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"It's not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves."

Sir Edmond Hillary


I have worked in the mental health field for over 10 years. I graduated from the University of Central Florida with my BA in Psychology and my MA in Counselor Education-Mental Health. I am currently licensed in the State of Mississippi as a Licensed Professional Counselor. I am also licensed in the State of Colorado and West Virginia as a Licensed Professional Counselor. I also hold a license in Utah as a Clinical Mental Health Counselor. I am a Certified Gottman Therapist and am also a Board Qualified Telemental Health Provider. I have previously worked in the state of Florida as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor. My past experience has been in a variety of settings including outpatient and residential.


I utilize many different evidence based practices such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, EMDR, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy to meet your needs. With couples, I utilize Gottman Method Couples Counseling. Gottman has over 30 years of research that shows it can not only predict divorce but also improve relationship satisfaction.

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Featured Interviews, Media and Blog Posts

Gaslighting in Relationships

“In Gottman Method couples therapy, the therapist will aim to seek out negative behaviors like contempt and defensiveness and work on using their antidotes of communicating your own feelings and needs, as well as accepting responsibility which would help someone who uses gaslighting in their relationship.”


See Kari's interview for AskMen here.


This Is Why You Always Cry When You Argue

“A few tears while you are speaking is pretty normal when you are having a conflict over something that is deeply meaningful to you but if it’s making you unable to even speak, and you’re gasping for air, you might want to look for ways you can alleviate that.”


See Kari's interview for Rewire here.


Talking to Your Partner about Sex When You Suffer from Chronic Pain

“Millions of people suffer from ailments, such as migraines, endometriosis, and fibromyalgia, that cause chronic pain. It can affect every area of their lives including their relationships. Sex in particular can be difficult if you or your loved one suffers from chronic pain. Common disorders like irritable bowel syndrome, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis not only upset the sexual experience due to the pain itself, but also the side effects from medication or a decreased libido also factor into the difficulty. ”


See Kari's post for the Gottman Blog here.


How to Talk to Your Partner About Where to Spend the Holidays

“Start the conversation with open-ended questions that can’t be answered with one word, said Kari Rusnak, a relationship therapist based in Mississippi. “Instead of, ‘Do you want to see your parents this year?’ ask, ‘Tell me how you feel about traveling for the holidays,’” Rusnak said.”


See Kari's interview for VICE here.


How to Navigate Social Media as a Couple

“A lot of couples have conflict when it comes to social media. There are great benefits to social media—connecting socially, sharing pictures with friends and family, finding a group of individuals with a shared interest, or even support groups for all types of things. However, if you aren’t careful about setting digital boundaries in your relationship, it can be a source of frustration between you.”


See Kari's post for the Gottman Blog here.


How Can I Tell if MY Relationship is Toxic?

“Searches about toxic relationships have been pretty popular this year. Staying at home more often and spending more time alone with our partners and family members may have attributed to this question. A lot of people question toxic relationships beyond their romantic relationships, questioning their friends and family too. Any relationship can be a toxic one and here are some ways you can tell.”


See Kari's post for the Gottman Blog here.


Exploring the Intersection of Financial Wellness and Mental Health with Kari Rusnak


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