Vanessa Benedict,LMFT

Vanessa Benedict,LMFT

Telehealth Available
Professions: Marriage & Family Therapist
License Status: I'm a licensed professional.
Primary Credential: LMFT - 8774352-3902
Billing and Insurance:

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Fees: Free 30 minute consultation.
175 per hour.
Free Initial Consultation
Weekend Availability
Evening Availability


150 s. 600 e.
Salt Lake City, Utah 84102

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My Approach to Helping

The Trauma Alchemist
Alchemy: The act of transmuting lead into gold.
If the weight of your trauma is holding you down like lead; come discover the magic of Trauma Alchemy or finding the Golden Shadow. Did you know that in all the parts of you that have been repressed due to shame, dysfunctional family systems, not fitting in etc., those are the parts of you that are the most tender, they hold the creativity, wonder and awe. This is the you that has a zest for life and lives with authenticity and passion. Trauma Alchemy is the act of reclaiming those parts of you that have been subjugated, and in transmuting the lead into gold, you see the trauma through a new lens. The very things that have been holding you down, transform into the strength to lift you up, like the Phoenix rising from the ashes. There is more to your story and you know it!

NarcisticEmotional Abuse:
Sometimes you need an expert. Especially when it comes to recovery from Narcissistic, and other forms of emotional abuse. If you or someone you love is suffering from abuse, don't go it alone.

Drawing from a deep well of education and my own personal experience healing from Narcissistic abuse; I use a 3 pronged approach to help you move from surviving to thriving. 1. Psycho education so you can finally understand what happened, why, and how to identify red flags so you can prevent it moving forward. 2. Internal Family Systems, so you can heal the attachment wounding that attracted this type of relationship in the first place. 3. EMDR, to really resolve the trauma, heal from the projections of abuse, and recover the aspects of self that were wounded by the abuser or perhaps still attached to them.

CouplesConscious Relating:
Another passion of mine is helping couples have the relationship that matches the love that is in there hearts. One of the greatest griefs I see is when two people who love each other can't seem to make it work. The sad truth behind this is that none of us were taught how to be in relationship. Most unions break down because of a lack of skill, not lack of love. That's actually the good news because skills and a new way of relating can be taught. It brings me great joy to see couples who truly love each other have the relationship that accurately reflects what is in their hearts.

Autism Spectrum:
A subset specialty of mine is Autism Spectrum in relationships. Spectrum disorder is often confused with Narcissistic abuse in relationships. Meaning, that Spectrum folks unknowingly display behaviors that feel like abuse. This is unintentional and comes from a very different place than Narcissistic abuse, but can feel identical. The main difference is that Spectrum partners don't know they are doing it and are often horrified to find their loved one has experienced so much pain at their hands. To complicated matters, most Spectrum adults are not aware that they are on the Spectrum. Awareness and diagnosis of this are just now coming to light.

It is very treatable, however. If you suspect that you are on the Spectrum, or that your partner is on the Spectrum don't throw in the towel right away. I've had amazing success at treating this in relationships. See the YouTube link where Dr. Ramani discusses the difference between Narcissism and Autism.

Death and Bereavement:
I have a unique perspective on death. My best friend crossed over and came back. I love listening to her talk about her experience with death because it is freeing from fear. There is more love and joy in the process than we could ever have imagined. If you are struggling with grief from losing a loved one, or are in the process of a loved one crossing over, you may benefit from hearing the experience of someone who has walked the path and returned. I know it helped me find peace with death.

Finally, I love working with Trauma. I know that sounds like a funny statement. But it's easy to love the work when I see people recover. Time and time again, I get the honor of witnessing people overcome trauma that seems insurmountable. It is a joy to watch the transformation as people heal and create a even more beautiful life than the one they had before the trauma began.

Call today to begin your journey of healing and recovery.

More Info About My Practice

Medicine Offerings
Kanna: I love Kanna for trauma work! Let me geek out for a moment on trauma and the nervous system and the benefits of Kanna to create space for us to look at some really hard things. Our nervous system is wired in such a way that its goal is to keep us from overloading the system. That is why we disassociate. Dissociation, makes it hard to heal, and integrate the past. It prevents us from actually looking at the trauma thus keeping it largely in the subconscious, preventing us from having the corrective experience that allows us to heal the nervous system, to accept what happened and release it. Kanna, with its incredibly gentle touch heals both the body and the nervous system. Because it relaxes the nervous system, it allows far deeper access to the subconscious, but in a way that the nervous system registers as safe, this in turn allows the corrective experience that is the special sauce that creates true healing. And it’s completely legal! 😊

Kanna for Couples work: Kanna is excellent for couples work for the same reason it’s so beneficial for trauma work; it soothes the nervous system. The reason it’s so hard to bring up difficult topics with our loved ones is because our nervous system goes in to fight, flight or freeze. Kanna allows us to bypass that, or at least turn it down, creating the potential for far greater connection and growth. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a heart opener too.

