Meet Our writers

Below you can learn more about our talented team of writers here at Defeating Divorce. After reading more about them, you should come to see that they are as qualified as they are passionate about helping couples improve their relationships. 

Angela Doel

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with her degree in Counseling Psychology, Angela M. Doel worked as a psychotherapist, primarily with families and couples. Her research interests include interpersonal communication, and in 2020, she published The Couples Communication Workbook: Therapeutic Homework Assignments to Foster Supportive Relationships.

Along with publishing five other mental health workbooks, Ms. Doel has written hundreds of psychotherapy assignment worksheets for adults, teens, and couples. She has researched and written about mental health problems that impact relationships, such as navigating divorce, rebuilding relationships, enhancing communication, and overcoming sex addiction.

When she isn’t writing or conducting research, Ms. Doel enjoys reading fiction, running outdoors, walking on the beach, and spending time with her children.

Michelle Overman

Michelle Overman

Michelle is licensed by the state of Texas as a Marriage and Family Therapist. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Family Studies and a Master of Marriage and Family Therapy from Abilene Christian University. While earning her degree, she focused on Family Systems Theory where individuals and their lives are viewed in the context of the relationships or the systems in which they are a part of. Michelle uses that lens when working with couples and families.

Over her time in the field, she has helped couples understand the inhibiting patterns within their relationships and overcome those difficulties by creating more connection and vulnerability. In her life outside the therapy room, Michelle enjoys being outside and doing obstacle course racing. She also soaks up as much time as she can with her husband and two young boys.

Jennifer Tanaka

Jennifer Tanaka

Jennifer is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a passion for helping couples struggling within their marriage, relationship, or during the divorce process. She graduated at the top of her class from Texas A&M University with honors. Being fluent in English, Japanese, and Spanish, Jennifer is able to help couples of various ethnic backgrounds and perform outreach and connect with inner-city minority groups who might have otherwise been overlooked.

As a proud Aggie, Jennifer attends homecoming every year and is deeply involved with virtually mentoring A&M undergraduates in her free time. When not up to her neck in casework and clients, Jennifer enjoys cooking new recipes for her always hungry husband, practicing the piano, and trying her hand any adventure sport.

Robert Hughes

Robert Hughes

A former big city dweller, Robert proudly owned and operated his own Family Counseling Practice in Chicago for over ten years. On a near daily basis, Robert was able to help couples and families alike resolve, accept, and improve turbulence, trauma, and tension within their interpersonal relationships.

An adventurer at heart, Robert now travels the U.S. in a renovated RV with his wife and their two Jack Russell Terriers. However, when he’s not behind the wheel exploring National Parks or new cities, Robert loves to conduct virtual therapy sessions with clients and contribute to various mental health, psychology, marriage, and other related publications, websites, and the like.

A lifelong writer, it is Robert’s biggest dream to one day publish a book that helps change the mental health stigma in our country.

Dan Smith

Dan Stone is a freelance mental health and self-development writer and content creator with plenty of firsthand experience studying and providing counseling and coaching services.

His work as a mental health service provider includes six years of clinical and counselor training at the University of Pittsburgh where he supervised clinical research and individual interpersonal psychotherapy at the university’s Depression Prevention and Treatment Center. Additionally, Dan has conducted individual psychotherapy with multicultural community mental health center outpatients, as well as individual counseling with university undergraduate and graduate students using brief psychodynamic psychotherapy. Meanwhile, at Carnegie Mellon University, Dan developed and facilitated a support group for gay and bisexual students.

A wearer of many hats, Dan is also a published novelist, poet, educator, and photographer. Today he lives in beautiful Utah with his partner where he loves the mountains and misses the ocean.

Tracy Smith

Tracy Smith

Tracy Smith, LPC, NCC, ACS is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of New Jersey, a Nationally Certified Counselor, an Approved Clinical Supervisor, and a mental health freelance writer. Tracy received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rutgers University and a Master of Science degree in Professional Counseling from Monmouth University.

Tracy has worked in the mental health field for the past fourteen years in a variety of settings and levels of care. Tracy has worked with clients of all ages, providing individual, group, family, and couples counseling. Tracy is passionate about writing to educate readers about various mental health topics and especially enjoys writing about marriage and relationships.

