Erica Carpenter, Ph.D., LMFT
Dr. Erica Carpenter is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, specifically trained in working with couple and family relationships. Erica earned her B.S. in Psychology and minor in Business Administration from Texas A&M University in 2011. She then received her Master’s of Science degree in Family Therapy from Texas Woman’s University in 2014 and received her Ph.D. in Family Therapy from Texas Woman’s University in December 2017. She is also an AAMFT Approved Supervisor and Clinical Fellow member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.
Erica has conducted research on adult only children and their experiences in adult romantic relationships, as well as conducted her dissertation research on the mental and physical health effects on adult children who are caregiving for a parent. Her dissertation research has been published in the Journal of Couple & Relationship Therapy, and she contributed two chapters to The Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy (2020). Erica has taught both undergraduate and master's level courses in the areas of Family Sciences and Family Therapy, and is currently adjunct faculty at Texas Woman's University teaching master's level courses. Erica also served as the Interim Clinic Director for the Texas Woman's University Counseling & Family Therapy Clinic from May-October 2018.
Erica's Approach to Therapy
Erica enjoys working with couples, families, and individuals from a collaborative, strengths-based approach. Her primary aim is to help clients build positive relationships, finding personal growth and learning how to be their authentic selves in the process. She views her clients as the experts in their own lives, and views the therapy process as a collaborative experience where goals are created by the therapist and client together. Ultimately, Erica sees her role as walking alongside her clients in their journey towards evolution and growth.
Erica uses an experiential approach to therapy, meaning that she operates under the assumption that all humans are capable of making change and already have strengths to help them get there - her job is to help you discover these strengths and learn how to apply them. In addition, she sees the experience that takes place during session as being where the real change happens, and therefore, she works to create a safe, open environment during her meetings with clients. Erica also believes that many of us have trouble expressing our true, authentic, creative selves for various reasons, but that once we feel safe to do so, we thrive both individually and within our relationships. She aims to create a safe space in session for her clients to discover and explore this authentic self.
Erica's specific area of interest is working with couples. When working with them, she sees her role as helping to facilitate an experience of safety and acceptance within session with a focus on enhancing the couple's bond, practicing effective communication skills, and learning how to set healthy boundaries both around and within the relationship. Erica also helps partners explore their authentic selves and learn how to be these selves within their relationship. She has completed the Level 1 Clinical Training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy, and incorporates elements of the Gottman Method into her work with couples.