Cacao: The royal heart opener. Another gentle and so very sacred heart opener. With all the feel-good chemicals coursing through your brain and your body, it’s hard not to be relaxed and more open with your partner.

Cacao + Kanna = My personal favorite.

Sacred Space:
Sometimes you just need sacred space held. I offer 5 session packages, a pre-session to establish what we will be working on, a 3-hour Kanna + Cacao sit and a post-integration session.

*Please be aware of potential pharmacological contraindications.

How My Own Struggles Made Me a Better Therapist

Safety proceeds healing. Therapy is an inherently vulnerable process. It involves looking at your most painful and shameful experiences. You need a space where you can feel safe and cared for while doing this courageous work.

I've had to walk this very road myself. The struggle is real and you don't have to go it alone. I know what I teach works, because I've used it myself to recover from life's challenges.

My promise is to hold you with compassion and respect in this process. I've very much been there, which is what makes me such a good guide to help you through your own trials and tribulations.

You will be met with authentic kindness and care as we walk the road of healing together.

Ages I Work With

  • Teens
  • Adults
  • Elders


  • English

Groups I Work With

    Survivors of Narcissistic abuse
    Survivors of abuse
    Autism Spectrum Adults
    Autism Spectrum Couples
    Trauma survivors

Industries & Communities Served

  • First Responder/Medical Professionals
  • LGBTQ+
  • Military/Law Enforcement
  • Self-Employed and Freelance Professionals

Client Concerns I Treat

  • Abandonment
  • Abuse / Abuse Survivor Issues
  • Adjusting to Change / Life Transitions
  • Anxiety
  • Attachment Issues
  • Autism Spectrum
  • Breakup
  • Child and/or Adolescent Issues
  • Codependency / Dependency
  • Communication Problems
  • Depression
  • Developmental Disorders (Autism, Aspergers, etc.)
  • Divorce / Divorce Adjustment
  • Emotional Abuse
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Emotional Overwhelm
  • Emptiness
  • Family of Origin Issues
  • Family Problems
  • Fear
  • First Responders
  • Forgiveness
  • Grief, Loss, and Bereavement
  • Helplessness / Victimhood
  • Identity Issues
  • Inadequacy
  • Incest
  • Individuation
  • Infidelity / Affair Recovery
  • Irritability
  • Isolation
  • LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) Issues
  • Life Purpose / Meaning / Inner-Guidance
  • Midlife Crisis / Midlife Transition
  • Mood Swings / Mood Disturbance
  • Multicultural Concerns
  • Narcissism
  • Parenting
  • Physical Abuse
  • Posttraumatic Stress / Trauma
  • Pre-Marital Counseling
  • Psychedelic and Altered State Integration Therapy
  • Rejection
  • Relationships and Marriage
  • Religious Issues
  • Self-Actualization
  • Self-Care
  • Self-Compassion
  • Self-Confidence
  • Self-Criticism
  • Self-Doubt
  • Self-Esteem
  • Self-Love
  • Sensitivity to Criticism
  • Sexual Assault / Abuse
  • Shame
  • Social Anxiety / Phobia
  • Spirituality
  • Stress
  • Trust Issues
  • Values Clarification
  • Worthlessness
  • Young Adult Issues

Types of Therapy

  • Attachment-Based Family Therapy (ABFT)
  • Body-Mind Psychotherapy
  • Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT)
  • Conflict Resolution Therapy
  • Emotion Focused Couples Therapy
  • Emotion Focused Therapy
  • Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy
  • Energy Psychology
  • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR)
  • Family Attachment Narrative Therapy
  • Family Systems Therapy
  • Gottman Method
  • Internal Family Systems (IFS)
  • Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT)
  • Nonviolent Communication (NVC)
  • Somatic Experiencing (SE)
  • Somatic Psychotherapy
  • Soul-Centered Psychiatry
  • Spiritual Counselling
  • Structural Family Therapy
  • Systems Theory /Therapy

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