Kara M. Starkey
Marriage & Family Therapist License #45806
1588 Homestead Road, Suite D, Santa Clara, CA 95050
Office Phone (408) 850-1484
Email therapy@karastarkeymft.com

Creative, Compassionate Psychotherapist in Private Practice
Experienced in Conducting Therapy with Children, Adolescents, Adults, Couples, Families, and Groups

Kara Starkey

Change can be Difficult...
Allow Me to Help You Succeed on Your Journey


          My part-time private practice is located in a beautiful historical Victorian called Kiely House in Santa Clara. I offer daytime and evening hours on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, and treat children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families. I have background in school, agency, clinic, outpatient hospital and private practice settings. I accept cash or check as means of payment, and some insurance plans including Aetna, Cigna, Victim Witness and Valley Health Plan. I am also a participating member of the ComPsych and MHNet employee assistance programs (EAP). I provide long-term therapy, short-term counseling, and Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD). Sliding scale or income-based fee discounts may be available in cases of financial hardship.

          I enjoy working with children of all ages, treating for school attendance problems, simple phobias, pervasive unhappiness, family divorce, grief or separation issues, disruptive classroom behavior, communication problems, suicidal tendencies, aggressive behavior, peer conflicts, physical/sexual abuse, neglect, oppositional tendencies, ADD or ADHD, poor self-esteem, problems adjusting to life transitions, withdrawal tendencies, and bizarre behaviors. I also have expertise working with children in the foster care system. A combination of play therapy, art therapy, and talk therapy is utilized, as appropriate per the child's developmental level.

          I also treat adults experiencing a wide range of emotional and relational difficulties, such as depression, anxiety, trauma, parenting issues, stress, separation/divorce and other life crisis situations. In addition, I have experience performing in-depth psychological assessments for patients considering bariatric (weight loss) surgery. Though I dislike using labels, I tend to use a "relational" approach to psychotherapy, a combination of Object Relations, Attachment, and Humanistic theories.

          Treating "difficult" teens is also one of my specialties. I have led domestic violence intervention group therapy for teens, and treated many at-risk youth in the school and juvenile justice systems. I have experience treating adolescents who have challenges with depression, suicidality, anxiety, physical/sexual abuse, substance use/abuse, self-injurious behavior (i.e., "cutting" or "carving"), and teen pregnancy/motherhood.

          My passion and unique specialty is animal-assisted therapy. A fully-trained animal is directed by a mental health professional with specialized expertise, and the therapy is designed to promote improvement in social, emotional, and/or cognitive functioning. Animal-assisted therapy may aid in increasing verbal interactions, increasing attention skills, developing leisure/recreation skills, increasing self-esteem, and reducing anxiety, depression, and loneliness.

          Please feel free to call or email for an appointment or consultation, and I welcome any referrals that may be appropriate for me. Thank you for visiting my web site.



EDUCATION


Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology, Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, CA

Bachelor's Degree in Psychology, University of California, Santa Cruz, CA



OTHER INTERESTS AND ACHIEVEMENTS



PROFESSIONAL PSYCHOLOGICAL ORGANIZATION MEMBERSHIPS


  NAMI AAMFT Clinical Member Association for Play Therapy California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists Santa Clara County Psychological Association Northern California Society for Psychoanalytic Psychology

Last Update: 04/09/12