Aaron D. Kirkwood, LAMFT

Aaron D Kirkwood• Bachelor of Science, Psychology, University of Georgia, 2011
• Master of Arts, Marriage and Family Therapy, Northcentral University, 2016
• Doctorate of Marriage and Family Therapy, in progress

As we become aware of ourselves as storytellers we realize we can use our stories to heal and make ourselves whole.
– Susan Wittig Albert

Do you ever feel like a character in someone else’s story? Do you ever feel as if life is happening TO you? As a therapist, my favorite moments are those when my clients discover that there is a voice inside that has long been silenced by the dominant voices of others. This voice represents who they are at their core but it has been stifled by others; from parents to teachers, from employers to spouses, from television to the internet. I believe therapy is about making a space for your voice.

Do you find yourself in the same conflicts repeatedly with your partner or children? Do you argue about “nothing” and then later wonder why you were even arguing to begin with? Or perhaps, instead of arguing, you barely communicate at all. Whether we are working on conflict resolution or increasing warmth and intimacy, I love to see couples and families experience each other and their relationship in a new way, or in a way that they haven’t in years.

I enjoy working with individuals, couples, and families from a variety of backgrounds. I work with a diverse range of couples and families. I welcome all types of relationships and families, including LGBTQ individuals and couples.  I would like to extend a special invitation to people who may be feeling especially distressed, alienated, or afraid because of our current political climate, or who otherwise feel that they are outside of the mainstream culture for whatever reason.

In my work with couples, I frequently use tools from the Gottman Method which is based on research ongoing since the 1970’s. Read more information on the Gottman Method by visiting https://www.gottman.com/about/the-gottman-method/. What I love about the Gottman Method is that it is backed by science, and is also accessible and relatable. Though each relationship is unique, this research has uncovered the essence of what makes for successful long-term relationships and what causes conflict and ill-feelings that ultimately lead to the dissolution of so many relationships.

My background in marriage and family therapy has given me the tools to work with individuals, couples, and families. Each presents a unique set of opportunities and challenges, keeping therapy interesting and engaging for everyone. Within the comfort of the therapeutic relationship, it is my hope that clients will become equipped to seize those opportunities and face those challenges. Clients should feel comfortable and safe in therapy. It is, after all, a sanctuary where a person can just be who they are without fear of judgment or the dismissal of their thoughts and desires. I believe that therapy is ultimately about hope and no matter what has happened in a person’s past, no matter how dysfunctional their relationships currently are, that there is always hope. I love the analogy of our lives as a story, because that means the chapter entitled “Tomorrow” hasn’t yet been written. I believe that therapy can help clients realize that they are the authors of their own story and therefore they get to decide how the next chapter turns out.

I have evening and weekend appointments available and offer reduced fee services for clients who cannot comfortably afford to pay full fee for services. I offer premarital counseling which will qualify couples for a discounted, and in some cases, free marriage license in the state of Georgia.

Aaron is seeing clients in the Athens location.

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