OCD Peer Support Specialist Augmenting
Treatment with a Lived Experience
Schedule and Pay for a Phone, FaceTime or Skype
Peer Support Session with Shannon or Chrissie
(See Session Info Below)
There is incredible camaraderie and power in the words ‘me too.’ Peer Support is not therapy and Peer Support Specialists are not a replacement for licensed mental health professionals. However, they can be a powerful supplement to help individuals fully engage in treatment, and to provide hope and motivation as a model that recovery is possible for anyone living with mental illness.
Shannon and Chrissie are both certified Peer Support Specialists (also known as Peer Recovery Specialist). Trained on the Appalachian Consulting Group’s Georgia Model of Recovery, their peer support efforts include sharing their stories through books, videos, daily Facebook and Twitter messages, motivational videos on this website’s Hope Forum and other platforms, and through individual peer support sessions.
(and family members and friends) who struggle with OCD, by sharing my lived experiences and providing motivation to enhance recovery and long-term sustainability.
(Pre-inpatient or outpatient treatment, During outpatient treatment; and post-inpatient or outpatient treatment)
- Complement and augment the clinician’s treatment by assisting the peer in the implementation of his or her treatment protocols;
- Assist the peer (and others associated with the peer) focus on recovery and sustainability;
- Provide hope that it is possible to recover, to gain control of his or her life, and move forward to live life in a direction he or she wants to go;
- Provide insight into recovery skills to assist the peer to move beyond the disabling power of mental illness;
- Assist the peer and others associated with the peer to change beliefs that inhibit recovery;
- Serve, upon request, as a bridge between the treatment provider and the peer by promoting understanding between the two;
- Assist the peer to set and achieve goals that will move the peer’s life in the direction he or she wants it to go;
- Advocate for the peer as appropriate;
- Assist the peer take responsibility for his or her own decisions;
- Assist the peer in problem solving;
- Assist in identifying the peer’s strengths and needs in terms of resources;
- Assist the peer in transforming from negative self-talk to positive self-talk and rebuilding a positive self-image.
Appointments offered in 30 and 60 minute segments by
telephone or skype, or in person for 60 minutes in the DC metro area.
Email Shannon at: firstname.lastname@example.org or Chrissie at email@example.com
to schedule an appointment.
Shannon’s Hours: Nights and Weekend Mornings
Chrissie’s Hours: Weekdays
30 Minutes: $45 (Phone, FaceTime or Skype)
60 Minutes $75 (Phone, FaceTime or Skype)
60 Minutes $85 (In person – DC/Northern VA for Shannon – Denver for Chrissie)
Self-Pay. Not taking insurance at this time.
30 Minutes: $45 (Phone or Skype)
60 Minutes: $75 (Phone or Skype)
60 Minutes: $85 (In Person/DC Metro Area Only)
“As tough as OCD can be, I’m grateful it brought Shannon Shy into my life. I developed OCD at 28 years old; I was primarily afraid of food contamination. After several years of meds and excellent Boston doctors, many warnings from doctors that I would need a feeding tube if I lost any more weight and a diagnosis of osteoporosis, I felt I had no where else to turn. My friend who works with Shannon asked him to reach out to me, and on that day, just like the day I started restricting food intake, my life changed, but this time, for the better! Shannon convinced me OCD can be beat and I’d literally call him while sitting at the dinner table staring at a plate of food I was terrified of. Shannon is the only person who helped me get the food down. He talked me through it and I couldn’t believe I was eating even though minutes earlier I was convinced I couldn’t. Shannon saved my life. How do you thank someone for that?” – Jennifer R, Worcester, MA
“I met Shannon Shy when I was 33 years old in the fall of 2016. Somehow I stumbled upon his Facebook page and started following. First, I must explain that I have dealt with OCD since I was 5 years old and it is not a new thing for me; it didn’t just come out of nowhere and I knew (or thought I knew) a lot about it. I’ve been taking SSRIs, benzos, an NDRI and the occasional antipsychotic since I was 17. My symptoms waxed and waned over the years (and included a myriad of obsessions, compulsions and intrusive thoughts, most commonly germs and contamination) but for long periods of time, I was doing just fine. There were more acute times than others, especially as a child when we didn’t know wh”at it was, but I functioned. When I decided to get pregnant I also decided to get off medication (at the time just Prozac). This proved to be disastrous and landed me in the emergency room at 12 weeks pregnant. In a nutshell, after getting pregnant and having my son, my OCD has gotten considerably worse.
