Janine Joly-DeMars, MS, LCMFT :: Senior Associate Therapist
Clinical Degree: Northwestern University, Couple & Family Therapy
Available: Weekdays; weekday evenings; weekends
Office location: Bethesda; virtually for those located in Maryland
Fees: $190/50-minute session; $285/90-minute session; $1350 Prepare/Enrich 5-session package
Clinical Special Interests: Intergenerational healing; building healthy self-esteem; trauma; grief and bereavement; self-harm and suicidality; masculinity and men’s issues; strengthening couple/parent relationships; navigating cultural difference
Prepare/Enrich Certified: Yes
My client-centered, strength-based approach empowers and motivates my clients to direct the pace and trajectory of therapy. I assist my clients with identifying their goals for treatment, as well as the constraints preventing them from achieving them. As the therapeutic process unfolds, we work together to determine how to remove the constraints—and sometimes explore how they got there in first place. I am knowledgeable about and comfortable with a wide range of family therapy models and interventions, all of which offer useful tools for understanding how problems originate, as well as how to effect positive change here and now.
As an MFT student at Northwestern University, I was fortunate to observe and learn from some of the most prominent members of my field. Later, as a therapist at a psychiatric correctional facility, I was fortunate to witness and serve severely mentally ill incarcerated persons from all over the state of Maryland.
While ostensibly quite divergent, these experiences have scrubbed and honed my clinical competence in vivid harmony. Together they have taught me that the foundation of competence for a therapist is not knowledge or skills, but rather compassion and humility. I cannot learn, nor hope to resolve, what I do not know that I do not know: my clients are the experts about their lives—not me. Furthermore, I cannot expect my clients to be open with me about anything if I do not demonstrate that I respect, appreciate, and admire them—for the hardships they have endured, for the strength with which they have endured them, and for the courage to heal and grow even stronger.
Conducting therapy is an exercise in curiosity, but it is not a difficult exercise because people and their relationships are fascinating to me. I believe that hearing each new client’s story is a sacred privilege, and I am blessed to be allowed to perform it. The resilience, resourcefulness, and capacity for affection evident in each person, couple, and family that enters my office never fail to impress me. When I am not at work, I try to care for my mind, body, and spirit, which generally takes the form of cooking, eating, and watching YouTube videos with my husband.