I have always seemed to be in a helping position. Before graduating high school I started work at a large veterinarian hospital/boarding kennel in Blue Bell, PA as an animal health technician and then the hospital administrator, where I stayed for over 15 years.
I decided to return to school to pursue a degree in psychology and have been in the mental health field since 1998, working for such organizations as Special Equestrians as a side aid volunteer assisting people with physical and/or mental health disabilities and Lenape Valley Foundation as both a house advisor and a Partial Hospital Program group therapist for people with severe and persistent mental illness. I also worked for Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia for their Narcotic Addict Rehabilitation Program where I was a counselor for people addicted to heroin. I recently worked for Catholic Charities in NJ in the roles of therapist for the Adolescent Intensive Outpatient Program working with kids diagnosed with substance abuse or dependence, as well as a clinical supervisor for the Comprehensive Family Treatment of Addictions Program (CFTA). This led to the position of Program Director for CFTA, the Therapeutic After-School Program (a therapeutic group for kids ages 8-12) and an In-home therapy/case management program, while also carrying a small direct-service caseload at my private practice. Finally, after taking the position of Service Area Director, with responsibility for 13 substance abuse, mental health and social service programs, I realized that I was moving further and further away from my original ambition of providing one to one service to clients. This realization led to my decision to get back into direct service.
The ability to provide a safe environment for people to share their feelings, thoughts, and experiences is essential to effective counseling. Studies have shown no one therapeutic modality utilized by therapists is superior to another; rather, clinicians themselves ultimately determine whether treatment will prove effective. It’s not about the model being used; it’s the relationship between the counselor and client. This principle guides my work, in that I strive to provide a client-centered, strength-based counseling setting to individuals, couples and adolescents for issues related to addiction, anxiety, career or relationships.
I look to my clients to be the experts of themselves, which encourages them to guide the therapy where it needs to go. What I offer is a space to gain insight in order for that insight to become the catalyst for change. I believe that once a person sees their truth, they have no choice but to accept that truth…though we often do our best not to. Each of us develops psychological schemas that teach us how to interact with people and the world. When we grow accustomed to a certain pattern of behavior, however, we look to repeat it, even after it’s outlived its usefulness. Addiction, for instance, is a maladaptive coping skill that worked at one time but does no longer.
With a background in English literature, I bring a decidedly post-modern perspective to my therapeutic approach. One of the concepts I utilize is Narrative Therapy, which encourages and compassionately challenges clients to be mindful of the story they’re telling to better utilize their strengths. This theory acknowledges the power of language, in that not only does the language we use reflect how we feel, it also affects how we feel. Therefore, the words we choose to use can help to manifest the changes we hope to bring about. The idea is to encourage the use of more positive words as opposed to negative words while telling our life story. I have found this approach to be remarkably effective in helping clients confront the challenges of their lives in order to bring about lasting and meaningful change. Other approaches and techniques I draw from include Humanistic Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness, Motivational Enhancement Therapy (with a strong working knowledge of Motivational Interviewing), Trauma Informed Therapy, and Systems Theory.
I find it satisfying to be part of helping people discover who they can be and realize that perhaps they’re more than who they thought they were. Ultimately, if each of us can achieve balance and make our own little corner of the world a little bit more satisfying and a little safer, we help to create a better reality for all of us.
Degrees and Credentials
Bachelors Degree in Psychology/English Literature from Arcadia University in Glenside PA
Masters Degree in Clinical/Counseling Psychology from La Salle University in Philadelphia PA
PA Board Licensed Professional Counselor
PA Board Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor
PA Board Certified Clinical Supervisor
PA Board Certificate of Competency in Problem Gambling
NJ Board Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor
NJ Board Licensed Professional Counselor
NJ Board Certified Clinical Supervisor
Member of the Psi Chi, Phi Theta Kappa, and Sigma Tau Delta National Honor Societies.
Modalities and techniques I draw from include Humanistic Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Enhancement Therapy (with a strong working knowledge of Motivational Interviewing), Trauma Informed Therapy, Mindfulness, and Systems Theory.
I have experience in dealing with:
Compulsive behaviors (such as sexual “addiction”)
- Stress, Anxiety
- Relationship issues
- Anger management
Family conflicts , Trauma and abuse , Grief , Intimacy-related issues , Parenting issues , Self esteem , Career difficulties , Depression , Codependency , Communication Problems , Drug and Alcohol Addiction , Fatherhood Issues , Forgiveness , Life Purpose , Men's Issues , Midlife Crisis Read more...
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Mindfulness Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Narrative Therapy
LPC #PC006310 (Expires: 2023-02-28)
LPC #37PC004087000 (Expires: 2022-11-30)
I am thankful I found William Dougherty on Better Help. In 1 year I am amazed at my ability to deal with stress and anxiety through difficult events, He is very quick to respond and video sessions work well in my schedule and give me great insight. He is very easy to talk to and understands my concerns. Better Help has helped me in so many ways. I highly recommend this platform and counselor William Dougherty.
