Andrea Nus, LMFT

Welcome! Wherever you are at in your journey, I am really glad you are here.

I am Andrea Nus, a white, married, cis-gender female using she/her/hers pronouns, in a fat and large body. These are some of my identities. It is important for me to be aware of my privilege with most of my identities and how this will affect our work together.

I want to create an atmosphere of trust and bravery, where you can explore your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. My intention is to show up each session with my warmth, care, interest, humor, and compassion for you.  A life-long learner, I experience great joy and excitement learning from peers, books, trainings, my own healing process, and my clients. Understanding our brains, bodies, and nervous systems, why relationships form, and why we react the way we do, fascinates me. Then I love (not always) to challenge myself in the slow, painful process of using this knowledge to change my harmful thinking, behaviors, or communications.

Becoming a therapist was a result of several circumstances (see Education below for more info on the twists and turns on my path.) The greatest influence was my own desire to seek therapy to work on aspects of myself activated in relationship to others. As a client I continue to gain insight, increase self-acceptance, heal old wounds, and grow more into who I want to be. Therapy results in changes that benefit my life and my relationships. This is what I hope for you.

Born in Cedar Rapids, originally the land of the Sac and Fox, I have lived here most of my life. My spouse and our two cats enjoy watching the neighborhood birds together. Much of my free time is spent at trainings, reading non-fiction, creating, yardwork, tending to the birds, attending concerts, and with loved ones.

Education

My path has many curves in it with unexpected bends and foggy patches. Each bend and foggy patch leaves me closer to who I want to be in this world, with more clarity and wisdom.

In 1999, I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations. While working at a local corporation, I was preparing to take the LSAT for entry to law school, for the third time. A family friend in the legal field encouraged me to consider becoming a mental health counselor. After the law school rejections I attended Kirkwood’s Paralegal program. Then, I began dating a friend. A couple of years later and a few months before our wedding, I changed jobs to work at a local non-profit. As a Volunteer Coordinator I most enjoyed working alongside volunteers and listening to their stories. Many stories were filled with hardships and pain. I wanted to have a more active role in people’s healing process. My own experience with therapy, the family friend’s seed planted several years ago, and my work experience led me to Mount Mercy University’s Masters of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy program. In 2012 I graduated, then worked for an agency then group private practice, and in 2016, opened my private practice.

Additional Training

In graduate school, I was introduced to Internal Family Systems (IFS). The model resonated with me and I completed IFS Level One training before graduation. As a Program Assistant to two Level One IFS trainings in Chicago, I deepened my understanding and experience of the model. Then I took IFS Level Two trainings in Intimacy From the Inside Out (IFIO) to strengthen my abilities in working with couples using the IFS model. After completing IFIO Basic Training, I took the Advanced and then Post-Advanced trainings. Now, I am deeply honored to be a Staff member for IFIO Basic Training.

Over the years, I have added the following trainings; Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Somatic Experience (not completed yet), and Transforming the Experience-Based Brain (touch therapy to address early developmental trauma.) Often, I integrate aspects of these models to enhance your treatment. For more information on these models see Ideal Client: Types of Therapy. These models are experiential in that in order for me use them to guide you, I experience them as a client. They mold how I understand and want to experience the world; through a compassionate, curious, and non-pathologizing lens.

When you become conscious of your purpose in life, you have both a gift and a responsibility.