Lynne Santiago, PhD, LMHC

Lynne Santiago, PhD, LMHC

2 employees
20 years in business

About this pro

Serving the Tampa Bay Area since 2003, my clients are couples seeking to rebuild their relationships, most often due to communication breakdowns, or after a relationship trauma (such as emotional and/or sexual infidelity, harm from sex addiction).

I am an experienced therapist, in the counseling field since 1993.  I was awarded Mental Health Counselor of the year for 2015-2016.  I am trained in trauma treatment; Emotional-Focused therapy for couples in crisis; Military, Veterans and family members in transition; combat trauma; Sex Therapy; and E-Therapy.

I feel so fortunate that I LOVE what I do.  Though being a therapist for so many years, it has not grown stale, tireing, or bored.  I look froward to going into the office everyday, ready to help people improve the quality of their relationships and the quality of their lives. 

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Tampa, FL 33603
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What is your typical process for working with a new customer?

We will meet for one to three 90 minute sessions.  We take the time to discuss your challenges, define what you hope to achieve in therapy, and collaboratively design an action plan. I do not use a ‘cookie cutter’ approach. Every couple is different Your needs are unique to your situation.  

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

Please visit my website to see all my credentials, trainings, and experience.  

  • 25 years counseling experience
  • Florida Licensed Mental Health Counselor since 1999 (MH 5801)
  • PhD in Psychology; Capella University
  • MS in Mental Health Counseling, Nova Southeastern University
  • BA in Psychology; Saint Leo University
  • Clinical Sexology Certificate; The American Academy of  Clinical Sexology
  • Qualified Supervisor for FL Registered Mental Health Counselor Interns
  • Researcher in Veteran Suicide
  • Faculty Member at Troy University
  • Former Faculty Member at University of South Florida
  • Trainer & Presenter at the State and National Level

Do you have a standard pricing system for your services? If so, please share the details here.

Fee’s run from $85 - $130.  Your first 1-3 sessions will be for $90 minutes at the $130.00 rate.  You can ‘buy’ a package of four sessions and save $ if paid for in advance.

If you are a veteran there are other options available.  

How did you get started in this business?

My love for psychology and counseling began when I was just a child.  My family participated in family therapy for a couple of years to help us all cope with my disabled younger brother.

I also lived literally sandwiched between two large mental health state institutions.  My town was full of people who either worked at the hospital or, at one time, was a patient there.  I was struck, curious, and amazed when observing people with severe mental illness walking down Main Street.  I wondered what was going on in their minds, their brains, that caused the bizarre behaviors that they were doing.

So that is the ‘back story’.  You can find more on my website.

What types of customers have you worked with?

* Terminally ill

*  people with chronic/severe mental illness

*  Adult survivors of childhood abuse (sexual, physical, emotional)

*  People challenged with sex addiction

*  Individuals/couples with desire & arousal challenges

*  Veterans in crisis

*  Couples struggling with communication break-downs, relationship trauma, and sexual intimacy proplem.

I have been a counselor for over 25 years so my clientele has evolved.  I started as a Hospice grief counselor.  Spent some time working in a community agency helping people with severe and/or chronic mental illness.  I had a growing interest in trauma, so started to see adults survivors of childhood abuse (sexual, physical, emotional) who had complex Post Trauma Stress Disorder (PTSD).  

I was hired by a distinguist sex therapist in Tampa, earned my sex therapy certificate, and started to help people with sex addictions, individuals/couples withdesire & arousal problems.

After 9/11, and seeing how many suicides were happening in the active duty service members, I shifted my focus on working with veterans in crisis.  As Army veteran myself, I believed it was my responsibility.  I helped develop the Suicide Prevention Program at James A. Haley Veterans Hospital.  

Through this I began to see more and more couples, many who or military/veterans.  

What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a pro in your area of expertise?

Understand there are different therapy models and approaches.  Not all therapy is the same, not all therapist do the same thing.  Also, there is a difference between Mental Health Counselors, Social Workers, Clinical Psychologists, and Psychiatrists.

If you are looking for a brief, targeted, focus to change a specific behavior (with little discussion about your past)  — like anger management, stress management, anxiety, look for a counselor who specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and/or Solution-Focused Brief Therapy.

If you are wanting to ‘go deeper’, understand the root your beliefs and behaviors, want to work out some past experiences, then look for a therapist who has an understanding of attachment theory therapy, insight-oriented/narrative approach, and/or psychodynamic approach. 

What questions should customers think through before talking to pros about their needs?

Questions to ask your potential therapist:

What psychological persepive do you have?

What psychotherapy approach do you take?

How many years experience do you have?  When did you get licensed?