Dr. Erin’s mission is to provide high quality, holistic therapy services for Boone, North Carolina and surrounding communities in Watauga, Ashe, Wilkes, Caldwell, and Avery counties.
Dr. Erin Sesemann, PhD, LMFT, CBIS
I take a holistic approach to therapy with the aim of helping my clients improve their overall well-being by bridging the mind-body connection. With specialized training in Medical Family Therapy, EMDR therapy, and certification as a brain injury specialist, I actively integrate brain and body health into therapy through a variety of different approaches. I strive to create an open, non-judgmental space for people from diverse backgrounds and social locations.
My journey in holistic health began during my undergraduate education as I competed as a collegiate athlete. As an student-athlete, I was interested in how my body and mind affected my athletic performance. I came away from this experience appreciating just how closely the mind and body are connected.
Through my graduate education, I specialized in assessing and treating individuals, couples, and families with consideration of how their culture, societal norms, community, schools, and the environment affect them. This includes paying specific attention to how the healthcare system plays a pivotal role in many people’s well-being.
I completed my Medical Family Therapy Pre-Doctoral Internship at the C.A.R.F Accredited Rehabilitation Center in Vidant Medical Center, a 900-bed academic medical center in Greenville, North Carolina. Here, I helped start the Medical Family Therapy program for the Rehabilitation Center that provided family therapy to individuals and families who recently experienced life-altering illness or injury that often resulted in new disability. I worked on issues like relationship conflict, family stress, coping, depression, anxiety, grief/loss, adjustment, and PTSD with people who experienced traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injuries or back surgeries, stroke, cancer, amputation, heart failure, and other types of health conditions or medical traumas.
To me, holistic health also means good communication within your healthcare team. At the rehab center, I collaborated with healthcare professionals from a variety of different disciplines: physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech language pathology, recreation therapy, social work, physical medicine and rehabilitation, rehabilitation nursing. Now, in my own practice, I want to discuss what your healthcare team means to you and I am invested in helping you work better with your team.
The last thing I want to mention about holistic health is that it includes the health of the team members too. Healthy professionals are important to building the foundation of an effective healthcare team. Therefore, I want to give a shout out to all employees within the healthcare system! I witnessed the immense toll it takes on people to be employees within this system. As such, I focused my dissertation on developing recommendations for actions that organizations could take to reduce burnout and improve health through addressing employees’ job stress and social connectedness at work. The results of my dissertation titled, “Healthcare Employees Burnout, Job Stress, Health, and Workplace Social Networks: Addressing the Quadruple Aim,” was published in the peer reviewed journal Families, Systems, & Health and continues to inform my work with clients today.
- PhD in Medical Family Therapy from East Carolina University
- MS in Marriage and Family Therapy from Oklahoma State University
- Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (NC LMFT #2067)
- Professional Counselor Telehealth Provider (SC TLC #257)
- Fully-trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy
- Certified Brain Injury Specialist
- Certified in Prepare & Enrich Inventory Assessment
- American Association for Marriage and Family Approved Supervisor
- Certified in safeTALK Suicide Prevention
- Trauma-focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
- Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy
- Filial Therapy and Parent Child Interaction Therapy
Ms. Emily Cheek
Emily’s commitment to holistic health comes from her experience working as a board-certified music therapist for the past three years. She currently works as an intern therapist while pursuing her master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Appalachian State University. She is able to offer therapy services at a reduced rate. Visit our Investment page to learn more.
She has experience working with clients of different ages (young children to older adults) and has worked with clients at pediatric medical centers, mental health facilities, and assisted living facilities. Her experiences working with individuals and their families in these settings encouraged her to pursue an education in marriage and family therapy to better support her clients and their families during some of their most difficult moments.
Emily is pursuing specializations in working with families who are coping with medical diagnoses, trauma, suffering, and loss. Emily’s approach to therapy is from an emotion-focused, experiential, and biopsychosocial lens. She believes that each client is the expert of their own lived experiences. With this approach, she hopes to help families, couples, and individuals learn how to more effectively navigate their lives toward a direction of healing.