Let’s get to know each other!
I’m Rebecca Horner, LCSW. I am a therapist, a parent, and a proud graduate of UNC Chapel Hill. I provide therapy for adults in Charlotte as well as all across North Carolina via online therapy.
I created this page to help you learn about me, my credentials, and my background in mental health. If you’d like to learn more, let’s connect! Contact me today to get started.
I attended UNC Chapel Hill for both my undergraduate and graduate degrees. I earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in American Studies, with a minor in African American Studies, in 2002. I earned a Masters in Social Work, with a concentration in Children and Families in 2004.
After years of further study and supervision I earned my License in Clinical Social Work (LCSW) in 2008, qualifying me to provide mental health therapy to individuals and families (NC License # C005896). I spent much of my career offering clinical social work services in an intensive care hospital setting to adults during a time of crisis and/or uncertainty in their lives. I am happy to now offer the same level of psychological care and support in a more comfortable, calm, safe environment.
More recently I have participated in more than 200 hours of intense training and supervision in a cutting-edge, highly effective mental health treatment method called Somatic Experiencing.
While working in a hospital system, I created and implemented multiple programs in an effort to decrease the negative psychological impact providing or receiving medical care can cause in medical staff, patients, and families.
My passion for therapy is rooted in my background in healthcare.
I actually never intended to go into private practice or work outside of a hospital, until one day something happened and everything changed. I was present, in order to support both staff and the patient and her family, at a “high-risk” delivery. In other words, a delivery where the mother or baby’s health may be at risk. I had attended many high-risk deliveries before, but nothing like this. Despite the mother and healthcare team’s heroic efforts, tragic and unexpected circumstances led to the baby’s death. Every person in that room suffered deeply, especially the baby’s mother.
After that incident, different healthcare professionals and the patient’s family asked me who I would recommend they reach out to for mental healthcare, aka therapy, in our community. Of all the gifted therapists I know and respect, I could not think of anyone that could come from a place of complete understanding. At that point a seed was planted in my mind—I would like to serve my favorite community of people, patients AND medical professionals, myself. My time, space, and capacities were very limited in the hospital setting. I was unable to provide long-term, consistent therapy in a private, safe space.
I was drawn to pursue work in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) right out of graduate school. When I learned about the opportunity I knew instantly that’s how I’d like to begin my professional career. I have known for as long as I can remember that my purpose professionally was to serve uniquely vulnerable people, and a NICU contains just that! I loved the privilege of working among fragile newborn babies and the fragile mothers that adored them. That experience only heightened my interest not only in the power of the mother/baby connection but in the hospital environment in general. I was fascinated and energized by the intensity of an ICU and the kinds of people that work there. Since then I have also worked in a progressive care unit, outpatient clinic, and the labor & delivery operating room.
I have always held healthcare professionals AND the patients they serve in the highest regard. I feel as though a hospital is a rare place where everyone is vulnerable. Doctors and nurses are under pressure to provide “excellent” care to lots of very sick and sometimes very unhappy people. On the other hand, very sick people are away from their families and relying on strangers to meet their urgent, sometimes life threatening needs. It is an emotionally charged, high-stakes environment. At the same time, in my experience, there is very little, if any, professional emotional support readily available to those who sustain it.
I have worked with some healthcare professionals that seem to be fully present in the moment, are engaged and kind to the people around them, and feel happy overall about their work.
I have also worked with healthcare professionals who are miserable in one way or another. I’ve worked with surgical nurses who feel defeated and exhausted every day, and dread each new patient admission. I’ve worked with bedside nurses that adore caring for their patients but dread working with their patients’ families, who—due to their own overwhelm and fear— can sometimes be demanding, disrespectul, unkind, or all three.
I have worked with some providers who appear to have given up. They are physically present but otherwise completely detached from human connection. They talk to families and answer their questions, but don’t appear to care very much about what they are saying or the impact it has on the people they are saying it to.
My message to you is: It doesn’t have to be this way! You deserve to feel safe, fully present, at peace, and proud of the work you are doing. I can help.
If you have received medical care, and have suffered because of it, you’ve come to the right place. I understand the environment and what kind of pressure everyone is under. You will not need to provide me with a “crash course” of where you are coming from or feel afraid or hesitant to tell me about something tragic that happened. I have been there and have witnessed it myself. This means we can get started right away working on what is bothering you.
My message to you is: If you are reading this right now, you have survived, but may still be suffering. You deserve to do more than survive—you deserve to thrive and find peace and pleasure in your life. I can help.
Women and Mothers
I have worked with pregnant, birthing, and postpartum women throughout my career. I have seen what a challenging time of life this can be for a woman, particularly if her experience doesn’t go like she expected it would. This can be a time in woman’s life that is frought with feelings of loneliness, isolation, guilt, and overwhelming fear and sadness. Becoming a mother for the first time or the fifth can sometimes come with extreme challenges.
My message to you is: You are not alone! There are many women whose road to motherhood has been full of unexpected and painful twists and turns. It is time to get the support and attention you so greatly deserve.
My Approach to Therapy
When you come to work with me you can expect me to be intuitive, nurturing, and honest.
If you are looking for a therapist that simply listens and nods, I may not be the best fit for you.
I will respectfully meet you where you are and work at your pace. I will also share with you my interpretations of all that you share with me and specific recommendations as to how we can better understand and resolve your struggles. I will encourage you to try new ways to solve old problems, and support you through potential discomfort that may arise. I very much believe that if we keep doing things the same way, we will keep getting the same results.
I believe the ultimate goal for all of us is to learn how to live our lives fully in the present, with honesty, integrity, and joy. If you have been unhappy or suffering for a long time or have endured some difficult circumstances, it can take some time and work to heal old wounds.
Once those old wounds are given the care and attention they deserve, however, it’s kind of like swiping down a big spider web between two trees in a forest. There is enough clarity and safety to see clearly and move forward.
I am here to help you finally pay attention to and take care of what is nagging you, so you can experience all the joy and fulfillment life has to offer.
You deserve nothing less.