Kansas City


Scott Thode, MA, PLPC

Under Supervision of 

Dr. Joy Whitman, PhD

9233 Ward Parkway, #305

Kansas City, MO 64114





Kansas City Psychotherapy offers Counselor Supervision, Individual Counseling, Psychiatric, and Psychological Services, as well as Marriage Counseling, Couples Therapy, Adolescent Therapy and Online Video Counseling in the Kansas City area.  We are conveniently located near Leawood, Prairie Village, Waldo, and Overland Park.

About Dr. Jeff Peterson, PhD

LCPC, LPC, NCC, PCC, Supervisor

Jeff’s Counseling Services Theoretical Approach

Relational Psychotherapy (Relational-Cultural Therapy)
Relational Psychotherapy (RCT) is based on the idea that an individual’s mental health is greatly influenced by how well that person is able to create and sustain meaningful relationships with those around them.  Challenges related to anxiety, stress, or emotional attachment have often prevented the individual from feeling secure in their own skin and therefore feeling secure enough to form meaningful attachments to those around them.  During therapy we will work together to unravel past experiences and better understand their impact.  We will also work together to practice building a secure relationship with one another, recognize problematic behavioral patterns that might be getting in the way of a positive relationship, and develop skills for strengthening your relationship with yourself (self-confidence) and building stronger healthier relationships in the future.

Emotionally Focused Therapy (E.F.T.)
Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is helpful for improving your relationship with others (couples, family members, co-workers, friends).  It is based on the idea that each individual develops emotional patterns that could contribute to potentially distressing cycles of interaction.  Exploring emotions together in therapy can help reveal particular patterns, their triggers, and the dynamic of how those emotions interlock or play off of one another.  Developing emotional intelligence and emotional awareness begins in a safe therapeutic environment where each individual is allowed to express their experiences and feelings without judgment.  The goal is to eventually learn how to release stressful feelings or anxieties and move into a place of validation (feeling heard and understood by others).  Learning how to feel secure in releasing and validating these feelings around others lays a foundation for developing deeper healthier relationships.

Somatic Experiencing (S.E.)
Somatic experiencing (SE) takes into account the connection between our mind and body.  The approach contextualizes our experiences into varying degrees of threat and how the body responds to such threat.  The goal is to help reduce the negative psychological symptoms of past traumatic events (such as anxiety, shame, PTSD, or aggression) through allowing the body to fully process or release what happened.  The idea is that once the body restores or rebalances itself it will be better equipped to self-regulate emotional challenges that arise in the present.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (C.B.T.), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (D.B.T.), Mindfulness Training, Psychoanalytic Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, and Existential Therapy
Part of my toolbox of therapeutic techniques involves incorporating the use of number of additional mental health theoretical approaches.  One such approach is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).  CBT is well known for helping individuals identify and change unhealthy or distorted thought patterns.  These thought patterns can then trigger emotional responses that form a chain of emotional events.  This process happens so quickly that it is often outside of the awareness of an individual and therefore requires a significant process of unraveling over time.  Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is behavioral in nature and helps individuals develop new skills for coping with emotions and interacting with others.  This involves developing mindful awareness based on living in the present moment and accepting each moment as it is without influence from past preconceived beliefs or emotions.  DBT helps a client accept the present moment with a non-judgmental stance and works towards developing new models of interacting with self and others.  Psychoanalysis or psychodynamic approaches focus on analyzing past events and how those events shape our present and future.  This often involves looking at your attachment to your surroundings, care providers, role-models, and peers.  It also strives to help an individual develop awareness and coping skills for dealing with past unresolved issues.  Gestalt and Existential therapy focus on pulling everything together by contextualizing the whole person or whole experience with the feelings, thoughts, or behaviors that an individual is struggling with. 

