Many of us are no strangers to mental health issues, especially while living through a variety of global economic changes, pandemic lockdowns, and drastically changing political climates. Seeking help and wellness has been a huge center of discussion in many aspects in our lives and is now – more than ever – very openly advocated for, communicated, and shedding its undeserved stigma. For those looking for a mental health therapist or nutritionist in the Montclair area, we’ve got you covered. We took a look at Blue Counseling and Wellness Center located at 1 Upper Mountain Avenue in Montclair to share with you some local treatment and services that can help you take control of common mental health difficulties such as anxiety and depression, family conflict, sex therapy, and nutritional services. Read on to learn more about Blue Counseling and Wellness Center, Nutrition and Mental Health Counseling.
(Photo credits: @bluewellnessctrnj)
About Blue Counseling & Wellness Center
Chanta Blue, LCSW, CST and Chesney Blue, MPH, RDN are sisters and co-owners of Blue Counseling and Wellness Center located at 1 Upper Mountain Avenue in Montclair. The sisters opened Blue Counseling and Wellness Center, also known as BCWC, with a mission to “empower, educate, support, and guide individuals, couples, and families who are looking to transform their lives,” according to the website.
A study conducted by WebMD and published by Wake Forest University found that fewer than 10% of Black Americans get mental health counseling or treatment despite being more likely to grapple with feelings of sadness, worthlessness, and despair. Chanta and Chesney grew up in a predominantly Black community and have always felt that there were “very few resources for Black folks that cater to our holistic selves.”
“Growing up, our parents showed us good examples of being of service to each other and to people in the community. I started volunteering at an early age by working with my church’s food pantry,” Chesney Blue told MG. “I think our [mutual interest in helping people] comes from just watching our parents be of service to the community.”
Chanta and Chesney Blue grew up in East Orange and on the campus of Bloomfield College, where their mother had worked for over 30 years.
“When we were looking for a location for our practice, we wanted something that was accessible to the surrounding communities, particularly for East Orange and Newark, but also where we know therapy and nutrition services and wellness services are valued,” Chanta Blue told The Montclair Girl.
“Our goal at BCWC is to be able to provide services that support the body, mind, and spirit while also considering the various institutional systems we must navigate to improve our well being,” said Chesney Blue.
Both Chanta and Chesney Blue have extensive backgrounds in their respective fields.
Chesney Blue, MPH, RDN, is BCWC’s dietitian/nutritionist with a philosophy that good nutritional health does not equate to body size. She said, “We are all individuals and we don’t promote a one-size-fits-all counseling approach.”
“I went into the field because I didn’t see a lot of people who looked like me and the people I grew up with,” Chesney told The Montclair Girl. “I knew and learned that nutrition is very vital for good overall well-being and wellness.”
Chesney received her Bachelors of Science degree in Nutritional Sciences from Howard University in Washington, D.C. and went on to complete her dietetic internship at the University of Medicine and Dentistry at what is now Rutgers University. With over 15 years of experience in the nutrition industry, Chesney recently served as president of the New Jersey Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which is the largest organization for food and nutrition professionals in the state of New Jersey. You can read more about Chesney Blue and her background here.
Blue Counseling and Wellness Center nutrition services include nutrition therapy and counseling for individuals, families, and couples as well as corporate wellness and educational seminars. Nutrition therapy and counseling packages include a comprehensive initial nutrition assessment, follow-up visits, two-week meal plan, and food journaling guidance. BCWC specializes in helping women’s health, weight management, bariatric nutrition, diabetes, digestive disorders, along with many more areas. You can view more information regarding nutrition services, including rates, here.
“I just want to make sure that receiving nutrition counseling is obtainable and not just for ‘wealthy people who can afford it,” Chesney told us. “I try to make sure that people have access to a dietitian who gets them, who knows them, who won’t judge them, and who will be respectful in regards to improving their overall health.”
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(Photo credits: @bluewellnessctrnj)
Chanta Blue MSW, MEd., LCSW, SSW, CST, is a sex and relationship therapist, licensed clinical social worker, author, and speaker. With an undergraduate degree in Psychology with a minor in Child Development from Spelman College in Atlanta, G.A., a Master’s of Social Work from Rutgers University, and her Master’s of Education in Human Secuality from Widener University, Chanta has been providing psychotherapy to a variety of ages for over 10 years. Chanta is “in love with love,” and believes that “everyone needs and deserves love. Whether it’s from a caring parent, a supportive partner, or a cherished friend, love can help conquer some of the biggest battles life throws your way.” You can read more about Chanta’s background here.
Blue Counseling and Wellness center has a wide variety of therapy services that can help address issues in anxiety, depression, family conflict, pre-marital concerns, adjustment to major life changes, and more. With a large selection of services to choose from, such as individual therapy, consultation calls, relationship and family therapy, group therapy, and corporate workshops, you’ll be sure to find a service that perfectly matches your needs.
Chanta Blue is also the author of For Colored Girls Who Need a Break When Being a Super Woman is Just Too Much, which is “designed for all self-identified women of color to help you learn to sit down somewhere and take a break.” This guided journal and coloring book is for “womxn and femmes of color who are always serving others and are looking to take a moment to themselves and reflect on the meaningful relationships in their life.”
Currently, Chanta is the Co-Founder and Director of Therapeutic Services at BCWC. She works with “womxn of color and folks in romantic relationships who are interested in improving their self-esteem, experiencing sexual difficulties, and premartial counseling.”
“Sex therapy is a type of talk therapy that’s designed to help individuals and couples address medical, psychological, personal, or interpersonal factors impacting sexual satisfaction”, according to Healthline.
“We deal with a large range of sexuality related issues that clients may come into,” said Chanta Blue via her YouTube channel. “ From sexual dysfunctions, such as pain during sex and erectile disfunction, to low desire, to sexual expression and sexual identity – we definitely explore and help folks advocate for their own sexual needs in the bedroom.”
“Especially me,” Chanta went on to explain, “I deal with a lot of women who may not know how to express themselves in the bedroom. They may want to do some fun or ‘kinky’ stuff with their partners, but they’re afraid that their partners might shame them or judge them.”
(Photo credits: @bluewellnessctrnj)
“I like to help my clients advocate for themselves in the bedroom so that they can communicate with their partners and talk about what it is that [they] like or don’t like.”
Sex therapy comes in a variety of forms including individual services, relationship therapy, or group coaching for throuples and polysystems.
You can also shop Blue Counseling and Wellness Center’s Naturally Kinky collection, which is designed for Black women who aren’t or are learning how to not be afraid of their sexuality. All proceeds from these sales go towards providing mental health services for individuals with a financial need.
Chanta Blue will be hosting her Black Girls Munch this July. This event focuses on aiding women in reducing shame related to their sexuality and connecting with and learning from other women who enjoy kink and BDSM lifestyles.
“I wanted to create a space that centered Blackness, specifically around, Black women and femmes,” Chanta Blue told The Montclair Girl. “Folks can come learn more about BDSM/kink and alternate love styles that are out there.”