Counseling Clinic in Grayton Beach
By Joyce Owen
Dealing with an emotional crisis can be difficult. Finding a safe and comforting place to discuss personal issues is the goal of the staff at 30-A Therapy.
Rosemary McLendon founded the practice with mental health counselor Suzette DeJarnette last November. At first, McLendon, who is a social worker, hoped to offer care to patients at the clinic, but she soon learned managing the facility would be the best use of her time and talents.
When a prospective client calls, it is McLendon’s soothing voice that they hear.
“It’s hard to make that first call. Many callers don’t know how to begin,” McLendon said. “I ask, ‘how soon do you need to come in’ and we go from there. We strive to arrange appointments within 24 hours whenever possible.”
When patients arrive at the clinic, it is McLendon who greets them, offers them something to drink and generally works to make sure the experience is a pleasant one.
With calming water features, soft music and intimate, but non-clinical looking offices, it doesn’t feel like a medical setting, said DeJarnette, which is important to many patients.
Dr. Jack Keller, a clinical psychologist, always wanted to work with other mental health professionals in this type of setting.
In Pensacola, Keller had an office in his house, which many patients preferred because of the privacy.
“This (clinic) reminds me of that,” he said.
The clinic in Uptown Grayton, offers a variety of mental health services, which allows for easy referral between practitioners, he said.
“It has been very liberating to do this now,” said DeJarnette who had previously worked a more corporate health care system. “Here we can carve our own way. We can be creative running groups here. If patients need stress management, or a program for eating disorders, we can offer that,” DeJarnette said.
“Rosemary is open to try things,” Keller said. “We kind of know what we can handle.”
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