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Karen E. Sherwood, LCSW-C

Being a therapist is a very important part of my life’s work. I am grateful for the opportunity to see my patients learn about themselves, work through painful moments, take new risks, and achieve successes.

I have 20 years of experience in the field, 14 years in private practice, and a continued dedication to post-graduate training. I received my Masters of Social Work (MSW) from The University of Maryland School of Social Work in 2001.

My early experiences at RICA-Rockville and The Pathways Schools impacted me greatly. It was during this initial, 6-year period of working with seriously emotionally disturbed middle school children and high school adolescents and their families, dealing with unimaginable personal experiences of loss, trauma, and /or abuse, which left them overwhelmed and at times suicidal that led me searching to find post-graduate training that would further equip me to help people significantly change their lives.

I began to pursue training in psychodynamic psychotherapy and view myself as a life-long student of this complex theory of mind. This training has given me a strong foundation. I’m skilled at listening to people’s problems in a specialized way that helps people gain insight and understanding in what’s going on for them at a deep and life changing emotional level.

In addition to my private practice, I enjoy being a part of helping professionals learn about psychodynamic psychotherapy. I am on the Steering Committee of the International Psychotherapy Institute (IPI) DC Metro and a National Faculty at the International Psychotherapy Institute (IPI) - National.

Theoretical Orientation

My theoretical orientation is psychodynamic/psychoanalytic psychotherapy. The psychodynamic approach stresses discussion of a patient’s thoughts, feelings, and perceptions in order to identify unwanted repeating patterns in life. It also focuses on making connections between our therapy relationship and your other relationships. For more information about this orientation, please read Jonathan Shedler's landmark article The Efficacy of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy or for the more popularized version of the article see Getting to Know Me. In addition to my training in psychodynamic psychotherapy, I also incorporate cognitive behavioral and other techniques when necessary to support the treatment.

Professional License

License Certified Social Worker - Clinical, LCSW-C in Maryland

Professional Affiliations

  • NASW - National Association of Social Workers
  • IPI - International Psychotherapy Institute
  • WSP - Washington School of Psychiatry

Post Graduate Training

International Psychotherapy Institute, 2005 - present

Advanced Psychotherapy Program, 2010-2013

Infant Observation Seminar, 2012

Psychoanalytic Couple Therapy, 2010-2012

Core Psychotherapy Program, 2007-2009

Psychotherapy Training Program, 2005-2007  

Washington School of Psychiatry, 2012 

 Supervision Trainging Program 

Baltimore Washington Center for Psychoanalysis, 2008 

 Child Psychotherapy Fellowship Program

Washington School of Psychiatry, 2004 

 Child and Adolescent Study Group

Universtiy of Maryland Baltimore, 2003

Certificate Program in Child and Adolescent Treatment

Faculty Positons

International Psychotherapy Institute, 2013-present

Co-Chair of the International Psychotherapy Institute, DC-Metro, 2011-2014

Karen E. Sherwood, LCSW-C, LLC

Adult, Adolescent, Couple, Family, and Marriage Counseling

847-E Quince Orchard Boulevard

Gaithersburg, MD 20878

Call: 301-938-3890


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