Seattle Geek* Therapy

I'd also like you to meet Nugget.

Nugget is my service dog-slash-Falcor. In 2007, my health care providers and I realized that my chronic health condition was not improving in spite of all of our best efforts and it was time to investigate other options. 

Nugget and I met in February, 2009 at Brigadoon Service Dogs in Bellingham, Washington. Nugget picked me, and we completed a team training in August, 2009.  I got better enough to be back at work, eventually full-time, with Nugget at my side.

Mad props to Brad Kevelin at Adonis Photography of Seattle for the headshots.


Nugget is too good to keep all to myself, so in 2014 we completed PetPartners therapy team training. We continue to learn and explore animal assisted therapy, and animal assisted activities and how they benefit the therapy process.

While Nugget is with me every day, you are not required to interact with her or use animal assisted therapy in our work together. If you are afraid, allergic, have religious or cultural reasons to not be in the room with a dog, please let me know so we can come up with options.

As a young child, my brother, sister, and I would play explorers. While they were fighting off aliens, I was collecting and testing soil and air samples. At the tender age of seven I read a Ripley's Believe It or Not! book that included a chapter on spontaneous human combustion. I lived with that fear until I was a sophomore in college. Our dorm had cable TV, and I caught an episode of In Search Of with Leonard Nemoy. Spock saved me from my childhood neurosis!

I like to knit Doctor Who and Hogwarts  scarves, and sew blinky lights into clothing. Knitting brought me back to math. Learning how to solder at a local maker space combined with the need to have a constructive response to living in the Pacific Ring of Fire eventually lead me to get a HAM radio license. 

Like my colleague Kate Reeves (Therapy for Geeks) I am also a self-avowed Whovian and Browncoat. I skill-swapped with a kid friend. She taught me how to play Minecraft, and I taught her how to bake chocolate chip cookies.

Hi there.  

My name is Robin DeBates. I am a licensed independent clinical social worker (LICSW) in the state of Washington, and have an added Child Mental Health Specialist (CMHS) designation.

I never intended to be one of "those" people who told others how to parent their kids without being a parent themselves. It feels very much like working with youth and families chose me. One of the strengths I bring to this work is a clear advocacy for children and youth without creating opposition in parents and caregivers.

My work has included a variety of settings from emergency rooms and managing a domestic violence shelter to residential treatment programs, crisis outreach services for adults and youth, private practice, working with military families, and primary care behavioral health in a community health center in one of the most diverse zip codes of the country.

Seattle Geek* Therapy