Dr Cher A Geiger, Licensed Clinical Psychologist
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I began my career more than twenty-five years ago with a profound curiosity about the emerging concept of emotional intelligence. I have continued to use the evolving principles of EI, combining that interest with an emphasis on overall psychological health. Early on, I developed a passion for assisting couples as they worked to create greater quality in their relationships. This led me to complete all levels of training in couples therapy offered by the brilliant John and Julie Gottman. Additionally, I am deeply concerned about the challenges that men face in our society and began to study men's issues early in my career. This interest was motivated by my desire to see men and women understand and appreciate the gifts inherent in their differing perspectives, with the hope of bringing about greater respect, harmony, and grace in their daily interactions. It has been a true privilege to provide support and proven strategies to clients as they endeavor to become their best selves!
I love working with adult men and women, individually, and especially within relationships. I utilize the principles of emotional intelligence to strengthen a client's understanding of his/her feelings/emotions and his/her ability to increasingly manage difficult emotions and create greater positivity–yes, it can be done! With patient and compassionate self-understanding and acceptance of the feelings one experiences, he/she is better able to develop greater understanding, tolerance, and compassion for others. Emotional Intelligence allows a client to more effectively enjoy the gifts of others and to manage the challenges inherent in human interaction. I believe we are relational individuals and my approach emphasizes the benefits of creating greater quality in relationships. While I have not specialized in supporting LGBTQ clients, I have worked effectively and respectfully with those who have sought my help, and have achieved a greater understanding of the societal challenges (and hopefully some effective solutions) some face in addition to all the usual challenges life presents.
I began training in EMDR trauma treatment in 1998 and have continued to follow the evolving guidelines for effective treatment of trauma, both on an individual level, and I recently completed the Gottman training that brilliantly combines compassionate acknowledgement of trauma in the context of couples therapy.
Early in my career, I became aware that in addition to being effective in relieving the suffering of many individuals, psychology could also result in optimizing the functioning of already high-functioning individuals, opening the door for the principles of psychology, especially positive psychology, to be utilized by a broader range of individuals, benefitting all by reducing the stigma of seeking help. One of my beloved professors taught her students to adopt the perspective of Thomas Szasz, who suggested that if we called it "problems in living" rather than mental illness, the stigma of seeking help would be greatly reduced. We are making great strides in that direction. It has been my goal never to judge the behavior of my clients but rather to serve as an assistant/partner in helping my clients decide which behaviors serve them well and how to strengthen those behaviors, while letting undesirable behaviors be less and less worthy of my clients' energy as they increase "self love," which is for me, the ultimate goal of therapy.
I obtained a master's degree in counseling psychology, and a doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Adler University. What I loved most about my experience at Adler is the idea that we are social creatures and most problems can be traced to our desire to belong to and connect with others. The pandemic taught us that what we need most is connection to other human beings (APA, 2020). I endeavor to assist my clients in creating greater quality in all relationships, and I believe we must explore in therapy all areas of human relationships, communication of course, but also fitness, finances, substance use, relational integrity, sexuality, commitment, trust, as well as looking at what we may have learned from our beloved families of origin. I have infinite patience and love to hear every detail of a client's life and I remember almost all of those details! It's like reading a wonderful novel and never forgetting the essence of that beloved main character.
Recent research has informed us that by learning to live in gratitude for the things we already possess in our lives, we will be happier. Learning to face our struggles as challenges we can manage rather than threats that will defeat us, greatly reduces our stress. Choosing happiness as our attitude actually leads to success and greater motivation rather than needing to achieve the success first in order to be happy.
I offer a 30-minute conversation with potential new clients to assess whether our communication styles are compatible, and to inform clients of my approach. I often recommend interviewing at least 3 therapists as research has long supported the idea that it is the quality of the relationship between client and therapist that is most healing. As an out-of-network therapist, I know therapy can be very expensive for clients but the benefits of increasing a gentle self love can last a lifetime. I know that my clients are finished with their therapy when I see a quiet elegance emerge as evidence that they know life will continue to present challenges but they believe in their ability to manage those challenges with grace and respect for themselves and others.
Throughout my career I have chosen not to be listed on any insurer's preferred provider panel. That means I am covered only as an out-of-network therapist and usually at a lower rate than those agreeing to be on a provider list. Please check with your insurer about your out-of-network coverage as you may find that only an in-network therapist is compatible with your budget.
Specialties & Clinical Interests
- Anger Issues
- Bipolar & Other Mood Disorders
- Borderline Personality Disorder
- Divorce & Separation
- Family Conflict
- Fertility, Pregnancy & Postpartum
- Grief & Loss
- Life Coaching
- Men's Issues
- Parenting & Parent-Child Relationships
- Pre-Marital & Marital Issues
- Stress/Stress Management
- Trauma & Ptsd
- Women's Issues
- Client-Centered Therapy
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR)