About Vernay Justice-Royster

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Clinical Supervisor
San Diego and Telehealth

Vernay Justice-Royster

Becoming a Relationship Therapist

Tony Robbins Quote: “Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.”

Having experienced my own turning point in 2002, I have a passion and unique perspective to help others struggling with addiction. Recovery is not something that you can do alone. Learning what led to unhealthy decisions and recognizing that addiction is a disease rather than a moral deficiency are key fundamentals to starting your journey to recovery. This can help lift the burden addiction brings and provide the sense of freedom and clarity you have been searching for.

As part of my own journey, I have made helping others with addiction a career goal. Every day I look forward to and find great reward in helping others find that moment of clarity and start their journey to recovery. I find joy in working with individuals, couples, and families as they experience the sweet relief healing recovery brings.

Counseling Philosophy

It is my belief that effective therapy requires an authentic human connection. It requires that all involved are both physically and emotionally present and have the courage to be vulnerable.

Healing happens within the therapeutic relationship.  The relationship can only be cultivated when a person feels safe, fully accepted, unconditionally supported, and that the other person truly has his/her best interest at heart.

These are my responsibilities as a therapist. I take them seriously and genuinely see my work as an honor; an opportunity to walk with people through their deepest struggles, sit with them in profound pain, experience the unique joys and challenges of life, and the glorious success through healing experiences.  It is truly a pleasure.

My Counseling Style and Strengths

I am a compassionate, non-judgmental, and genuinely caring therapist.  I believe in treating all people with respect, dignity, and acceptance, no matter what.

I enjoy building on my clients’ strengths and watching them thrive. My clients describe me as authentic, down-to-earth, supportive & welcoming. I am also known to hold people accountable so they can generate change.

I am a solution-focused therapist who loves working with clients who are motivated for change and getting to where the rubber meets the road.


Professional Counseling Background

My experience includes working as a behavioral health counselor and managing the substance use disorders program for a primary care clinic in San Diego helping those living with HIV. At the clinic, I work primarily with the LGBTQI population and provide couples counseling for those struggling with substance use disorder, Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) for those struggling with alcohol, methamphetamine, and opiate use disorders, and smoking cessation counseling for those looking to gain long-term abstinence from nicotine addiction.

I have worked in the field of mental health for almost two decades.  I also have experience working in Outpatient Drug and Alcohol Treatment, an inpatient psychiatric hospital, managing a residential drug and alcohol treatment program.

Professional Therapist Credentials and Training

Professional Trainings

  • SBIRT (Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment)
  • Advanced Motivational Interviewing
  • Seeking Safety - A model to address Substance Use Disorder and Trauma
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
  • Gottman Method of Relationship Therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Professional Credentials

  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Board of Behavioral Sciences
  • Licensed Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor, CCAPP
  • Internationally Certified Substance Abuse Professional, Department of Transportation, CCAPP
  • Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist, Mayo Clinic
  • Nationally Certified Advanced Clinical Interventionist Professional, Addiction Academy (NCACIP)

Make Today the Day!

It all starts with a free personalized phone consultation.
Take the first step. Feel better!

Schedule a 15-minute Phone consultation.

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