Dr. Debo'rah Merritt


About Me

Congratulations on taking what might have been a very hard step, a step toward focusing on a healthier you. As a mental health provider I am passionate about helping clients become the best you possible, one step at a time. It will be important for you to find a great match and reading counselors profile summaries is your first step. It's important to find a counselor whose counseling theory matches your idea of what you want in a counselor. Below you will hear about the counseling theory I utilize and also about my counseling background to see if we are a good fit.

When working with Adolescents and Adults I utilize a combination of cognitive behavior therapy and existential therapy. WHAT?! Basically together we move toward the development and achievement of goals which focus on increased awareness of the self including your thoughts, emotions and actions and development of enhanced coping responses. These theories combined pay attention to how your current behavior, thinking, emotions and physical reactions were learned and how they are being maintained while discovering your view of the future, expectations of it and processing of those expectations to find meaning of one's own life and reaching your goals. This theory is a great match for most mental health diagnosis, every day stressors as well as for professionals or athletes wanting to move to the next level. It's definitely a great fit for those needing help handling the stress of this crazy 2020!

When working with children I focus on learned behavior and use CBT to help them find healthy coping strategies as well as to learn life skills. I work with parents to teach them how to parent in a way that sets clear expectations of behaviors with clear consequences. I help parents learn to parent like a video game using the same strategies that keep kids engaged and successful in the game to also have a health family dynamic. It's a lot less stress then yelling and grounding your kids all the time (which means you just grounded yourself! ). As a parent of a child on the spectrum, I also have specialized knowledge in treating Autism, ADHD, Learning Disabilities, IEPs and early childhood delays.

So a little about me... I got into counseling because over and over again strangers would tell me their life stories, pouring out the most heart wrenching stories right there in the store checkout line. Kids would automatically warm up to me at playgroups and when helping in the classroom. It became part of my normal life for individuals to seek solace within minutes of an informal hello so I decided to make it my profession. I take counseling seriously so didn't just stop with a Masters degree, I received a PhD because I wanted to ensure I had all the tools needed to assist anyone brave enough to seek out help. I was a military spouse for many years so understand all the struggles that come with that lifestyle. I am a mom so also empathize with all the challenges that come with that incredibly difficult and important job! I have been counseling for 20 years and am passionate about helping families and clients of all ages find positive mental health. I have worked with all ages from early childhood to those in the later stages of life. It's about meeting the client where they are, coming alongside them in their journey toward feeling healthy, being productive in their life work and loving themselves.


  • Stress, Anxiety
  • LGBT
  • Grief
  • Career difficulties
  • Coaching
Also experienced in:
Sleeping disorders , Parenting issues , Self esteem , Coping with life changes , Compassion fatigue , ADHD , Aging and Geriatric Issues , Autism and Asperger Syndrome , Cancer , Caregiver Issues and Stress , Read more...

Clinical approaches:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Existential Therapy, Mindfulness Therapy, Solution-Focused Therapy

Years of Experience: 18

Services Offered

  • Messaging

  • Live Chat

  • Phone

  • Video


LPC # 0013708 (Expires: 2021-08-31)


Written by M.A. on Jan 12, 2021 after counseling with Debo'rah for 2 months on issues concerning depression, stress, anxiety, family conflicts, trauma and abuse, and self esteem

She is the 5th therapist I’ve seen in 4 years, and she is the only one that truly has helped me start to reframe my thoughts and supports me through anything. I wish I could have all the people I know that are struggling go to Dr. Merritt

Written by K.O. on Nov 09, 2020 after counseling with Debo'rah for 2 weeks on issues concerning stress, anxiety, relationship issues, intimacy-related issues, and self esteem

Dr. Merritt is a thoughtful and very effective counselor. Definitely recommend her!