top of page

I have limited availability for new clients.

I believe being deeply understood, in the context of a safe and collaborative therapeutic relationship, is the catalyst for healing and transformation. In our work together, what often are considered symptoms are viewed as important messages about one’s lived experiences and psychological needs. We will work together to understand your distress, and the deeper meaning underlying that distress. My focus in therapy is on understanding the root cause of your suffering, rather than focusing on treating symptoms alone. 


My orientation to clinical work is grounded in psychodynamic, humanistic, existential, and phenomenological approaches to human suffering. I see our early experiences as largely influential and formative of our later adult experiences. With this in mind, much of my work draws on attachment theory, and understanding how early attachment relationships shape and inform how we relate and attach to others in adulthood. I also take seriously how experiences of oppression contribute to distress and suffering. I actively integrate a focus on various aspects of identity (i.e. gender, sexual orientation, ability, race, class, socioeconomic status) and how those aspects shape and inform your experience in the world. 

As a psychodynamic psychologist drawing upon self-psychology, I focus on how unmet psychological needs may contribute to your experience of suffering. I especially enjoy doing this work with couples and have specific training in Emotionally-Focused Therapy (EFT) for Couples. Using an EFT framework, I help couples examine patterns they find themselves stuck in, alongside understanding the attachment yearnings present in couple distress. 

I continue to grow and hone my therapeutic approach by participating in advanced training in Intersubjective Self-Psychology through the Training and Research in Intersubjective Self Psychology (TRISP) Foundation in New York, NY, as well as continued consultation and training in Emotionally Focused Therapy. 


Clinical areas of interest include working with individuals who wish to examine family of origin concerns, as well as supporting individuals who have experienced religious trauma. I love working with members of the LGBTQIA+ community, and have specific training and experience in supporting trans* individuals pursuing transition. I also enjoy working with women’s issues across the lifespan, individuals processing and recovering from traumatic experience, first-generation college students and the transition to college or higher education. During my graduate training and post-graduate experience, I’ve worked in community mental health centers, community clinics, university counseling centers, and private practice. 



Phone: 540-208-3188

Payment Methods: I am in network with Aetna, Anthem/BCBS, Oscar, Oxford, and United Healthcare insurances. I also accept self-pay clients

Education: Ph.D. Clinical Psychology – Duquesne University

License: Virginia License # 0810008045

Pennsylvania License # PS020020

Monica Lawson, Ph.D.

Licensed Clinical Psychologist

bottom of page