Julie Minoff,LCSW

Julie Minoff,LCSW

Featured
Telehealth Available
Professions: Clinical Social Worker
License Status: I'm a licensed professional.
Primary Credential: LCSW - LCS17278
Billing and Insurance:

I don't currently accept insurance, but I can provide documentation if clients wish to submit to an insurance company for "out of network" benefit coverage

Free Initial Consultation
Evening Availability

Offices

126 Church St.
San Francisco, California 94114

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My Approach to Helping

I specialize in psychotherapy for grief loss and coaching for stepparents.

Many people think of grief in very narrow terms: Sadness after an important person passes. That is a valid reason most people seek grief therapy. But grieving can also come from lost relationships or pets. In addition to sadness, emotions can include anger, irritability, numbness, or fear. These are all normal and together we can work through your myriad of reactions and move forward. Time alone does not heal all wounds. Nor does just keeping busy. Many people choose to “Give you space” when that just leaves you feeling alone. Working through healing is an active process. When you have experienced a death, your relationship has changed through physical separation, but you continue to carry those you have lost inside of you. Their memory continues to change your way of interacting with or being in the world. This is especially important to remember if your loss occurred long ago – you may still be facing the invisible effects of grief in your fear of intimacy, in your insistence on serving as a caretaker, refusal to count on anyone or in many other ways. Regardless of when your loss took place, bottling up emotions only allows them to grow. When you try to go around grief instead of through it, it sets up house in your unconscious mind. That’s when the monkey – ¬your unconscious mind ¬– gets to drive, and you don’t make conscious choices about where you are going.

Some losses or huge changes make us question who we are now. For example, “What does it mean for me now that my parentsiblingfriendpet is gone?” “How do I deal with my relationship with my partnerspouse ending?” Maybe you lost someone to suicide and blame yourself or feel rage. Maybe you feel you must hide from your feelings and hide those photos, letters, keepsakes from your own eyes.

In our work you will have the time and space to be open and honest about any emotions you have. I would never judge you for anything you have done or said prior to or after your loved one’s death or your break-up. Grief counseling is an entirely safe, supportive space for you to explore your every emotion and question, no matter how large or existential they may be. It's good to share your struggles with moving on with mundane tasks and handling future events too.

All your feelings are understandable and acceptable, even if they include anger or guilt! It isn't actually healthy for us to hide from our grief though. I can help you get you through it and even find meaning or growth in the process. During grief counseling sessions, I can teach you tools to identify and cope with your sadness and other emotions. As you are ready, we will unpack memories of your loved one and piece things together to see events in a new perspective. You can begin to grow comfortable with positive memories while you prevent negative ones from having undue power over your thoughts and actions. And, you can let go of guilt and fear so you can begin to reconnect with your passions, be present in your relationships, and find happiness and hope in your life again. Some people choose to stay on and get help for the stress in the life they live now. I have experience with lots of issues outside of grief and loss.

My style is to be very direct. I listen, but I don’t just let you talk and then ask you how that makes you feel. You and I are collaborators, taking a journey together. I use humor when it's helpful. I treat you as an individual and any helpful exercises I may give you will be customized to your needs. I don't have a limit as to how long we continue to meet; that will be up to you and we will discuss it together.

The best way to contact me is by text at (650) 269-1688 so we can schedule a FREE phone consult. The second best way is to leave me a voicemail at the number. Scroll down for information about stepparent coaching.

More Info About My Practice

Stepparent Coaching

Many people find themselves falling in love with someone who already has children and are unsure about what their responsibility is to both the children and their partner. Sometimes kids can be really hurtful. They will test you in a myriad of ways. Your influence may be far more significant than you think but it will be different from that of their parents. Sometimes stepparents find themselves wedged between their spouse and the other parent. New stepparents need not only support, but guidance, usually customized for their unique situation. Experienced stepparents need support to deal with stepchildren as they grow.

I have expertise helping stepparents design their roles and establish a model that works for the entire family. And let’s not forget about you. What sort of support do you need to ask for from your partner?

I see most patients on video. I do keep an office in San Francisco (Duboce Triangle) on Thursdays for patients who want to be seen in person.

Had a Negative Therapy Experience?

Please let me know! Any information about previous therapy can be helpful to helping and understanding you now. If I can learn from someone else's mistakes, I'm glad to do it. I also want to be sensitive to any additional trust issues you may be experiencing because of having had a negative experience in the past. It's not always easy to find a good match and if I'm not one for you, I'm happy to help to find someone who is a better one.

How My Own Struggles Made Me a Better Therapist

I personally have lost a lot of people and pets. I sought out my own support. I really believe in this stuff. I have felt all of the feelings I have written about here. I know it's okay to still miss those I have lost. It doesn't mean I can't have a fulfilling life. My experiences and those of my patients have really highlighted for me how awful our society is at supporting people in grief and how uncomfortable people are discussing it.

As for stepparenting, my passion comes from two places. The first is that I had a terrific stepmother. Though I know it was a struggle, she managed to design her role in our lives in a way that turned out to be a wonderful gift. Second, earlier in my career when I worked with families, I saw quite a few blended families and I worked with children who had stepparents. I could see how difficult it was for stepparents to figure out how they fit in that was different than the parents.

Ages I Work With

  • Teens
  • Adults
  • Elders

Languages

  • English

Groups I Work With

    I do therapy with individuals of all ages who are experiencing the effects of loss whether it be via death or divorce and other huge life changing events.

    Separately, I do coaching and support with stepparents.

Client Concerns I Treat

  • Adjusting to Change / Life Transitions
  • Divorce / Divorce Adjustment
  • Grief, Loss, and Bereavement
  • LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) Issues
  • Life Purpose / Meaning / Inner-Guidance
  • Midlife Crisis / Midlife Transition
  • Parenting

Types of Therapy

  • Coaching
  • Depth Therapy
  • Existential Psychotherapy
  • Humanistic Psychology (humanism)
  • Psychodynamic

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