hear from me for awhile. She is definitely an asset to Better Help - you are in good hands if you get matched with Brenda!

Written by A.M on Jul 29, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 2 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, anger, and depression

Brenda was so helpful and understanding. It was really great to be able to have someone to speak about my relationship. She provided me quite a few tools and recommendations which have tremendously helped my situation. I couldn't of asked for a better counselor!

Written by M.A on Jul 23, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, family, eating, self esteem, career, and depression

Brenda is an awesome combination of kind/empathetic and highly trained/bravely honest. She's a great guide and she doesn't mind asking the hard questions - but she asks them with a caring and positive attitude. I'm so glad that I'm working with her.

Written by C.A on Jun 23, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks

Betterhelp is in fact better help. Quick, attentive, accommodating, kind, understanding; They are everything I am looking for. I find it mobile friendly (Android), and my counselor Brenda is worth every cent. I am low income, and the better support staff were very helpful in making it possible for me to continue sessions. (Thank-you!)
I struggled with my own pride in asking for help for years, but now, I feel like why did I never ask sooner. The anonymity of contacting someone not in my community, and not face to face, has been very opening and freeing to me. I feel it is private, and free of stigma. I don't have to tell my family or friends, unless I want to. Spectacular. I recommend this service.

Written by J.A on Jun 19, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 2 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, lgbt, family, trauma and abuse, self esteem, and depression

Brenda is amazing she is professional, helpful, responds very quickly with understanding and empathy, and always has good advice.

Written by S.U on Jun 10, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month

Awesome therapist. Has helped me tremendously and I plan to continue sessions with her

Written by S.H on May 18, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 1 month on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship, family, trauma and abuse, intimacy-related, self esteem, career, and depression

Brenda has helped me see things I wouldn't have if I hadn't been honest with her about my feelings, thoughts and fears. She has been patient, understanding and encouraging in the time she has been my counselor. I would recommend her as a counselor.

Written by D.O on May 14, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 19 months

Brenda has been an amazing influence at a critical time in my life. For me, everything about my life changed overnight, and that's not an exaggeration. Though the change was very positive, it left me without a direction and having no real idea who I am and what makes me tick. I was very lost and my positive life change was quickly becoming a source of major stress.
Brenda was the light in the fog that I needed. She offered me insight and practical answers for my questions. She was never heavy-handed, nor did she ever focus on details of the I considered unimportant. She seemed to recognize what I needed from our time together, and she delivered!
When my life gets hectic and I forget to utilize the great tool that is Brenda, she never fails to message me after a week to see if I have anything I need to talk about. She provides a nice sense of consistency in my otherwise crazy life.
After the free trial end, it was a real no-brainer to keep the service. At $35 a week, I have practically perpetual access to a gifted counselor. Thank you, Brenda, for being part of this incredibly valuable service!

Written by M.A on May 12, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 19 months

Brenda is really great at building an almost instant connection. She listens and offers help in a way that is more subtle and not distant or over bearing. So far so good , and I'm glad she has the patience to hang in with me as well :-)

Written by K.R on May 08, 2015 after counseling with Brenda for 3 weeks

I've been working with Brenda for a few weeks now and she not only has wonderful insights and understanding but also provides effective tools to help sort through a challenge. I like that we are in the here and now, and she is helping me to understand some dynamics in my life that I know are difficult but she gives me clarity on them. She has been very helpful!