Merrisa Dawn Santos (She/Her)

Licensed Professional Counselor, MA, LPC, NCC, CCTMHP, CCTP
 therapist: Merrisa Dawn Santos,
Online in Illinois
In the intricate tapestry of our lives, the pursuit of happiness, safety, and love is a universal quest. Yet, for many, the journey toward emotional wellness is fraught with challenges beyond their control. Trauma, familial history, and the burdens of life can cast shadows that obscure life's inherent beauty. I believe that each individual deserves to uncover, rediscover, and reclaim life's joy and purpose. As a compassionate and dedicated psychoanalytical therapist, I aim to guide you through this transformative process with warmth and understanding. Through welcoming and conversational counseling services, I aim to create a space where you can explore the intricate connections between your mind, body, and spirit. This holistic approach seeks to assist you in reconnecting with your higher purpose, allowing you to navigate life unburdened by emotional pain.

Client Focus

Session Format: Couple, Family, Individual sessions.
Age Specialty: Adult, Senior, Young Adult
Demographic Expertise: Asian, Black / African American, Buddhist, Hindu, Hispanic / Latino, LGBTQ+, Men, Military / Veterans, Pacific Islander, Women clients.
Languages: English/Spanish

Treatment Approach

  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
  • Art Therapy
  • Behavioral
  • Biopsychosocial
  • Brainspotting
  • Cognitive Behavioral (CBT)
  • Compassion Focus Therapy
  • Dialectical Behavior (DBT)
  • Eclectic
  • EMDR
  • Emotionally Focused (EFT)
  • Existential/Humanistic
  • Experiential
  • Family Systems
  • Feminist
  • Gestalt
  • Imago Relationship Therapy
  • Integrative
  • Internal Family Systems
  • Jungian
  • Multicultural
  • Music Therapy
  • Narrative
  • Neuropsychology
  • Object Relations
  • Person-Centered
  • Play Therapy
  • Psychoanalytic
  • Psychodrama
  • Psychodynamic
  • Psychoeducational
  • Reality
  • Relational Psychotherapy
  • Schema Therapy
  • Self Psychology
  • Social Constructionist
  • Social Learning
  • Solution-Focused Brief Therapy
  • Transactional Analysis
  • Transpersonal
Approach Description: I became a psychoanalytical therapist because I believe in the transformative power of self-awareness and understanding. Exploring the depths of the unconscious mind and uncovering the roots of one's thoughts and behaviors can lead to lasting change and emotional well-being. I chose psychoanalysis as my therapeutic approach because it offers a unique framework for delving into the complexities of the human psyche, providing individuals with a profound opportunity for self-discovery and healing. Psychoanalysis, with its emphasis on the unconscious mind, allows me to work with patients in a way that goes beyond surface-level symptoms, addressing the underlying causes of emotional struggles. I am passionate about creating a space where individuals can explore their thoughts, feelings, and past experiences in a deep and meaningful way, fostering insight and facilitating personal growth.

Education & Credentials

Merrisa Dawn Santos MA, LPC, NCC, CCTMHP, CCTP
  • Female
  • License # 178.018515
  • Licensed in IL
  • Practicing Since 2021


  • Average Session Fee $135 to $150
  • Accepts Insurance
  • Aetna, Anthem / Elevance, BlueCross BlueShield, Cigna, Evernorth, HealthLink, Optum, TRICARE, UMR, United Healthcare UHC | UBH, VA Community Care Network (CCN), Out of Network

Merrisa Dawn Santos Practice Details

Therapy Sessions
  • Available Online for residents of Illinois
  • Online Therapy Details: SimplePractice Platform. An alternative option: Zoom
Merrisa Dawn Santos Practice Description
In embracing a holistic approach to counseling, my patients can expect a therapeutic journey that transcends traditional boundaries, addressing the interconnected facets of mind, body, and spirit. Throughout our work together, individuals often experience a profound shift in their understanding of self and their place in the world. One notable aspect of my approach is the emphasis on fostering self-awareness and mindfulness. Patients frequently describe a heightened sense of consciousness about their thoughts, emotions, and behavioral patterns. Together, we explore these elements with curiosity and without judgment, paving the way for a deeper understanding of personal strengths and areas for growth. The integration of diverse therapeutic modalities is another hallmark of my practice. I draw from various approaches, tailoring our sessions to meet the unique needs and preferences of each individual. This dynamic and flexible approach ensures that our work together is a truly personalized and effective exploration of your emotional landscape. Furthermore, I prioritize creating a collaborative and inclusive therapeutic environment. Patients frequently share feelings of comfort and safety, knowing that our sessions are spaces free from judgment. This collaborative spirit extends to the bilingual aspect of my practice, ensuring that language is not a barrier to effective communication and understanding.

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