Sometimes what seems like surrender isn’t surrender at all, it’s about what’s going on in our hearts - It’s about what’s going on in our hearts, about seeing clearly what life is and accepting it, and being true to it. Because the pain of not being true to it is far, far greater.
— Nicholas Evans, Horse Whisperers

She is helping me to become the best ME that I can be…

Four years ago when I met Karen, I was a very toxic and a hot mess. I was angry and thought I had to control everything. I had reached a point in my life that if I didn’t change, I would end up a bigger mess. For years I was the victim of childhood sexual assault that led into my adulthood. I was not only emotionless, but also physically and mentally out of whack. She helped me to see how many events in my life had brought me to that place. I have trust issues, but not as bad as before. When I finally reached out to Karen, it was the best decision I had ever made. She taught me that I don’t have to be angry and aggressive to get my point across – that if I use sweetness and light, it will go a long way and the outcome will be better. I am learning to change old behaviors and replace them with new ones, negative thoughts with positive thoughts and, most importantly, I learned the importance of removing toxic people from my life.

I am in the process of learning what it truly means to be happy, healthy, and whole. I always thought, “Once damaged, always damaged.” This is not true; something damaged can be worth saving. Karen helped me realize that I had a stronger, confident and self-loving person within myself. She is helping me to become the best ME that I can be. She senses when I may be stumbling, when I get weighed down, and she offers kind and gentle insights that become a light in one’s dark thoughts. No matter how bad, how negative, or how angry I have felt when I went into her office, I have always walked out feeling ten times better. I would recommend her to anyone who is having difficulties in their life. For she is a great asset to one’s healing. I could never thank her enough for all she has done for me.  - P.

forever grateful

There are people who touch our lives in a very special way at just the right time in our journey through life. We are forever changed and forever grateful for having met them and for the growth they have helped us to achieve. I believe that things happen for a reason. We meet people in our lives for a reason as well. Karen is that person in my life. I knew I wanted someone to help me overcome some of what life had dealt me, but I didn’t know how to do that. I was having nightmares every night, and it was causing me not to sleep, be depressed, and I was unfocused. As I listened to her, I realized that she wasn’t just any textbook therapist. She is compassionate, yet straightforward in helping others. It’s been four years, and I have come to appreciate her expertise, empathy and true dedication to her profession. She tells you like it is, when you’re ready to hear it and, at times, before you want to hear it. Karen has been extremely valuable in helping me identify my needs and build upon my strengths. Because of her, I have learned to be my own person and my personal growth has been achieved. Karen teaches you if you maintain your balance, be grateful for your blessings and be open to new beginnings, you will have a happy life. More importantly, she accompanies you on a path of self-healing, and provides the tools necessary to complete the journey. That is Karen’s gift to her clients. I wholeheartedly recommend Karen without hesitation, as she has been a true blessing in my life. I am grateful, and I thank God every day for letting her cross my path in life.
- Forever Grateful

she was supportive, honest, kind & truthful

Karen, in many ways, helped me change my life. She was supportive, honest, kind, truthful, and told me things in a very gentle but upfront way. She gave me the support and understanding to help me make a huge change in my life that I might never have made – and that decision was made by me! Karen simply gave me the tools and understanding to do it. She is also very loyal. I have had a rough road through this change and a lot of people haven’t been so supportive, but Karen was one of the few I found that was loyal, supportive and willing to do anything to help. She was there any time of day or hour – and always gave suggestions or referred me to the people who could help. She also did all of this without charging me an arm and a leg – she understands when you are struggling financially. Karen is one of the best people I know. God has blessed us when she was put on this earth. Thank you, Karen! - Candace Scholl

