About Me

me

Joseph D. LaBeau, M.Ed., Licensed Professional Counselor

Independent Private Practice Since 2005.

Notice:   I currently work 100% on-line with telecounseling.  On-line counseling is not for clients who are experiencing crisis or are in danger.  These services require urgent /emergency care specialists and can be obtained in most communities by calling 911 or the local number for emergency services.   Due to the ever-present possibility of technical interruption in service/connection, certain interventions and techniques are either limited or not used with on line-clients (eg., clinical hypnosis).

STYLE/ORIENTATION DETAILS: 

I am experienced in mental health and primary care medical clinics, having the privilege of having worked with some of the the best physicians, psychiatrists and counselors in the Rio Grande Valley. I work with a broad spectrum of clients working on an even broader spectrum of problems.  I am equally at ease in play therapy with a four year old traumatized child, as in talk-therapy with a depressed teen, as in deep psychodynamic psychotherapy with a 50 year old executive with addiction issues.

To do well, I need to understand all my client's current concerns, so my clients do not have other therapy or counseling relationships while they work with me.  Also, I do my counseling in live sessions which clients schedule themselves as frequently as they wish by choosing open times on my calendar.

My core professional values are client welfare, client respect, and kindness--in that order  My professional mission is to help clients to develop awareness, present choices, and provide support to improve mental health. 

I do not hold an MD or any other academic doctorate or title. Instead, I have chosen to perfect my practical clinical skills in working patients with extensive, highly expert, post-licensure supevision and completion of the following non-academic certificates: Behavioral Health, University of Mass., School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine, One-Year Program in Modern Psychoanalysis, Association for Clinical and Applied Psychoanalysis, Livingston, NJ, Certified Clinical Hypnosis Counselor, Assoc. for Clinical Hypnosis, Bloomingdale, Ill., Clinical Criminal Justice Specialist, National Association of Forensic Counselors, Fort Wayne, In.

Because of my training in behavioral health and psychiatry at two separate medical schools, I take a behavioral medicine approach to many counseling problems and am quite familiar with various psychotropic medications. Because of my training in psychoanalysis, I also believe the counselor-patient relationship is the key to healing many non-organic illnesses and relieving much suffering

I work with clients in what is called the "out-patient, non-urgent care" model.  That is, I work in regularly scheduled on-line meetings with clients who feel well-served by this arrangement. 

These clients schedule their appointments themselves, are pretty good at keeping their appointments, and start the encounter by presenting their current symptoms and concerns as best they can, and then respond cooperatively as I explore their concerns and share therapeutic ideas.  

These kinds of clients often do very well with me, many times, remarkably well. 

I do not work well with clients who are not ready for counseling to begin with, or who are quite ready but feel they need attention outside of scheduled sessions. 

On-line counseling is not for clients who are experiencing crisis or are in danger.  These services require urgent /emergency care specialists and can be obtained in most communities by calling 911 or the local number for emergency services.

Also, my way of working-seeing clients in regulatly scheduled meetings- does not work well with clients who need between-session attention. 

For the client who has day-to-day vulnerability for serious disruption and really does need between session support, if you are not now in crisis (if you are --call 911 immediately),  I recommend seeking face-to-face care from a licensed mental health professional who can link you to vital LOCAL mental health support services.  This should include crisis managment, case management, and medical social-worker services, over and beyond regular counseling services.   The Texas Department of Health and Human Services also has a local low-cost/free Mental Health Authority serving every area of Texas. (see   https://hhs.texas.gov/services/mental-health-substance-use/mental-health-substance-use-resources/outreach-screening-assessment-referral)

For those clients who are are able to self manage safely between sessions, are ready and able to work with me solely in scheduled tele-health appointments, and can keep regular sessions and feel well served by them, please continue onward.  We may well be a good match.  

What is a session with me like?   As suggested above, sessions with successful clients usually began with them telling me about something that troubled them at the moment---"where the shoe pinches."   There then is some  exploring of that to understand the problem and its roots.  There was also some teaching, occasional discussion about life and telling of stories that make a point, and some applying the newly taught idea to their current concern.  There was almost always a good dose of humor and connection.  The patients who had these positive experiences with me were all able to trust me and respect the process I use.  Like any relationship, I expect our relationship to grow in time, becoming more and more trusting, flexible, relaxed and comfortable. 

SUPERVISOR REVIEWS: My previous supervisor, Steven Pliszka, M.D., Chair, Department of Psychiatry, UTSAHSC Medical School, writes: “Mr. LaBeau dealt with a variety of very difficult cases with great skill …..he always had excellent input for other therapists. His clinical judgment is superb…”Alex Kudisch, M.D., Diplomat, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Valley Family Guidance Center, "I have consulted with Mr. LaBeau in fifty-two cases..[and he ] ... has demonstrated effective clinical counseling skills....I endorse him to become a Certified, Clinical Mental Health Counselor." Hector Villareal C. LCSW, Board Approved Clinical Counseling Supervisor, Utilization Management, Texas Tropical Behavioral Health, "[Mr. LaBeau]..has demonstrated effective clinical counseling skills while under my supervision..100 hours of face-to-face clinical supervision over the required two-year period...It has been a privilege to supervise someone as competent as Mr. LaBeau"

COUNSELING; ORIENTATION CONTINUED IN GREATER DETAIL: I am a cognitive-analytic psychotherapist, which means I believe that the problems we experience today have multiple causes. Some come from current thinking (cognitive) mistakes and distortions. Some come from repeated unhelpful behaviors. These problems are helped by breaking old habits and learning more skillful ways of thinking and behaving and then practicing these skills many times in various situations.  Cognitive Behavioral Threapy (CBT) is the approach I use for this work, most notably, the work of Albert Ellis, author of Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy (see www.albertellis.org ).

