Today we’d like to introduce you to Sable Gonyea.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I was always interested in helping others, even as a little girl. I had a heart for others and in my teenage years even befriended some people that my parents found less than desirable. Growing up, I was always interested in people’s stories and lives and was very sensitive to the needs of others. This sometimes (a lot of the time) made for difficult adolescence.
When the time came to choose a college, I looked into schools that had good psychology programs and were south of Chicago (where I grew up). I was also a competitive horseback rider and owned my own horse. My parents told me I couldn’t bring my horse with me to college, so being tenacious (read: rebellious) and independent spirit I was, I shifted gears and found a college where I could major in Equestrian Science and bring my horse with me to school. I enrolled in William Woods University in Fulton, MO as an Equestrian Science major and within a couple of months switched my major to Social Work (and kept my horse with me!). Going to WWU was the best decision. I was introduced to philanthropy work through my college sorority, Alpha Chi Omega, and became very involved in supporting the fight against domestic violence. I had amazing Social Work professors in undergraduate and graduate school. They helped fuel the fire in me to dedicate my life to helping others. Looking back, it was my professors who ignited my passions in this field to work in the crisis and trauma field, though I don’t think I realized it at the time.
After graduate school, I went to work in community mental health where I was quickly promoted to management of a crisis team. This team, Victim Services, worked with several police agencies outside of Chicago. We responded on the scene, alongside first responders, to traumatic events in the community and supported the victims following the trauma. I completely thrived in this role despite the intense nature of the job. I loved the opportunity of being there for people on the worst days of their lives and hopefully providing a little support and relief through their pain. I loved supporting first responders and helping educate the community on mental health and wellness. There was a lot of personal reward and fulfillment in this role but I knew it wasn’t something I could do forever especially with goals to raise a family.
My husband and I moved to the Dallas area in June of 2014 and I decided to pursue a job that was a little more predictable in hours and a little less intense than what I had been doing in Chicago. I was lucky enough to land at a local middle school as a prevention and intervention counselor, and while the job was not my perfect fit, but it was right where I needed to be when my husband and I had our own traumatic event. In August of 2015, our firstborn daughter was stillborn due to Preeclampsia and HELLP syndrome. We were devastated and thankfully I was in a job where my coworkers were incredibly supportive while I took the time to grieve. It was not easy for me to become the one needing crisis and trauma help. I sought counseling for myself and hit roadblocks in finding someone with experience in pregnancy and infant loss that took my insurance or was affordable, and so I started seeing someone who did take my insurance but wasn’t experienced in the field of pregnancy and infant loss. I also found a support group in the area, M.E.N.D., and started my own journey toward health and recovery. When the time came to re-sign my contract at the school district I decided I needed to take a leap to find something that was as personally and professionally fulfilling as Victim Services was for me. I had a newfound appreciation and understanding of crisis and trauma and used that to jump into private practice with a group.
When that group practice closed in the fall of 2018, I decided to open my own practice, Village Counseling LLC. I am so lucky to be able to work with women and families who have suffered the loss of a child. I am proud to take most major insurances so that families grieving this terrible loss don’t have to worry about high out of pocket costs to get the help they need. When tragedy strikes, one of the most healing things is to find meaning in the experience. I will never say I’m “glad” that we lost our firstborn daughter, but I have found meaning in her death with the opportunity to help others with increased compassion and understanding.
I also work with a lot of teenagers. I provide Dialectical Behavior Therapy inspired treatment, along with several other models of treatment, to help my clients find balance in their emotions and relationships. I love working with teenagers and young adults to build a healthier set of coping skills. I love teaching them ways to handle emotions that aren’t so destructive to themselves or their relationships and seeing that “lightbulb moment” when those new skills work. I have the coolest job in the world getting to help my clients build their life worth living and I think my crisis and trauma background lends itself well to working with the emotional chaos and intensity and teenagers often feel.
Has it been a smooth road?
Oh gosh, no! But what road is? I’ve experienced a lot of self-doubts. “Am I really helping people?” “Is this the field for me?” I’m human and I sometimes struggle with distancing myself from the lives of my clients. I beat myself up if a client is not doing well and this can lead to compassion fatigue and signs of burnout. Luckily I have a really strong support system that helps me manage that most of the time!
We’d love to hear more about what you do.
Village Counseling LLC opened October 1, 2018! I am so proud to have opened my own practice as it has really pushed me out of my comfort zone of a provider into that of a businesswoman.
I am a Social Worker and so I have generalist education and experience, but over the years I have honed in on my specialties of working with trauma and crisis, especially pregnancy and infant loss and working with teenagers. I am a Dialectical Behavior Therapy inspired therapist and I take most major insurances which set me apart from a lot of providers in the area.
I have a “village mentality” in working with my clients. I promote wellness in their whole “system:” family, work, school, church, relationships, physical health, etc. I believe strongly that the relationship between the client and the therapist is the most crucial part of a client’s success in therapy and I strive to form a strong therapeutic relationship with my clients first and foremost.
I also have a therapy dog in training, Mae, who will be joining Village Counseling in the next several months.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
YES! Flower Mound is such a great location because it is family oriented and close to DFW and most major highways. I love this area. There’s a lot to see and do and offers people the chance to get involved in their community and activities.
- Address: 2604 Long Prairie Road
Flower Mound, TX 75022
- Website: www.villagecounselingtx.com
- Phone: (972) 853-8955
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @villagecounselingllc
- Facebook: @villagecounselingtx
Indigo Bird Photography