Meet Dr. Patricia S. Brawner, PhD

I’m Dr. Patricia S. Brawner, PhD, Licensed Psychologist.


I’m an experienced marriage and couples counseling therapist. For more than 25 years, I have been counseling couples of all kinds – married, committed relationships, LGBT – in my private practice in Athens, GA. Athens is an hour from Atlanta, GA and is then home of the University of Georgia. I have a PhD in Clinical Psychology, a Certificate in Marriage and Family Therapy and I’m a licensed psychologist in the State of Georgia.

My background. I grew up on dairy farm in a small agrarian community in South Carolina. While it was far from idyllic, I owe a lot of my grounded-ness and my strong work ethic to that experience. I learned from the best how to be a straight shooter who cuts right to the chase. I went to college at Clemson University where I intended to exit as a veterinarian; while there, my focus changed from the well-being of animals to that of people and I finished with a B.A. in Political Science/Economics. I began my foray into psychology in 1981 when I was awarded a Masters Degree in Counseling at the University of Georgia. I took that degree and for several years worked with preteens/teens in a school system as a guidance counselor and later in a psychiatric hospital. I then returned to graduate school at the University of Georgia and completed a PhD program in Counseling Psychology. I became aware of my keen interest and aptitude for working with couples during my tenure at UGA and earned a Certificate in Marriage and Family Therapy, as well. I have taken advance courses in the Gottman Method.

I am now the divorced mom of three young adult children, a boy and twin girls. As a mother and half-owner of a failed marriage, I understand the stresses and pressures that you may very well feel right now, because I’ve experienced it. I understand and know first hand how couples get so involved in ‘taking care of business’ that they forget to take care of themselves as individuals and as a couple. So one day you wake up and wonder, who is that person and why is he/she in bed with me?

My practice. I entered private practice in 1991 as a licensed psychologist in Athens, GA, and began working with individuals and couples of all ages and ethnicities. I have remained in private practice since that time at Athens Area Psychotherapy and I have treated countless couples for a wide variety of problems and concerns. I launched my Couples Intensive Weekend Retreats for Relationship Renewal in 2009 to offer a more profound therapy experience for couples in crisis or those who may have tried traditional marriage counseling, but are not getting the results that they desire.

The work I do with couples is very important to me. I derive great pleasure from getting to know the couples with whom I work, the energy couples bring to therapy and the sense of satisfaction I feel when good work is done. My experience with couples has brought me to an unwavering belief in a couples’ ability to grow and change, and to be best friends and lovers.

My professional associations include membership in the American Psychological Association, the Georgia Psychological Association and the Athens Area Psychological Association.

You can contact me via email here.


Dr. Patricia S. Brawner, PhAthens, GA psychologist conducts couples intensive weekend retreats for relationship renewal
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