When I found Shannon’s Facebook page, I started following it and found his messages to be very powerful. What stood out to me was his message of “You can do it. I did and we are not different.” This was especially significant because it made me realize that recovery WAS attainable and not only that, I wasn’t alone. During a particularly trying time I remember reading to my mom some of his posts and sobbing because it was like he was talking directly to me. This guy “gets it.” Shannon has never purported himself to be a medical professional, but I can only say that he has given a lot more insight about OCD than most of the therapists I have seen. I mentioned to my mom that he offered something called ‘peer support’ and my mom encouraged me to look into it, and to my surprise, we both live in the D.C. Metro area and he even works in the same building as my husband. I immediately ordered his books (as did my parents in an effort to help me). His memoir made perfect sense to me- meaning I absolutely related to his obsessions and compulsions.
My first session was in person and I spent the majority of it in tears. I was able to explain how my life had been up to this point and he understood me and not once did he take a step back and say “good lord, you thought what!?” And that’s because he truly understands what it’s like to be tortured by OCD. I can honestly say that he has changed my life. Shannon suffered horribly for years and dug himself out of the hell pit, as he says (which is quite accurate), and now he’s helping people. With his insight and support, I have a plan, I have a strategy and I know my reasons for having them. He’s shown me how to fight and most importantly, believes in me and I know he’s there if I need him. This man, who has his own family and job, has taken time out of his own life and our scheduled sessions to answer my messages- even in the middle of a work day on a lunch break. I have had more successes in the battle lately than ever before. I still fail quite often and have a long way to go but he has given me hope.
I still have no idea what led to me find his Facebook page but I will be forever grateful. If you are suffering, at the very least, read his website and Facebook. Read his books. He truly wants to help people. I cry when I read what other people go through in terms of obsessions and compulsions because I know how painful it is- Shannon does too and he doesn’t want others to suffer alone. His strategy is so simple yet so profound. I am beyond thankful for this man and all he is doing to raise awareness for OCD.” Sara, Alexandria, VA
“Thank G-d I took the risk!!! Shannon is trustworthy, compassionate, kind, smart and knowledgeable. He knows OCD inside out, and developed an effective strategy that helps to defeat this condition. During my sessions with him, I felt that he knew me, knew how I was thinking (how my OCD was thinking). I never had to explain myself, he never judged me even when I judged myself, and he gave me hope when I lost all hope. Most importantly he shared his knowledge and experience and gave me the essential tools that allowed me to overcome this condition. I have my life and freedom back, something that seemed so unattainable not too long ago. I feel like myself again, I’m happy and functional. Yes, I still have a journey a head of me, but I’m confident that it’s going to be okay. I can’t thank you enough Shannon. I’m a single mother and I’m all my kids have. When I showed them what I wrote they asked me to thank you as well for helping bringing their mother back to them. If you’re not sure about contacting Shannon feel free to contact me anytime I’ll be more than happy to talk to you and share my experience with you.” Maya, Toronto Canada
“I have had OCD for over forty years. I got on medication about 24 years ago and have been surviving, but struggling very hard to think live is worth it. I have had counseling in the past but it did not seem to do much. I came across Shannon Shy on Facebook and found his website. His upbeat motivation and inspiration really gave me hope that I could make progress in fighting OCD with his help. I signed up for and had six phone sessions with Shannon and it was the best thing I have done so far in my fight against OCD. He obviously totally understands OCD having battled it in his own life. He is a fantastic motivator and has the insight to help you see what really needs to be done to make progress. He really
cares about the people he works with. I believe I have the tools and attitude now to keep OCD at bay. I highly recommend him to anyone who suffers from OCD.” – Anonymous
“Working with Shannon Shy for just three peer support sessions greatly helped me get a handle on my OCD. Talking with someone who has a personal experience with OCD was very impactful for me. Shannon provided me with practical advice and tips to make OCD weaker. He never let me lose sight of my hope and motivation – the reasons why I want to get better. His strategy is working for me and I would highly recommend anyone suffering from OCD to work with Shannon Shy!” – Anonymous
