Word Play Therapy

I work with clients who have a history of trauma to re-write the narratives of their lives so that t

Operating as usual


I finally made my transition and moved into my new office! I am loving sharing more of who I am with my clients. I feel fully at home in the new space and feel I can do even better work moving forward. Come and see!

Timeline Photos 10/26/2018

Timeline Photos

Trans rights are human rights.


September is National Su***de Prevention Month. Although it can be difficult to start a conversation with a friend or loved one:
To learn more: check out http://www.bethe1to.com/

Photos from Word Play Therapy's post 09/11/2018

I was recently interviewed on my favorite private practice development podcast! It was an honor to speak about the steps I have taken as a female business owner to look inward and determine how my experiences and skills can be used to help others. I focus in on how my training in trauma treatment can help the creative clients with whom I work.

8 Little Life Lessons Everyone Could Learn from Cognitive Behavioral Therapists 08/01/2018

8 Little Life Lessons Everyone Could Learn from Cognitive Behavioral Therapists

Trying to increase appreciation and understanding of one of the therapy approaches that I use called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT for short). I spoke with Lauren Smith at HealthiNation. There are so many lessons that I take from the approach about to shift my thinking. And my clients say that it gives them concrete strategies to use in their everyday lives to use more generous self-talk inside their heads and challenge the idea that all of their thoughts are true and accurate (when they might be overly negative).

8 Little Life Lessons Everyone Could Learn from Cognitive Behavioral Therapists You don’t need an anxiety disorder to benefit from CBT perspectives.


I'm reading a truly uplifting book called The Upside of Stress by Kelly McGonigal for my practice. It is changing how I think about the role of stress in my life. The major take home message is that our mindset (whether positive or negative) about stress has an impact on our health and well being. If we take a positive stance towards stress--seeing it as motivating us to accomplish important goals or using it to help others--then we can reap the benefits of our stress reaction. If we avoid our stress, we teach ourselves that we cannot handle it. If we face our stress, we build our self-confidence for solving our current and future problems. Check this book out! The author gathers together sound research that highlights the relationship between how we view stress and the outcomes of that stress in our lives. She believes the most important question to ask is, "Do I believe I have the capacity to transform stress into something good?" I am going to try to work with my clients to help them answer this question in their own meaningful ways.


Just finished teaching my course in Diagnosis and Treatment Planning to school counselors last night. It was such a rewarding experience. We processed the lessons taken away by each class member. They spoke about increased empathy for clients, a deeper understanding of the strengths and limitations of the DSM-5, increased skills in how to make diagnoses and create meaningful treatment plans with clients, developing critical thinking, and increased ability to find strengths and resilience in their clients difficult circumstances. I couldn't ask for better lessons to be taken away! I hope they will all go forward to help reduce the stigma of mental illness in their schools and communities!


May is Mental Health Awareness Month!

Is Posttraumatic Growth Possible for Me? - Word Play Therapy 03/20/2018

Is Posttraumatic Growth Possible for Me? - Word Play Therapy

Yes, it is. Take that step and reach out for help.

Is Posttraumatic Growth Possible for Me? - Word Play Therapy Individuals who experience positive adaptation after trauma are more likely to be optimistic and see the world and their future in a positive light, are social creatures, have emotional intelligence, and use therapy to find work through and find meaning after trauma.

Photos from Word Play Therapy's post 03/09/2018

I created a (hopefully) helpful brochure for my Q and A session with parents and teens about depression next week.


The Association for Su***de Prevention is an incredible resource for clinicians to understand the impact of su***de locally as well as nationally. I'll be collaborating with the AFSP next week on an event at a local high school helping parents and teachers learn more about the relationship between mental illness and su***de and identifying risk factors for suicidal ideation in adolescents.

Mental Illness Didn't Make Him Do It 02/17/2018

Mental Illness Didn't Make Him Do It

Please take the time to read so that you can understand that people who are unfortunate enough to struggle with mental health issues are more likely to be the VICTIMS of violence than the perpetrators.

Mental Illness Didn't Make Him Do It Research challenges the supposed link between mental illness and violence.


Please Stop "Pill Shaming" People Who Take Medication for Ment...

Some people can manage their mental health using exercise, meditation, therapy, and other coping skills. But there is a large group of people who also need medication to take the edge off of their significant mental health symptoms so that they can manage their lives and be able to practice these coping skills. We need to stop shaming individuals who take mental health medications. They deserve our compassion and support.


The language we use to describe ourselves, our lives, and the world around us has the power to hold us back or set us free. At Word Play Therapy, I empower people to create a new narrative that reveals their strengths, abilities, and resilience. I help anxious and depressed individuals reach their potential, survivors of traumatic experiences seek posttraumatic growth, mothers who are adjusting to their new role to thrive, and emerging adults discover their unique self-identity. Clients who work with me find that they connect more deeply with loved ones and find profound meaning in their lives. Together we can find ways to help you feel better, live more genuinely, spark your creativity, and reconnect with what makes you a singular human being.


This is an introduction to my office.

Home - Word Play Therapy 01/20/2018

Home - Word Play Therapy

Welcome to my page for my private practice! My name is Liz Witmer and I am a psychologist in Leesburg, VA. I specialize in seeing clients with a trauma history who are looking to re-write the narratives for their lives. My practice is called Word Play Therapy: www.word-play-therapy.com

Home - Word Play Therapy The language we use to describe ourselves, our lives, and the world around us has the power to hold us back or set us free. At Word Play Therapy, I empower people to create a new narrative that reveals their strengths, abilities, and resilience. I help anxious and depressed students reach their pote...

WPT: Create a New Narrative

My name is Liz Witmer and I am a licensed clinical psychologist who works with children, adolescents, and emerging adults. I believe the language we use to describe ourselves, our lives, the world around us, and each other, matters. The words we use in our every day lives have the power to instill hope or to crush dreams. Therapy is a safe place where to examine the messages that we send to ourselves everyday that have an influence over our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Here at word-play-therapy I seek to help clients discover the narrative they have created for themselves. Next, we explore how they want to shift that narrative so that their personal stories inspire and empower them towards change. I try to support my clients striving to live and feel better, searching for meaning, and continually seeking growth.

It takes courage to start creating a new narrative for how you think about your life, the world, others, and the future. If you are seeking help with strategies for how to create that narrative, which could includes learning more about how to:

· manage your thoughts, feelings, and behavior patterns,

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201 S King Street
Leesburg, VA

Opening Hours

Thursday 8am - 1:30pm
Friday 8am - 1:30pm

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