Jeff is Affiliated with the Following Professional Associations

American Psychiatric Association (APA) www.psychiatry.org

American Psychological Association (APA) www.apadivision44.org

American Counseling Association (ACA) - www.counseling.org                                                       
American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) www.amhca.org

Association for Specialists in Group Work (ASGW) www.asgw.org

Healthcare Guild (Guild) www.healthcareguild.com

Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities (CARAS) www.carasresearch.org

American Association of Sexuality Educators Counselors and Therapists (AASECT) www.aasect.org

American Medical Association (LGBT-GLMA) www.glma.org

American Counselor Educators and Supervisors (ACES) - www.acesonline.net                         
World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) www.wpath.org

Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS) www.sexscience.org

National Coalition for Sexual Freedom (NCSF) www.ncsfreedom.org

Dr. Jeff Peterson, PhD, is a Nationally Certified Counselor and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor who is currently a faculty member in the Clinical Counseling program at Northwestern University in Chicago. He also maintains a private practice where he focuses on self-esteem issues, managing stress, couples therapy, anxiety and depression, dealing with shame and addiction, and sexual or gender identity issues.

Dr. Peterson serves on the editorial review board for the American Counseling Association and has lectured to mental health professionals throughout the country on how to avoid Microaggressions in a clinical setting, ethical concerns in therapy, and the psychological effects of shame. He is the co-founder and organizer of the Healthcare Guild (healthcareguild.com), a national non-profit organization dedicated to helping sexual and gender minorities find affirming and culturally competent health care. Dr. Peterson is a graduate of the University of Iowa and Walden University, with a PhD in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Education and Supervision.

Dr. Peterson's credentials are PhD, LCPC, LPC, NCC, PCC, which are as follows: Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD), Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Counselor Educator and Supervisor (ACES), National Board Certified Counselor (NCC), and National Professional Certified Coach (PCC) in the states of Missouri, Kansas, and Colorado. Dr. Peterson is a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success, Golden Key, and Chi Sigma Iota graduate academic honors societies.  He is also a two-time graduate scholarship recipient with over 4000 hours of mental-health based volunteer community service.

Dr. Peterson was recently a behavioral health clinician at Saint Luke’s Hospital in their Employee Assistance Program, as well as an Emergency Room behavioral health assessment clinician. He is also a former CARF (Commission on the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) IOP (Intensive Outpatient) Dual-Diagnosis program facilitator. His private practice, Kansas City Psychotherapy, focuses on: managing stress, recovering from previous trauma, couples communication, relationship enhancement, managing general and social anxiety, life coaching and performance improvement, dealing with shame, managing addiction, and working through sexual or gender identity issues. Dr. Peterson is also a Counselor Supervisor who provides supervision for those attaining Licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor, Psychologist, or Social Worker.

In recent years Dr. Peterson has been an invited keynote speaker for Laureate Education, presenting TED-style talks to over 500 people in major metropolitan areas such as San Diego, Hawaii, Orlando, and Houston, on the topic of diversity, global responsibility, and fostering positive social change.  He recently presented at the national American Medical Association (GLMA) Conference about ethical concerns in therapy, at the national ACES (Association for Counselor Education and Supervision) Conference on how to deal with the psychological effects of shame, at the Colorado Counseling Association Conference on how to avoid Microaggressions in a clinical setting, and has presented on these topics for Mental Health America (MHA), Good Therapy, Research Psychiatric Hospital, Saint Luke's Health System, Missouri Health Equity Collaborative (MOHEC), and several community mental health centers in Missouri, Kansas, and Colorado.

Dr. Peterson is a member of the American Psychological Association (APA), American Counseling Association (ACA), American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA), Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (ACES), Colorado Counseling Association (CCA), the Greater Kansas City Psychological Association (GKCPA), the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom (NCSF), the Consortium for Academic Research in Alternative Sexualities (CARAS), and World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH).

Jeff’s former career was in entertainment and sports television where he worked on the production teams for ABC, ESPN, CBS, NBC, Fox, and National Geographic.  Credits of note include ABC’s Big 10 College Football with Keith Jackson, Bob Griese, and Lynn Swan; NCAA Final Four Basketball Championships; NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs; Fox Sports Major League Baseball; ABC Television’s sitcom "Coach" with Craig T. Nelson; NBC’s investigative series "Unsolved Mysteries;" ABC's Miss America Pageant with the cast of "The Bachelorette;" and National Geographic’s reality series "Shark Men" with the star of "The Fast and The Furious," Paul Walker.


Jeff Peterson Video on Finding the Right Therapist

Click Here to Watch Video



individual, couples, adolescent, & online counseling