I've been a client of William Dougherty's for a few years now. He's helped me improve in every area of my life. I'm so thankful for his advice and his support through the years. It's made such a positive impact on my life.
Very helpful counselor. I get some useful takeaway from nearly every encounter. I would recommend him.
William truly listened to me and helped guide me by asking thought-provoking questions. I never felt judged when interacting with him and I recommend him if you need a person who would listen to you and steer you toward positive thinking.
Very knowledgeable and professional
Great advice and knowledge in his subject area. Ability to allow me to think differently about my issues --- and provides a safe environment to express my thoughts and feelings
I want to say that William and I have only had one meeting. In that one meeting he was able to help me so much. He responds quickly to my journal entries and provides additional resources for my personal growth. Looking forward to working further with him!
He has been the biggest help of anyone I’ve ever talked to about this stuff, I’d trust him with my life, and recommend him to my closest of family and friends
I’m watching the close of the summer of 2020. Looking back on the pandemic, which, I am convinced, has not quit...as well as my personal time spent in the hospital and the absolute worst election of modern times...Mr Dougherty has been my only bright spot. And I’m counting on him to get me through what’s shaping up to be an
abysmal fall and a worse winter. Thank you, Will. Thank you.
I appreciate Bill as he is always trying to help me, even though I seem to reach out only when I struggle. He’s a good doctor and I am thankful for him. I would absolutely recommend him.
William is fantastic in his role. He almost always knows what to say and how to console me during the rough times. He has a great sense of humor which also enables sessions to be more comfortable and not feel so textbook in the sense of not feeling human. When something bad or good happens in my life, he’s proven to be the most reliable source to offer coping strategies or even just listening to me effectively and acknowledging what I’m going through.
I started video appointments with Bill in April and it has changed my life in so many ways. At first, I felt like I was just taking baby steps at trying to resolve some personal issues and trauma, but in hindsight only 4 months later, I realize I have actually made giant steps and progress toward living the life I want to live both mentally and physically. Even when I just want to reflect and discuss the good things going on, therapy is helping me to navigate and understand my emotions in healthier ways.
Working with William has truly been a blessing. It has been difficult to find a therapist who is open and respecting to my lifestyle and who constantly allows me a safe space to question my reality. Since working with William I have been able to see the changes in which I view my world and this empowerment has enabled to to find different ways of dealing with old issues. William is a wonderful counselor and I would strongly suggest working with him for those who want to expand their views on reality.
I have been having sessions with Dr william for over a year. I’m so happy that I have found him after trying with 3 different consulars! He helped me a lot and together we worked in so many areas of my life. Helped me to understand and address some of my traumas... however, I could over a day talking good about him. I just have to be thankful, grateful for his amazing job! I wish God gives him a lot of health for him to remain doing his awesome job! Thank you Dr Willian.
Great advice and gives worksheets that are immediately applicable.
I can’t say enough good things about this person. In a week I've learned more about myself, and ways to help me through difficult moments then I ever thought possible. He has help guide me to look at myself and the world around me in a new light! Even when I feel like I am rambling he can make sense of it and help me break things down so I can try to make sense of it. This has been a wonderful experience so far and I am excited to continue and see where this journey takes me.
Dr Dougherty has been helpful to me in better understanding mental health and addiction, especially the generational aspect of addiction. I have appreciated his knowledge and his courtesy.
William listens attentively and has helped me put my thoughts together during a confusing time.
William is a good listener, gathers the facts and my feelings, then creates a thoughtful concise message and response. Talks from experience as well. He has been very helpful during this difficult time
In the past my therapist would be interested in what was best for them. William is interested in what is best for me. Asking me to confront what in the past I avoided it has only been a short while and I have seen the best results of my life.
In a couple of sessions Bill has assisted in improving my emotional IQ.
William is great. He listens to me, validates my experiences, but also challenges my thinking. William has helped me to grow because he lets me voice my feelings and thoughts but also helps me to identify the ways in which my thinking may be getting in my own way. William helps me to see the good in myself and encourages me to purse that version of myself.
William has been a great support for me during a difficult time in my life. He is a great listener and genuinely cares about your issues and challenges you with insights. I am excited to continue working with him!
Bill is not only empathetic, but also wise. He guides me toward better decisions without telling me what to do. His counsel has been extremely helpful as I navigate complicated issues, and I always gain clarity from our sessions.