Others problems, however, are more deeply rooted in our mind, and have been developing for a long while. Short-term, solution focused, problem-solving type approaches often fail this kind of patient because they do not help us with the deeper, unconscious part of ourselves that causes us to repeat our mistakes and creates our symptoms in the first place. This work traditionally requires a more classical analytical approach, learning about how the client came to suffer they way they do over the course of their life and learning about their struggles with their own self image,  especially focusing on their childhood and their relationships with parent figures.

Here is where I make an important point about the therapist you choose to work on deeper issues. I recommend an analytically-oriented therapist. They are variously differentiated as "psycho-dynamic" or" psycho-analytical" therapists who apply psychoanalytical principles to shorter-term, more typical psychotherapy, or as "analysts" or "psychoanalysts" who are even more highly trained, more intensely analyzed themselves, and undertake the lengthly and intensive process of authentic classical psychoanalysis with their clients, requiring three to five sessions per week, sometimes for a period of years. 

Here is why:

First, I believe classical analytic therapists are a very intelligent, creative, compassionate, and are an extremely well trained type of therapist. Second, beyond having years of specialized post-licensure training in analysis, they must also undergo personal analysis themselves for an extensive period of time if they are to have any hope of helpfully analyzing their patients.

Incredibly, most, if not all, other schools of therapy are not known to have such a requirement, i.e., personal therapy for the therapist.

I personally am of the opinion that I would only want to see a therapist who has undergone substantial depth therapy themselves first, before seeing me.

First, because then I would have reason to believe my therapist is not burdened with major unrecognized issues themselves that would affect their work with me, and second because my therapist would then have a sound understanding of what the patient experience in therapy is like, and likely would have been humbled to find that, in the quest for truth that is therapy, they themselves are far from perfect, and not so very different from their patients.

SPECIAL QUALIFICATIONS: I completed a One Year Certificate Program (2013), followed by clinical group supervision, which was then followed by about another year in personal analytic-psychotherapy in which I was the client -- all through the Academy of Clinical and Applied Psychoanalysis in Livingston New Jersey. I also completed one- year of Child Studies as a Fellow at The Center for Psychoanalytic Studies in Houston. I have extraordinary medical training for a counselor, including three years of post-license clinical supervision by a Board-Certified Psychiatrist and Department Chair at UTHSC-SA Medical School (see above quote by Dr. Pliszka) and have obtained a Certificate in Primary Care Behavioral Health from University of Mass., Medical School, Family Medicine Dept.

I have five years experience working in a primary care medical setting and provided training in behavioral medicine to 3rd year medical students as they would circulate through their rotation at my site.

I am clinically certified by the National Forensic Counselor Association as a Criminal Justice Specialist and am a Certified Consultant by the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis. I hold professional memberships in the Texas Counseling Association, the  Texas Association of Marriage and Family Counselors, and the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis

I ascribe to the highest standards of Professional Counseling and make it a special point to welcome persons of all faiths, creeds, colors, sexual orientations, and countries of origin. I take special care to be very respectful of each of my patients and to honor their faith and religious affiliation or positions, as well as respecting the preferences of those who would prefer to keep the counseling relationship strictly secular and scientific, free from religious or spiritual commentary.

I do hold a certificate in Youth Ministry from the Diocese of Brownsville and University of Dayton, and, although I strictly maintain the role of therapist with my patients at all times, upon specific request I may offer a faith-integrated treatment plan which may include sharing sacred scripture, prayers, meditations, and blessings. I believe that the faith traditions and practices of the client can be a rich resource to help the client in times of challenge and change.

I am confident your will feel respected, comfortable and well cared for in my practice, whatever your view on religious matters.

Please call to learn more about my counseling approach and how I can help you.


SPECIALTIES

  • Stress, Anxiety
  • Addictions
  • Anger management
  • Depression
  • Coaching

Also experienced in:
Relationship issues, Family conflicts, Trauma and abuse, Grief, Intimacy-related issues, Parenting issues, Self esteem, Career difficulties, Bipolar disorder, Coping with life changes , Compassion fatigue, ADHD, Abandonment, Read more...

Clinical approaches:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Hypnotherapy, Motivational Interviewing, Psychodynamic Therapy

Years of Experience: 15


LICENSING

LPC #19445 (Expires: 2021-09-30)

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Location

Availability

By Appointment Only

Monday:

10:00 am-5:00 pm

Tuesday:

10:00 am-5:00 pm

Wednesday:

10:00 am-5:00 pm

Thursday:

10:00 am-5:00 pm

Friday:

10:00 am-5:00 pm

Saturday:

10:00 am-3:00 pm

Sunday:

Closed