Leigh Riazi, LICSW

Leigh Riazi

Licensed Clinical Social Worker, LICSW

Accepting new clients for daytime appointments with a 2-3 week wait



Young adults / college students (18 - 24)

Specialties & expertise

  • College student challenges
  • Navigating post-college life
  • Improving coping skills
  • Self-esteem building
  • Relationship challenges
  • Personal growth
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Existential challenges
  • Life transitions
  • Grief and loss
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Personality disorders
  • Substance abuse related to dual diagnosis

Professional statement

Leigh Riazi is a clinical social worker with expertise in mood disorders, anxiety, existential challenges, relationships, life transitions, and self-esteem. Many of her clients are college students or recent college grads navigating post-college life.

Leigh primarily uses existential therapy and interpersonal therapy to help clients understand how they relate to the world, identify patterns in relationships, and process grief and loss. She has a warm, outgoing therapeutic style and challenges clients with care and compassion to live a more meaningful and authentic life. Leigh strives to help clients cultivate personal growth, improve coping skills, and increase insight associated with interpersonal relationships and behavioral patterns.

Leigh received her MSW from Boston University. Prior to starting private practice, she worked as a therapist at Butler Hospital and Rhode Island Hospital.


Anxiety – Generalized anxiety, social anxiety, panic attacks
Bipolar disorder – Using coping and preventive strategies to stabilize swings between elevated mood or irritability and depressive episodes
Depression – Sleep and energy disruption, overall mood disturbance, inability to enjoy yourself, and difficulty being motivated, amongst many other symptoms
Existential challenges – Transitioning from college to adulthood; questioning purpose, existence; finding one’s path and voice; using existential therapy to understand how one relates to the world, identify patterns in relationships, and process grief and loss
Life transitions – Particular specialty in college to adulthood transition; adjusting to college, new relationships, career transitions and direction; mid-life existential, relationship, and career challenges
Personality disorders – Grounding individuals from their thoughts; increasing understanding of how clients are interacting with others and helping them gain a better understanding of the relationship and barriers they have in interpersonal relations; understanding the impact of past experiences from childhood on current self doubt and other challenges

General expertise

Grief and loss – Working through any significant loss, past or recent
Self-esteem – Cultivate stronger sense of self; increase assertiveness, confidence, and self-compassion
Substance abuse related to dual diagnosis – Prevent and reduce challenges related to tobacco, marijuana, and/or alcohol, such as anxiety, depression, and challenges in relationships


  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Brown University Student Insurance (United Health)
  • Johnson & Wales University (United Health)
  • Providence College (United Health)
  • RISD Student Insurance (United Health)
  • Tufts
  • United Health
  • URI / University of Rhode Island Student Insurance (United Health)

Out-of-pocket fees

  • Initial sessions: $180/session (60min)
  • Ongoing sessions: $110 session (45min)

Sliding scale: A sliding scale down to $130 for intake evaluations (60min) and $70 for ongoing sessions (45min) is available for clients who cannot afford Leigh's typical fees.

Message to clients

"I'm so glad you have decided to reach out for support. Although this is likely a difficult and challenging time in your life, I hope you can view it as an opportunity for personal growth and potential change in your relationships with those around you. I want this space to be one where you feel heard, supported, and valued, and I hope that you're able to share your deepest thoughts, feelings, and experiences with me."

Treatment approaches

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)In cognitive behavioral therapy, you work with a therapist in a structured way, attending a limited number of sessions. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps you become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking, so you can view challenging situations more clearly and respond to them in a more effective way. (learn more)
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a cognitive behavioral treatment that often used to treat disorders such as substance dependence, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), eating disorders, and particularly chronic borderline personality disorder. It teaches skills such as mindfulness, pain tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and emotional regulation. (learn more)
Existential Therapy Existential therapy is a therapy approach that both embraces human potential and recognizes human limitation. The breadth of existential theory falls into four major themes, which it sees as the root of most psychological problems: 1) Death, 2) Freedom (& Responsibility), 3) Isolation, and 4) Meaninglessness. (learn more)
Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)Interpersonal Therapy (IPT) is a time-limited psychotherapy that focuses on interpersonal issues, which are understood to be a factor in the genesis and maintenance of psychological distress. The targets of IPT are symptom resolution, improved interpersonal functioning, and increased social support. (learn more)
Mindfulness PracticesMindfulness practices include but are not limited to developing awareness, attention, and remembering. In mindfulness-informed therapy, clients develop tools to become aware of what is occurring within and around them, so they can begin to untangle from mental preoccupations and difficult emotions. Self-acceptance and compassion are also core elements of mindfulness-informed therapy. (learn more)
Psychodynamic TherapyThe aim of psychodynamic therapy is to bring the unconscious mind into consciousness - helping individuals unravel, experience and understand their true, deep-rooted feelings in order to resolve them. It takes the view that our unconscious holds onto painful feelings and memories, and that the defenses we develop to ensure these difficult memories do not surface from our unconscious often do more harm than good. (learn more)
Supportive TherapySupportive psychotherapy is used primarily to reinforce a patient’s ability to cope with stressors by giving clients the opportunity to express their feelings and thoughts about the issues. Clinicians help patients learn how to move forward and make decisions or changes that may be necessary to adapt, either to an acute change, such as the loss of a loved one or severe disappointment, or to a chronic situation, such as an ongoing illness. (learn more)

Education and work experience

Private practice, 2017 - Present
Butler Hospital Integrated Therapies Program, Therapist, 2013 - Present
Rhode Island Hospital Partial Hospitalization Program, Therapist, 2012 - 2013
Barrington Middle School, School Social Work Intern, 2010 - 2011
East Bay Community Action Program, Health Advocate, 2009- 2011

Boston University, MSW, 2012
Providence College, BA, Social Work, 2003



Professional endorsements

Leigh is a very perceptive, kind, and heartfelt therapist who cares deeply about her clients. She is especially thoughtful and attentive to others.

What topic(s) would you refer clients to this therapist for? Post-partum depression and issues related to pregnancy; relationship issues; men’s issues; grief, loss, and existential concerns.
— Corey J. Flanders, LMHC (2017)
Leigh Riazi has extensive experience providing therapy that targets a range of clinical needs including: mood disorders, trauma, grief, personality disorders, self-esteem issues, substance abuse, and existential crises. Her empathic nature and attention to detail ensure that her clients feel supported and heard in their efforts to make change or cope better with the stressors in their daily lives.

What topic(s) would you refer clients to this therapist for? Anxiety, depression, postpartum, grief issues, trauma, self-esteem, communication/interpersonal skills
— Maura Vota, LMHC (2017)

Client testimonials

Since the day I met Leigh she has been nothing but compassionate and truly caring at a time when I needed it most. I clicked with her immediately and knew she was the right fit for me. She is very insightful and works at the pace you are comfortable with. She is incredibly knowledgable and individualizes your care to best fit your needs. Leigh continues to help me through grief/loss, depression, and anxiety in a way that I am extremely grateful.
— Female graduate student (2017)
I have been working with Leigh for a little over a year. She has helped me through the toughest time of my life. I went through a divorce and suffered greatly with the amount of time I was losing with my kids. She has taught me how to prioritize the time I do have with them and repair important relationships in my life.
— Active member of the community, Father of 2 (2017)