About Dr. Schafer I am a Licensed Psychologist and Licensed Specialist in School Psychology. I have extensive training and experience both in counseling/therapy and in evaluation of children, adolescents, and adults. I first became interested in psychology working as a recreation therapist in a residential treatment center while completing my undergraduate degree at Trinity University in San Antonio. I earned my Ph.D. from The University of Texas at Austin, with a focus in brain based behavior and neuropsychology. I subsequently completed an internship at the University of Minnesota Medical Center with rotations in neuropsychology and pediatric psychology, with a focus on children who were experiencing a range of difficulties including cystic fibrosis, prematurity, metabolic disorders, fetal alcohol exposure, developmental disabilities, psychiatric conditions, and learning and attention difficulties. Additional supervised experience within school districts and in private practice broadened my exposure to the varied needs of individuals in the community. Through years of experience and additional training, I have gained additional expertise in working with individuals and couples who are experiencing infertility, pregnancy loss, and assisted reproduction (including using donor gametes and gestational surrogacy).
Most of us are faced with challenges in life. Sometimes these challenges become overwhelming. Other times, we notice a pattern repeating itself that seems destructive or unhealthy. By seeking a therapist, you are indicating you are ready to seek change and find a path towards increased happiness, life satisfaction, and/or coping strategies. While it is easy to follow the path of least resistance or to do what we are used to doing, you are taking the time and making the effort to implement a new direction in your life.
I view therapy as a partnership in which a combination of identifying your strengths and finding new strategies to overcome your struggles is key. In therapy, I utilize a variety of strategies to reach the goals that you help identify. Recent research in neuroscience has indicated that our brains are able to change. Even well-established patterns of thinking and behavior can be modified to more adaptive ways of thinking and acting.
Finding a therapist who can understand your needs and with whom you feel connected is of primary importance. When you choose a therapist, it is essential that you feel at ease, that your therapist understands your concerns, and that you are comfortable with treatment goals and methods. As such, establishing a strong relationship will be my first goal in our work together. It is important to me that I help you identify strengths and then use a range of strategies including relaxation techniques, cognitive behavioral therapy, and solutions-oriented therapy to address your individual needs.
I work with individuals ranging in age from adolescence to late adulthood with a range of struggles, including adjustment to life stressors, anxiety, depression, Attention-Deficit/
Areas of Therapy Specialization
- Improving happiness & emotional well-being
- Life transitions
- Relationship issues
- Infertility, pregnancy loss, and assisted reproduction (including IVF, donor egg/sperm, gestational surrogacy)
My training and experience have resulted in my interest in ensuring that clients with a broad range of difficulties utilize their patterns of strengths to achieve their goals. My experience in schools has helped me to complete evaluations that are useful to students, parents, and teachers. I understand how to access special education and Section 504 services effectively. Additionally, I can ascertain whether extended time or other accommodations would benefit a student in college entrance exams and develop a plan for college accommodations. Providing practical and effective recommendations based on an individual’s pattern of strengths and weaknesses is my ultimate goal in completing assessments.
Areas of Assessment Specialization
- B.A. – 1993, Trinity University
- M.A. – 1998, The University of Texas at Austin
- Ph.D. – 2002, The University of Texas at Austin
- Licensed Psychologist, Texas #33213
- Licensed Specialist in School Psychology, Texas #31804
Infertility Counseling Austin