“Just wanted to say thank you for your Facebook page and most recent book, which I am currently reading. I have had OCD for almost my entire life, but over the last few years it has become worse than ever and has been practically debilitating. I have started seeing a therapist and read some other material on overcoming mental illness/OCD but nothing has come close to helping as much as the messages on your fb page and your book. I have two amazing children and another on the way, and a wonderful and supportive husband who all deserve a mother and wife who can be at their best for them. I need to get better for them and for the first time I feel like it’s possible. So I just really felt like I needed to say thank you on behalf of me and my family. Thank you!” – Anonymous
“I can’t thank you enough Shannon, you’ve saved my life, most likely literally, I was in a terrible way with the sick and twisted thoughts for a long time, I never thought I’d get better, but I honestly think if I stay in a happy environment and keep pushing forward, I’m gunna be just fine. I’d love to actually meet you and shake your hand or something, have the utmost respect for you and what you do every day for all of us, and I’m sure I speak for all of us when I say, without you, we’d be lost, thank you!” — Anonymous, Australia
“About a year ago, OCD hit me hard! Like a punch in the face! Then God miraculously brought into my life a friend who was going through OCD in the same way, at the same time, and she pointed me to Shannon’s Facebook page. Finding his encouragement has truly been monumental in my battle with OCD. I’m so thankful! Whether it’s becoming more knowledgeable about this awful disease, finding encouragement or asking personal questions seeking support and help, Shannon Shy is a Godsend and truly a blessing to those fighting to slay the dragon that is OCD. A million times thank you! “ An anonymous Wife and Mommy of 4
Excerpts from the Foreword of “Hope Is On Your Side: A Motivational Journal for Those Affected by Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.” (Tate Publishing)
“Raw inspiration, Shannon Shy is a pilot in daily motivation. Sleeves rolled up, he targets the challenge right back with positive power. Our inner dialog is constantly running. Shannon’s daily messages engineered my resilience, and transformed every aspect of my life.” —Mee Rhorer, Napa, California, OCD Recovery and Awareness Coach (Facebook page)
“Shannon Shy not only exemplifies how an individual can battle OCD victoriously, he also inspires us all to help others who are living in the moment of the OCD struggle. Shannon’s daily inspirations capture the realistic fight one experiences when in an OCD cycle— almost as if he is right there with us as our shield. Knowing his OCD meditations will be there everyday helps us to remember we are not alone, and his encouragement gives us strength to not give up. Shannon truly encompasses an individual who overcame a debilitating adversity and has chosen to use his experience to give others hope, support, and a realistic view of what it is like to live successfully with OCD. His daily inspirations have been a blessing to many including myself on many dark days, and I am honored to call him my colleague and my friend.” —Chrissie Hodges, Mental Health Advocate/ Speaker, The Stigma of Mental Illness Radio Host
“OCD is painfully isolating. Anyone who is not a sufferer cannot ever really comprehend the hell of the stuck record in your mind. At its worst you can easily forget that this mental health issue is relatively common. Shannon’s words have served to remind me that I am never alone. He is dedicated to fighting this beast with all sufferers. I have never met Shannon, but was fortunate to stumble across his Facebook page and book. He has been key to my recovery. Giving me strength, hope and inspiration. This relative ‘stranger’ and his words have been the hand I needed to pull me out of some very dark places. I am now able to call myself a recovered sufferer. Shannon’s words played a key part in my ability to make that statement.” —Laura, Wiltshire, England, United Kingdom
“Shannon’s daily messages have taught me so many things when it comes to battling and DEFEATING OCD! But among all of the many things Shannon’s messages have especially taught me is that having OCD does NOT make one a weak person. The fact of Shannon being a formidable U.S. Marine and an athlete has illustrated to me that suffering from OCD does not make you a weak individual, which I perceived myself as in the past for having OCD (before reading Shannon’s message). He has shown to me, on the contrary, that surviving OCD makes each of us a strong, yet compassionate, human being! Shannon not only helped me with my OCD, but has inspired me to help others who are afflicted with this terrible disorder. Bless you Shannon, I am forever grateful to you.” —Richard Amato, Bergen County, New Jersey (near New York City)
“Shannon’s messages give me the courage and determination to beat OCD. The daily fight can be overwhelming and exhausting. So many times I have wanted to give up, but when I check Shannon’s page there is always an inspirational message waiting for me, reminding me that I can beat OCD. This gives me the strength to keep moving forward past all the doubt and anxiety.” —Jenn Coward, Brockville, Ontario, Canada
“Shannon’s words have been truly uplifting and amazing. When I thought I couldn’t cope with some of the OCD I’ve been struggling with, I look at Shannon’s words and his inspiration gets me through the day. He puts everything into perspective and helps me so much. I’m grateful to you Shannon. Thanks for all your help!!! I know he can make anybody overcome their OCD and fears!!! Thank you Shannon you are true inspiration!!!!” —Ilana Tarren Cohen, Johannesburg, South Africa