Matt Whitt

Matt Whitt, MSW, LCSWA, PhD

Outpatient Psychotherapist in Durham

I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker Associate who offers client-centered, collaborative and non-judgmental therapy in Durham. After a decade of teaching in colleges and universities, I transitioned to therapy to help others grapple with difficult experiences, strengthen their relationships, and live their values. I earned my MSW at UNC-Chapel Hill, my Philosophy PhD from Vanderbilt, and my BA from William and Mary.

No one knows what you are going through better than you. In session, I listen carefully and center you as the expert on your own experience. I lead with empathy and validation, ask questions designed to generate insight, and help you balance the desire for change with frank self-acceptance. My fundamental assumption is that whatever you’re dealing with, it’s not all “in your head.”

As a therapist, I enjoy helping clients navigate major life transitions, respond to environmental stressors, and deal with loss. I have a special interest in situations where clients have been given the message that their emotions “don’t count” or that they should have already “gotten over” a difficulty. This includes prolonged or disenfranchised grief (grief that others tend to see as insignificant or outweighed by silver linings), ambiguous loss (when a loved one is gone-but-still-there, as in cases of dementia or addiction), and whenever social stressors pile up to the point that they begin to feel “normal” (as in over-work, caregiver burnout or complex trauma). During the COVID pandemic and its aftereffects, I am especially honored to do this work with clients.

My therapeutic approach draws on Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI) and grief counseling. When relevant, I also lean on my experience helping college students grapple with philosophical questions, supporting the caregivers of persons living with dementia, and teaching in men’s prisons.

I am LGBTQIA+ affirming and welcoming to clients of all cultural, racial and religious backgrounds. I enjoy working with adults, and I have found that both younger (age 20-35) and older adults (65+) tend to prioritize the issues that I am most passionate about. I believe that client-therapist fit is vital, so if we discover that we are not a good pair after a few sessions, I am happy to help you with referrals. I currently see clients Tuesdays through Fridays in Durham, and accept insurance and self-pay clients. Please see our FAQ page for fee and insurance information.

I look forward to working with you!

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email | matt@threeoaksbehavioralhealth.com