Heather Johnston, LCSW, RPT-S
I completed my Bachelor's Degree with a dual major in Psychology and Sociology from Central Michigan University in 1997. I then went on to complete my Master's Degree in Social Work from Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, MI. I moved to Fort Wayne in 2000 and I began working with children and teens. I had experience working with adults but discovered my passion was working with children and teens. I have focused primarily on treating this population since 2001.
I have experience working in a variety of settings. I have worked in a residential treatment center for teenage girls, I then worked for a therapeutic foster care agency for six years. In August of 2006, I joined a private practice as a child and family therapist and began specializing in play therapy. In 2015, I set out on my own in private practice.
I am a member of the Association for Play Therapy. In 2015, I received the highest designation offered through the association, Registered Play Therapy Supervisor. My training is constant and I believe in learning from the best to provide the best care.
I recently completed Level I Theraplay® training through the Theraplay®Institute in Chicago, IL. Theraplay® is a child and family based therapy for building and enhancing attachment, self-esteem, trust in others, and joyful engagement.
Treatment is tailored to each individual client and his/her family. I work with children ages 3-18.
I have also recently served as an adjunct professor in the Indiana University School of Social Work Program. While there, I taught students about clinical social work at the graduate level.
In August of 2006, I joined a private group practice as a child and family therapist and began specializing in play therapy. I worked there for over nine years before branching off and starting my own practice where I have been practicing since 2015.
continue to enjoy working with children and I am constantly furthering
my education and training to best serve the kids and families that I
see. Treatment is tailored to each individual client and his or her family.
I have worked with a wide range of childhood difficulties including:
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
- Adjustment Difficulties
- Divorce Adjustment
- Grief and Loss
- Child abuse and/or Neglect
- Sexual Abuse
- Foster Care and Adoption
- Selective Mutism
- Gender Identity and Sexuality Issues
Play area/waiting room.
A special note for families dealing with divorce:
I have a great deal of experience working with children whose parents are in the process of or have completed a divorce. While I understand that this can be a highly difficult time for the entire family, children are especially vulnerable during this time. Counseling can help them cope with the many changes that are occurring in their lives. Parents are often looking for guidance as to how to best help their children cope. This is an ideal time to seek counseling. My role in this process is to help children adjust and to assist parents with the changes that are occurring.
Often times issues of custody and visitation arise. My role is as a mental health professional seeking to alleviate symptoms as they occur. I do not do custody evaluations. I would be happy to make a referral to another provider in your area who can assist in the process of custody evaluations if that is what you are looking for.