We had the good fortune of connecting with Ashley Whyte and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ashley, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I started my business because I saw a lack of mental health services that specifically cater to the needs of the BIPOC community. I am passionate about creating space for my community to feel safe, to have room to open up, and to just allow themselves to be vulnerable. Historically, conversations about mental health in our community are often avoided and are even considered taboo. It is not uncommon for black people to have a difficult time with trusting the medical and mental health care system in our country. We are likely to ignore and neglect our mental health with the belief that we just need to “stay strong”. Some are more inclined to turn to the church and pray their problems away. While there is nothing wrong with praying and turning to our faith, we must also acknowledge that we can go to both church and therapy. Everyone is susceptible to internalizing some form of mental or emotional trauma. My goal is to assist minorities with unpacking this baggage and relieve them of their mental burdens the best way I can. I want people to know that with a me as your therapist you can feel free from judgment and you do not have to hide or downplay your identity or experiences. No one likes feeling invisible, especially when in distress. My greatest hope for my clients after a session with me is for them to feel “seen”.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Serenity Counseling and Solutions provides a wide range of mental health services and consultations. We pride ourselves in meeting clients where they are in their individual journey. Our clinical services include psychotherapy (counseling) and biopsychosocials (assessments), which provide a safe and healthy opportunity for individuals and families to work towards healing. We also offer consultations for court cases, physician referral and expertise on an array of mental health conditions. On our team we advocate a wealth of knowledge and resources because mental health is just as important as physical health. Serenity Counseling and Solutions was founded to deliver quality services for community members in need. My journey has not been easy yet I am able to overcome many challenges with determination and perseverance. I have made it thus far with the dedicated support of my family and friends. Nothing in life happens by accident. With a growth-mindset I can see opportunity in all of life’s lessons. I believe that when I walk in my purpose I will always win, and that is how I measure my success.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Sooooo many places to choose from but here’s a few: Jackson’s soul food, crabman305, Joes Stone Crab, YardBird Southern Table & Bar, sweet liberty, broken shaker, high tide, social club, dr limbo, pub belly, suviche, 1800 lucky.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My loving husband, family and awesome support system
M.S. Visuals & Photos