David Avruch, LCSW-C

Psychotherapy & Social Work

Ethical and effective psychotherapy and social work services in Baltimore, Maryland.

My Practice Philosophy

There is so much diversity in the world; everyone has different strengths and different skills. Mine is helping adults experience relief from suffering and, very often, find greater peace, balance and direction. To achieve this I rely on both intuition and evidence-based research, spirit and science. This is reflective of my own personality, a mix of optimism and skepticism. I am trained in and utilize various therapy acronyms including CBT, SFT and ACT*. Mindfulness practice also is key. I am built to discuss the things that are hard to discuss, and my clients tell me they value the authenticity and directness I bring to my work.

Each of us struggles sometimes; some are dealt a really bad hand. Like many therapists I am well trained in working with anxiety, depression, relationship problems, life transitions and grief. However, I also am comfortable working with issues that some therapists avoid: substance misuse, severe trauma (including sexual trauma), sexual problems (including paraphilias), gender identity issues and “personality disorders.” Regardless of the prompting concern, my door is open to those who want to try things a new way. I strive to provide services that are anti-oppressive, anti-racist, sex-positive and gender-affirming.

One note: it is possible to work with trauma issues effectively without bringing in lots of potentially triggering details re: past events.

*CBT = Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
SFT = Solution-Focused Therapy
ACT = Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

About Credentials

I pursued graduate training in social work rather than psychology because the DSM-5, though a useful text and a great achievement in epidemiology, does not adequately capture the depth of human experience. It fails to appreciate the impact of injustice, sexism, racism and material impoverishment on psychological development, and it does not understand "trauma" broadly enough, including from an intergenerational perspective. I have found the political and economic contexts of our problems often hold solutions. Truly caring for the self is a radical act, and healing our broken world necessarily begins with healing ourselves as individuals.

About me

I was raised in Massachusetts and currently reside in Baltimore, MD. I have a bachelor's degree from Johns Hopkins U. and a master of social work degree from Humboldt State U. in Arcata, CA. I identify as queer, white, Jewish, and male/cis-male.

In addition to my work as a therapist, I am a paneled social worker with the Office of the Public Defender of the State of Maryland. I also volunteer on the advisory board of Youth Empowered Society, Baltimore's only drop-in center for youth experiencing homelessness. I encourage you to support their incredible work.

About Fees

My fee is $140 per 50-minute session. Your health insurance may allow you to be reimbursed based on your out-of-network coverage. I am glad to help you figure that part out. I do offer a sliding scale for clients with financial barriers, and I maintain a pro bono caseload through the Pro Bono Counseling Project.