When she is not working, Tracy enjoys spending time with her husband, seven-year-old twins, and two cats. Tracy is an avid reader, enjoys taking walks, and loves to grab a cup of coffee and catch up with friends.

Erika Krull

Erika Krull

Erika Krull, MSEd, LMHP, brings her experience as a mental health counselor to her writing. She’s helped many people work through challenging relationship dynamics and issues. She’s also addressed a broad scope of mental health issues with individuals, couples, and families.

Erika earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1995, and her master’s degree in community counseling from the University of Nebraska-Kearney in 1997. She began her writing career in 2008 contributing to continuing education classes. She now creates custom online content for a variety of behavioral health businesses.

When she’s not writing, Erika enjoys gardening, daily walks with her dog, following Nebraska Cornhusker athletics, and trying new recipes in the kitchen.

Sheree McDonald

Sheree McDonald is a professional medical and healthcare writer with over ten years of industry experience. Her educational background includes a Master’s Degree in Professional Writing and Editing from Northern Arizona University, which helped shape her writing craft and hone necessary research skills. 

Upon graduation, Sheree established McDonald Content Solutions, a medical content agency dedicated to providing exceptional medical and healthcare content. Sheree is committed to providing high-quality content that educates and inspires readers to live healthy and fulfilling lives. 

Sheree is incredibly passionate about self-help and psychology topics and advocates for mental health. She spends her free time volunteering for Crisis Text Line, a text-based support system designed to connect people in crisis with necessary resources.

Sofia Bolanos

Sofia Bolanos has over seven years of experience in the mental health field and is an avid peer support counselor and volunteer. She also works closely with homeless populations in the San Francisco Bay Area and provides resources and support to vulnerable individuals within the community. 

Her goal is to utilize her gift of insight to become a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. As part of her commitment to that goal, she facilitates a monthly support group in which couples are strongly encouraged to attend. She received a B.A. in Sociology from San Francisco State University and is on track to continue her graduate studies in 2023.

In addition to her passions for writing and helping others in their healing journeys, she enjoys oil painting, contemporary dance, plant care, and spending quality time with her dog.

William Clark

William is a mental health writer with expertise in topics including couples counseling, fostering passion in marriage, grieving the loss of a partnership, improving individual well-being for relationship success, and navigating crises as a couple. He has written for local therapists and well-known publications and companies, including BetterHelp and Mantra Health. 

With an M.A. in English, William understands the power of the written word and its value in helping others with their mental health. He strives to help others with a combination of research-based information and personal experience with family and positive well-being practices. 

When he isn’t writing about psychiatric health, William loves spending time with his wife and children, playing guitar, and reading.

Raymond Bryant Jr

Raymond Bryant Jr., MSW, is an aspiring Children and Family Therapist. He currently holds an MSW degree from Virginia Commonwealth University. He has rained for several years in multiple forms of therapy techniques, including CBT, DBT, and SFT, to name a few. He is especially passionate about helping families succeed and preventing children and families from becoming estranged due to the changes in the world.

He is a devoted husband and has been married for several years now to my lovely wife. If he is not helping his wife create YouTube videos, then he is usually outside playing basketball and enjoying life. He prides himself on his work as a therapist, community involvement, and communication.

Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is a writer with over ten years of experience in the relationship world. She enjoys cooking and hitting up her local nail salon.

A graduate of the school of hard knocks, Ossiana’s relationship writing has been featured in major publications like YourTango and MetNights magazine. They have appeared on countless podcasts and radio shows thanks to their unique takes on what it means to be in a relationship in difficult times like these. 

Ashley Derrig

Ashley Derrig is a limited licensed social worker in the state of Michigan and a healthcare content writer. She has worked in healthcare for over ten years in settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, and community health centers. Ashley has presented at conferences and won her company ‘Business of the Year Award’. A strong advocate and educator, she focuses on mental health and relationships, developmental disabilities, and senior care.

Adam Krieger

Adam Krieger has spent the last seven years researching and writing about industrial psychology, animal behavior, mental health, and nutrition. After several years of practicing neuromarketing and studying consumer behavior, he realized he could use his insight to help people manage the environments, thoughts, emotions, habits, and choices that affect the quality of their lives. He is a volunteer, and supporter of Autism Speaks in San Diego and supports causes related to mental health. When he’s not reading and writing, he’s constantly on the hobby horse. He loves graphic design, painting, music, neuroscience, and natural language processing.