who we are
Sweetgrass Psychological Services is a Whitefish based practice devoted to helping children, families, individuals and couples find their way toward greater mental health. We provide individual, group, family, and couples counseling as well as psychological assessment and professional consultation.
sara boilen, psy.d.
Dr. Sara Boilen is a licensed clinical psychologist (MT #1196). Sara offers therapy for children, adolescents, families, couples, and adults. She obtained her doctoral degree from The University of Denver but has called the Flathead Valley home for many years. Her graduate studies emphasized women's issues, child development, and psychological assessment. Her professional interests include connection through vulnerability, grief work, mindfulness, and development. Sara has helped individuals as they have overcome depression, anxiety, attachment related difficulties, childhood trauma, unfulfilling relationships, and other life challenges. She brings vibrancy, humor, tremendous compassion, and honesty to her work with people and favors a collaborative approach in her work; empowering her clients to find their inner strength and courage. Sara's practice - rooted in rigorous clinical training - follows a pragmatic approach, honoring the wisdom of the client and the power of healing relationships. That is, while her work is informed by empirically-based practices, she takes time to figure out what each client needs. While we will work together to address the symptoms that brought you or your loved one to our office, we will also work on understanding the root of your struggles as well as the aspects of your life that have kept you trapped. As your distress decreases and your awareness increases, we will free you up to move toward happiness and away from suffering. Mindfulness, coupled with the advances in our understanding of the brain, contributes to her integration of mindfulness, DBT, and ACT into her therapy practice. I do not believe in fixing people, but rather in helping them become the brightest versions of themselves. What does your brightest self look like?
Sara is the founder and director of Sweetgrass Psychological Services.
kara stansbury, LMFT, LCPC
Kara Stansbury, LCPC, LMFT earned her Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Appalachian State University in 2012. She is dually licensed in Montana as a Clinical Professional Counselor and Marriage and Family Therapist. Kara has worked in a variety of settings including Wilderness Therapy, Residential Treatment, LGBT Mental Health, and Substance Abuse Treatment with adolescents, families, individuals and couples. Much of her work has been devoted to helping families heal from depression/anxiety, divorce/separation, grief, addiction, trauma, and communication issues. Kara is also trained as an Academic Coach for adolescents and a Parent Educator for parents with children prenatal-5 years old.
Kara got her start in therapy as a backcountry guide for at-risk adolescents. She see’s herself fulfilling a similar role as a therapist; guiding you to a healthier and more balanced life, marriage or family. She brings a calm, thoughtful, and knowledgeable presence to sessions and uses evidence based approaches like Family Systems Theory, DBT, CBT, and Mindfulness to help you achieve the changes you are seeking. At times, we all stray away from our true nature and need support along the way. Thank you in advance for having the courage to seek support in living the life you desire.
Kara joined Sweetgrass Psychological Services in 2017 as a fully licensed, independent therapist.
priya loess, m.a.
Priya Loess holds a Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology and is a PH.D. candidate at the University of Montana. Priya brings a calming presence as she invites individuals to work on developing greater self-compassion, emotional regulation skills, and healing from traumatic experiences. She has worked with individuals who have suffered from sexual assault and domestic violence as well as discrimination. She weaves in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) to her person-centered approach to therapy. Priya is in training and is an eager, self-aware learner who has joined Sweetgrass Psychological Services in the spirit of deepening her clinical understanding of her clients as well as her skill set as a clinician. She is eager to work with you and offers a reduced fee to assist in meeting the needs of the Whitefish community.
Priya has been a clinical extern with Sweetgrass Psychological Services since 2016.
Mark is currently completing a PhD in clinical psychology at the University of Montana. His clinical interests are in utilizing a variety of valid psychological assessments to provide his clients with a comprehensive understanding of themselves and in the application of these assessments in the context of psychotherapy. Mark approaches psychotherapy from a client-centered humanistic perspective while incorporating a variety of treatments ranging from cognitive-behavioral and dialectical-behavioral therapies to existential and other psychodynamic-based therapies. In addition, he is particularly interested in assisting people with understanding their current circumstances from lifespan perspective. He has experience providing therapy for people coping with depression, anxiety, PTSD, ADHD, interpersonal conflict, and general distress. Mark joined Sweetgrass Psychological Services in August 2017.