Maria Rheba Estante profile image

Maria Rheba Estante

Maria Rheba Estante


11 years of experience

If someone asked you not to think for 10 minutes how hard would that be? Is overthinking about the “What Ifs” driving you to relentlessly check things over and over again? Are you determined to find certainty in an uncertain world? Do you frequently ask others repeatedly if something or someone is going to be OK? No matter how much you do a task or say a particular thing does peace of mind elude you? Does the compulsion to handwash, re-read, double check, pray, or re-arrange items never provide lasting relief? Do you find yourself burdened by intrusive thoughts that strike against your will and preoccupy your mind for hours a day? OCD is characterized by unabating obsessions matched with intense mental or behavioral rituals to relieve the anxiety provoked. It is not treated by “talk therapy” but with Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). Through customized gradual exposures, ERP is an evidence-based method of intervention to reduce the severity of OCD symptoms. ERP is a collaborative and creative approach to learning new skills and strategies to become comfortable with uncertainty and more confident in your ability to handle life’s unexpected challenges. My style is compassionate, client centered, and culturally sensitive. What to do if you’re nervous about sharing your thoughts with me in therapy? If you're too embarrassed to share something, you can write it down, you can use visuals, you can type it. We can work around this to find other ways that you can deliver the communication. I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in California, Hawaii, Indiana, Massachusetts, Nevada and Virginia. Registered Out-of-State Telehealth Provider in Florida, South Carolina, and Vermont. My treatment focus is on neurodivergent issues, gifted learners, managing life transitions, women’s mental health issues around shifting roles in family and career, and immigration/re-entry adjustment stressors.

What can clients expect to take away from sessions with you?

My therapeutic style is collaborative, client-centered, and multiculturally sensitive. I focus on supporting neurodivergent and gifted learners with healthy adaptive coping tools to develop resilience in an uncertain world. Interventions used in my practice are evidenced and strength based. You are the expert on you. My role is to facilitate and support an awareness of how to implement changes to overcome unhelpful patterns in thinking and decision making. I strive to see the whole person not just a list of symptoms. Understanding your unique background is key because therapy is not a cookie cutter approach.

Explain to clients what areas you feel are your biggest strengths.

This is not a cookie-cutter approach. You will not be treated like a textbook case. Therapy is unique to each person, and treatment is very collaborative. It's more of a partnership. You're the expert on you. We will follow a process and a protocol, but you will be very involved in the treatment, not passive As a therapist, I like to learn a lot about what's happening in your life now. How does your OCD manifest in daily life? What are you doing now that isn't working for you? I also like to get background stories to determine perhaps why some of these anxieties exist. I like to look at biopsychosocial history—like birth order or your school experience—which is often relevant.

About Maria Rheba Estante


Fully booked

My treatment methods

Exposure Response Prevention (ERP)

Specialized training in Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) for OCD, Habit Reversal Training (HRT) for Excoriation Disorder or Trichotillomania and Flash technique/EMDR for PTSD. EMDR (Basic 1 and 2) trained Clinician (EMDRIA).


According to current research, approximately 40 to 60 percent of OCD has a trauma onset. Unresolved trauma may cause a person's nervous system to be already elevated on a daily basis. For individuals who experience both PTSD and OCD symptoms, resolving traumatic memories often takes priority in treatment. The Cleveland Clinic explains EMDR as follows: Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is a mental health treatment technique. This method involves moving your eyes a specific way while you process traumatic memories. EMDR’s goal is to help you heal from trauma or other distressing life experiences. The first clinical trial investigating EMDR was in 1989. EMDR is an evidence-based modality that has been used by organizations such as the VA to treat symptoms of PTSD.