Today we’d like to introduce you to Samantha Heuwagen.
Samantha, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I work as a Marriage and Family Therapist specializing in Sex Therapy in downtown Alpharetta. Throughout my educational career, I discovered early on my passion for sex education and the power of the written word. When I’m not working with clients, I write about faraway places and try to change the world through fiction bridging mental health awareness and social justice together.
But why an activist turned blogger turned writer turned therapist? (Try to say that 3 times fast!)
After obtaining my Master’s in Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of South Florida, I decided to continue my education at Mercer University School of Medicine in Atlanta by getting my Marriage and Family Therapy degree and sex therapy certification to help individuals looking to explore their sexuality and help couples regain their magical spark. I am licensed by the state of Georgia, USA.
I became interested in the therapy field through my work as a sex educator at the University of South Florida. I enjoyed teaching, but quickly realized one on one conversations with students proved to be more powerful outside of the classroom. So, I began to look for a new direction in the field, thus beginning my love for therapy. I’ve always been passionate about helping others, but now I get to join those two worlds together and create the change I wish to see in the world.
As an author, I’ve written about the funny things that happen in life, along with tips and tricks to be your best version of you. I’ve now entered the fiction world and I’m proud to announce, my debut novel, Dawn Among the Stars, was released in May 2018 becoming a best seller. The follow-up, Fading Starlight, has been released – much to my fans’ delight – in June 2019. You can purchase both anywhere books are sold.
When I’m not working with clients, I spark discussion about mental health through lectures, workshops, social media, and writing. My goal is to spread mental health awareness across the United States and beyond.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Anything worth having takes hard work and determination. My journey towards licensure and publishing was a bumpy road, but I’m grateful for every twist and turn.
Obtaining my LMFT was a nightmare because sitting for the test was hard and the most nerve-racking thing I’ve ever done. 100 questions with little room for interpretation, to say it kept me up at night would be an understatement, but the fear of failure didn’t stop me. Instead, it drove me to study hard and practicing as much as I could to prepare. Most applicants have to take the test multiple times, yet I manage to pass the first time––much to my relief!
Publishing is another beast entirely. There are many roads to publication, yet the one most dream about is the traditional way which means finding a publisher that will publish your work and help you reach new readers. I’ve been extremely fortunate to find a small publisher that supports my desire to bring about social change (mental health awareness) and giving me the ability to write unique stories that entertain and educate. The Starless Series is my attempt at bridging together social justice and science fiction to help create change in regards to discussions surrounding mental health. I worked on this for almost 8 years before publishing and now have the world’s best readers who have fallen in love with the series as much as I have.
Samantha Heuwagen, LLC – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
The most important thing in my practice to make sure I am honoring and supporting my clients to the best of my ability – it shows in my work.
I follow the work of Virginia Satir but bring my sense of humor and zest for life into the therapy room with me. I deal with various issues in an open, honest, and educational way through a systemic approach meaning I look at a variety of factors and influences unique to a client’s life. This helps me create a boarder sense of what it’s like to walk in their shoes.
I’d like to think my clients and I have a good time in therapy, but when it’s time to face life’s challenges, we work hard together and tackle difficult issues as a team.
I’m also bilingual with fluency in both English and Spanish, so I’m lucky to work with different people in two languages––it enriches my practice in many ways. I love working with multicultural clients from around the world!
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I’ve been fortunate to have two: publishing my first book, Dawn Among the Stars, and obtaining my license as a marriage and family therapist. I’m so lucky to live out my dreams and I hope I can inspire others to follow their dreams as well.
- Individual, Couples, Family therapy: $150 for the intake and $125 for the following sessions.
- Address: 286 South Main Street Suite 100
Alpharetta, GA 30009 GA
- Website: SamanthaHeuwagen.com
- Phone: 248.660.0487
- Email: Info@SamanthaHeuwagen.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/samantha_heuwagen/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/609493369396318/about/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/Sheuwagen
- Other: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbS62C3HvuRPWIS_bIOJ0qg?view_as=subscriber
Photos by Lola Scott, lolascottart.com; and Michael C. Heath