I've been working with Bill for over two years. He came into a life at a point where I was very conflicted/confused emotionally and was going through some painful experiences with my family and my wife. Though his guidance, I was able to address my emotions with the situation , gain acceptance in the relationships I have in life, and achieve a form of inner peace that I had not previously thought possible. He continues to help me today navigate through the emotional challenges I experience in day-to-day life, both short-term and long-term problems, and I have the utmost confidence in his coaching that I am becoming a better person. I highly recommend his services.
Bill is a very knowledgeable and helpful counselor and I would recommend him to anyone looking for help!
This is my first experience with counselling, and Bill has been an excellent guide to the world of counselling; and an excellent counselor.
It was important to me to have a male counselor around my own age, and I consider myself very lucky to have been able to hook up with Bill.
We message weekly and video chat weekly or every other week depending on my schedule. He's a good listener and he offers good, judgement free advice.
I feel very fortunate that I have Bill as a resource.
Bill is a terrific Counselor, great listener and very practical! He has helped m out tremendously and I would recommend him to anybody who felt they need help!
I have been texting and talking to William for a year maybe, and the therapy changed my life.
I went from being destructive to very calm. I also gave up on a lot of bad habits.
I had been seeing a therapist for many years and he just knows how to help me. Explain things, support me and make me feel better about moving forward. Thank you !
William has been my first experience talking to someone and I am very grateful he was so capable and friendly. With his help I feel like I’m finally able to start working on my personal issues that I’ve avoided for a long time.
William has been very helpful during my time couseling with him. He's attentive and patient. I really appreciate his insight. It brought clarity to questions I am struggling with.
I have recommended this app to 5 ppl because of Will. I think that speaks volumes
I'm honestly blown away by how helpful this process has been. I went in with pretty low expectations, but figured it was worth trying. Bill is insightful, supportive and so knowledgeable. He doesn't just say things, he backs up his statements with facts and resources. I really can't say enough good things. I'm just so grateful to have been paired with him.
William was very effective in assisting me in identifying my desired future and possible pathways to obtain it. He was quick in responding to my thoughts and posed questions to probe my thinking. He provided additional materials to read and ponder. I would recommend him fully.
He’s thorough and gives very helpful feedback to my concerns. I trust his expertise 100%
Will has been fantastic. He is very clear about how he likes to work, and that makes it much easier to share my own feelings. Doesn't play games (still a fun guy though!), and offers sound advice rooted in many different schools of thought (unlike some of the other counselors I was matched with). He worked with me on grief from my past, as well as coping with the fear of the future. Would highly recommend.
Great counselor who provides timely responses, is empathetic and understanding, and is a true professional.
Great guy. This is my first time in therapy and I have gotten such great feedback and advice. I feel like I have a handle in my life. Bill has great insight and a great sense of humor.
William was very helpful. He sent me a lot of useful info and explained how to deal with my problem step by step. He understood what my problem was and how to solve it.
Mr. Dougherty is a thoughtful listener, sums up what you’re saying, provides action items, and shares related knowledge. I look forward to getting deeper into my issues with him and growing in rapport and trust over the coming months.
Dr. Dougherty is a pleasure to talk to and a great therapist. I particularly like his approach of assessing the types of words you use to describe a situation. He's a great listener and provides tons of insightful questions that make me go 'Ah Ha!'
William is extremely knowledgable, supportive and great to talk to. His background is extensive and he was the perfect fit for me to understand a current issue I was dealing with. I highly recommend him to those of us that tend to be more cerebral and want to seek deeper understanding of ourselves or certain situations. Every conversation I had with William was valuable and helpful.
Dr William is great, reasonable and very good at listening.
William and I have been working with each other for a little over two weeks together now and he has been nothing less than a helpful and reliable person to talk about my issues. We communicate on a regular basis and once every two weeks we chose to have phone conversations to better discuss any issues I may be having that week. I have a busy schedule and usually don’t have the time to sit in a doctor’s office to seek help from a psychiatrist so being able to have the freedom to online access to speak with my counselor has been phenomenal.
William is very professional and very good to talk to. He is patient, not judgemental and listens and understands your concerns. He then asks pertinent questions and gives advice and his thoughts on how to best tackle a challenge. William is also very nice to talk to and makes you feel comfortable. I was apprehensive at first but felt at ease immediately once I talked to him. He is also very supportive.
William is a wonderful counselor who is insightful and makes you feel immediately better. I learned a lot from his expertise and would recommend him to anyone I know! I've seen a number of counselors and William has been by far the best!
William is an extremely intelligent and talented man that understands the needs of his patients. He knows to ask the right questions in order to assess the situation and provide an unbiased opinion. He's helped me tremulously during a messy breakup and I really don't know what I would have done without him.
William gets at the heart of the issue and also asks questions that give you the opportunity to look at a situation from a different perspective. He is supportive, kind and professional. I don't feel judged and feel that I am a safe space to be as honest as possible. I needed someone that I could talk to about things that I've been struggling to even think and I'm simply grateful.