About Dr. Bender...

Marni Bender, Ph.D.

Congratulations!

Most likely, you are visiting this site because you would like to improve your life in some way. This is an admirable goal considering that it can be hard to ask for help, especially when we need it most. Remember that regardless of what you’ve been through, you have been resilient enough to make it this far and just by considering therapy you have taken the first step to improvement. 


Therapy can be exciting, but it can also seem awkward or scary if you are new to it or have never opened up about certain things before. While collaborating with you in your pursuit of personal growth and emotional health, I will always be down-to-earth, honest, and respectful.  I will also strive to create a warm, accepting, and judgement-free environment to help you feel safe and comfortable.


My ultimate goal is to help you reach your goals and ensure that you have the insight and tools you need to intentionally choose how you want to exist in your relationships, work, and community. To this end, I will be flexible, pragmatic, and creative to help you benefit as much as possible from therapy. 


I welcome your call if you have any questions or would like to set up an appointment.

Credentials & Experience

I am a licensed clinical psychologist, in private practice since 2005. I received my doctorate in clinical psychology from Georgia State University, and completed my internship and postdoctoral training at Grady Hospital and Emory University School of Medicine. I have supervised therapists in training and worked at the Atlanta Veterans Administration Hospital (VA). I receive ongoing training and education to refine and expand my knowledge and expertise. Additionally, I have a MBA degree and previously worked as a CPA and business consultant.  

Speciality Areas

I provide individual, couples, and family therapy for adults and older adolescents. As a generalist, I can treat a wide variety of problems and concerns. However, I specialize in the following areas:    

  • Relationships (including couples therapy and premarital counseling)
  • Trauma (childhood physical, sexual, emotional abuse & neglect; intimate partner abuse; assault, accidents, etc.)
  • Depression (mild to severe)
  • Anxiety (general worry, social anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive/compulsive behaviors, issues with avoidance or control)
  • Attention (distraction and concentration difficulties)
  • General Stress (life transitions, grief, loss, shame, sleep problems) 
  • Work/Life Balance 
  • Executive Coaching 

Therapeutic Approach

I was trained by renowned psychologists in traditional psychotherapy and by current researchers in modern therapy approaches. I draw on all of this training and my other diverse experiences to integrate and tailor my approach to you based on your individual needs. The specific modalities I use are:   ·


  • psychodynamic 
  • family systems 
  • interpersonal 
  • cognitive-behavioral “CBT” 
  • humanistic/existential
  • dialectical behavioral “DBT”
  • Acceptance & Commitment “ACT” 
  • mindfulness   


In simpler terms, I am non-judgmental, empathic, and respectful of our natural coping mechanisms, strengths, and resilience. I believe that healthy relationships are a cornerstone to happy and fulfilled lives and I am committed to understanding and nurturing them. I also believe that both acceptance and change are important, that it is helpful to approach life with a sense of humor, and that balance in all areas is essential to emotional well-being. Additionally, I believe that we must appreciate diversity and understand the contexts we operate in (family, community, society) in order to fully understand ourselves.   


At different times in our work together you may see me as your consultant, confidant, teacher, guide, cheerleader, encourager, challenger, rock, comforter or coach. Remember, excellent athletes have coaches, which is, in part, why they excel.  I would love be on your team helping you grow into your best self.

Practice Information

Hours & Availability

I am in the office to see clients Monday through Friday and do not offer weekend appointments. My hours vary and are subject to availability. I encourage you to contact me directly to discuss scheduling options.   

Regarding Insurance

If you wish to use your insurance benefits, I will provide you with a superbill, which is a receipt for your payments that includes all the codes and information required by insurance companies. You can submit this to your insurance company for reimbursement based on your out-of-network benefits. I am happy to help you with this but all plans are different and I encourage you to verify your coverage directly with your insurance company if this is important to you.   

The Next Steps

Call me or send me an email! I’d be glad to help you decide if I am the right therapist for you.


(404) 518-1018 

DrBender@ThriveCenter.com


111 N. McDonough St.

Decatur, GA 30030




Forms for Your First Appointment

Please complete the forms below and bring them to your first appointment. Don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.