Goli Bellinger, MSW, LICSW, LCSW-C

Goli Bellinger

Goli Bellinger is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who works with couples and individuals experiencing relational or marital difficulties. She is particularly skilled in intervening during a crisis to stabilize major conflicts. She is a specialist in Relationship Enhancement©, a psycho-educational model that is based on empathy, validation, and structured dialogue. She has received training from several of the leading masters in the field of couples therapy and marriage education. In addition to holding a postgraduate certificate in trauma from Harvard University, she has considerable expertise in working with diverse immigrant populations and intercultural relationships.


Are you tired of having the same interpersonal conflicts over and over again? Do you wish you could say things that would be understood and appreciated, without negative consequences? I help people troubleshoot difficult conflicts and teach them how to work towards meaningful and realistic resolutions that address both you and your partner’s core concerns. I will help you better understand and further value yourself, as well as your loved ones. I aim to help you become more at ease and effective in your relationships, strengthening them as you work towards your life’s dreams.

Call 202-629-1949 ext 4 for a consult with Goli


I have several publications on the Relationship Enhancement model, an evidenced-based model which systematically teaches couples how to connect and problem solve in spite of significant differences.  I’ve been an innovator in this field by adapting western constructs of communication and problem solving and applying them to emotionally charged situations across cultures and languages.

I’ve had extensive training in working with couples directly from the leaders in the field, most significantly through Guerney’s Institute for the Development of Emotional and Life Skills(IDEALS) and the National Institute for Relationship Enhancement (NIRE), The Gottman Institute, and Steven Stosney’s Compassion Power Bootcamp.  I also serve as a board member of IDEALS/ NIRE.

As a mental health specialist, I have worked in multiple settings, from psychotherapy to program development to federal administration.  I really enjoy guiding people to work through problems and manage their various sources of stress, at any level.  I have always been an advocate for mental well-being and have developed numerous mental health resources for immigrant and refugee populations.   I am also a clinical social work adjunct instructor at the University of Maryland Baltimore School of Social Work.

In 2002, I received my Master’s in Social Work from the University of Maryland School of Social Work.  Ten years later, I taught my first graduate level course, after accepting the University’s invitation to create a course on clinical social work with immigrants.  I also have a post-graduate certificate in trauma and recovery from the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma.  I also bring extensive experience in conducting psychological assessments and providing forensic testimony for individuals seeking immigration relief.

My Specialties, Areas, and Interests


        • Improving communication and problem solving ability
        • Managing and diffusing conflict strategies
        • Navigating family conflict and expectations
        • Learning and managing cross-cultural conflicts
        • Negotiating traditional gender roles to fit your modern lifestyle
        • Providing premarital counseling and marriage education
        • Couples in crisis and considering separation

Mental Well-Being

        • Depression
        • Anxiety and panic attacks
        • Post-trauma stress
        • Stress management
        • Crisis Counseling


        • Intercultural and interracial relationships
        • Gay, Lesbian, or Transgender relationships
        • People facing illness and chronic health conditions
        • Dating and Pre-marital couples
        • Adults seeking family therapy with parents or siblings
        • Individuals needing therapy through interpreters or Farsi speakers

Important Life Experiences

I am Persian American and came to the United States at the age of seven.  I grew up in an environment with very little diversity, so as soon as I became a social worker, I moved to Washington DC (my home for the past 14 years).  Over the past ten years, I have grown significantly through my relationship with my American husband.   We both continue to learn from one another and try to embrace the richness that our combined cultures and vastly different communication styles bring.

I have traveled extensively around the world, from Mexico and South America, through Europe, the Middle East and the Far East.  My travels have further taught me how to adjust with ease in diverse circumstances, quickly identify solutions and manage crises.  I know how to see through the blinders that conflict creates and believe that working through conflicts is the key to establishing and building mutually satisfying long-term relationships.

Contact me for a free consultation so that we can talk about how we might be able to work together.   I look forward to talking with you.

Call 202-629-1949 ext 4 for a consult with Goli