I have learned to value myself

My visits with Karen Tolen have been very beneficial to me in accepting and appreciating my new life as a single mother. I have learned to value myself and my decisions, and I have gathered strength to deal with a whole new life and to understand why I feel the way I do. And she has helped me to handle the stressful situations to the best of my ability. Most importantly, Karen has taught me to realize that I am a good person. I am so much stronger in who I am, and I’m no longer riding others’ emotional roller coasters. I have temporary lapses but realize they are just temporary – and I now have the tools to cope with them and continue to be productive. It is important to me to be a good role model for my child. I highly recommend Karen as a professional who also feels like a friend. We all need someone on our side!
- Anonymous


All I knew was that I wasn’t happy with how I viewed myself, the world, and others, and that I wanted to change.  I’d thought of seeing a counselor many times in the past but never took that first step – which is often the hardest – to make the call.  This time was different. I really wanted to change.  I called Karen, after hearing of her from others in the community, and began a journey toward a much happier and accepting self. It wasn’t easy – facing and discussing things I was fearful of, ashamed of, or confused by. Karen said during one our first sessions: this is one of the hardest things you will ever do – but if you do the work, your life will change.

If you are reading this testimonial, you, too, are thinking about making changes.  Don’t do what I did and wait years to try and ‘get better’ – whatever that means to you.  Make the call.  Do the work. See what happens.  For me, Karen was a great person to have by my side for support, direction and guidance. -N.D.


I am a gardener. I plant seeds and tend soil. I water and watch the wonder of growth and am lifted by the beauty of the blossoms and deeply fed by the bounty of vegetables. Karen tended to me in that same way. My time in her good care was a powerful growing experience. I regained balance and the rebirth of joy with her nurturing spirit guiding the way. She has so many gifts…wisdom, life experience, intelligence and a soulful courage that is unafraid to explore one’s heavy heart. Karen also provides practical help. By using her network of support, there was never a need unmet. Working with Karen was a gift I gave myself. Thank you, Karen, for patiently watching your seeds take root. I am abundantly grateful for you! - Tracey Davis


After my divorce, Karen was a wonderful therapist/counselor for me, and sometimes my children as well. Karen knows just the right questions to ask and offers tools that help. No matter how I felt when I arrived, I always felt so much better when our session was over. She’s an excellent listener and really has a beautiful way of supporting and providing the crucial piece of professional perspective that makes a difference! I would highly recommend Karen to anyone ready to gain new understanding and/or simply be supported toward positive growth. - Jill O.


Karen was of tremendous help to me during the greatest crisis of my life. I don’t think I could have made it through without her encouragement and upbeat, ‘can-do’ attitude. I will be forever grateful for her caring attitude and expertise. - J.N.


Karen Tolen’s intelligent, compassionate and understanding approach to assisting me sort out my issues and understand myself better has made an impacting and positive difference in my life. Although this is a life-long process, I feel ‘lighter’ and more centered when I leave our appointments. - A.V.S.


My husband and I sought counseling from Karen Tolen last winter. My husband started first to discuss some of his own issues, and I joined him for the latter part of our counseling. While not every issue was solved, through Karen’s skills we were able to gain a better idea of underlying causes and a greater depth of compassion for each other’s histories. What I love most about Karen is her love and concern for all people and the diversity of thought she presents. -D.A.L.


I started therapy knowing I needed to make some changes in my life to be a happier person – yet not knowing how to do that. I’ve come along way. Karen has been a steadfast compass always there and telling me the change that needs to be made to accomplish my goal. I have quit beating myself up so much, and taking everything so personally. I could finally forgive a person in my life because I could see the part I played in the situation. I could finally forgive myself for the way I raised my son and just allow him to be himself. Drop a lot of the expectations and allow people to be, not the way I thought they should be, and life gets a lot better. I am less controlling. Being more patient and waiting for God’s time, not mine. It usually is a better plan than one I could ever come up with. - G.K.


I have had the opportunity to have Karen Tolen work with me through my divorce. Karen helped me work through the pain and confusion that is a divorce. She helped me look at all of the angles, to gain a much clearer picture of my marriage. Karen is a very caring, insightful therapist. Working with her has been a wonderful experience in the midst of a terrible time in my life! - B.J.F.