Licensed Clinical Social Worker, LCSW
Accepting new clients for daytime appointments
Offers remote video sessions
Teenagers (13 - 18)
Young adults / college students (18 - 24)
Thu (phone or video sessions only): 10:00am-6:00pm
Specialties & expertise
Borderline personality disorder
Artists’ mental health
Sexual abuse and assault
Mike Cotayo is a psychotherapist in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York. He sees clients navigating addiction, trauma, and borderline personality disorder. He is also trained as a Gestalt therapist, grounded in the belief that healing happens when individuals look inwards.
Mike works from a strengths-based perspective, consistently reminding clients how much they have survived and normalizing their experiences and beliefs to help facilitate growth and cultivate hope. He also believes deeply in a client’s self-determination, respecting their choices throughout treatment and allowing them to take the lead on issues that arise, including whether or not to consider medication as an option.
Mike has worked extensively with individuals navigating addiction and recovery, drawing from motivational interviewing and harm reduction modalities to keep clients engaged and safe. Mike himself has been sober for over a decade and considers his personal history with addiction to be helpful in his work. Mike also enjoys working with clients with borderline personality disorder, helping individuals understand the impact their behaviors can have on their interpersonal relationships, educational attainment, and work-life. The goal is to help them explore how pervasive these issues are and how best to work through them.
Mike’s style blends sharp clinical skills with a keen sense of humor. He received his MSW from New York University and completed advanced training in Gestalt therapy. Mike identifies strongly with his social work training and has held positions in community settings working with individuals navigating substance use challenges, HIV, sexual violence, and borderline personality disorder. Mike is excited to welcome new clients to his practice, accessible by the 1, C, and E trains.
Borderline personality disorder – Support reducing emotional suffering and addressing relationship challenges
Artists’ mental health – Understanding of highly creative minds; goal setting related to the artistic and creative process; support finding meaningful balance in one’s life
HIV/AIDS – Addressing feelings of shame and remorse that can come along with this diagnosis
Couples counseling – Addressing relationship challenges and life transitions; strengthening communication and feelings of security, desire, connection, and love
Anxiety – Coping with excessive worry, nervousness, or stress; intense discomfort in social settings (social anxiety); sudden and intense feelings of panic (panic disorder)
Sexual abuse and assault – Caring support along the pathway to safety, wellbeing, and healing for survivors of sexual abuse and assault
Anger management – Addressing sudden outbursts of anger or sustained resentment; developing healthy anger expression and outlets
LGBTQIA and sexuality topics – Exploring topics of sexuality, gender, and identity; coping with discrimination and oppression; navigating relationship, family, and cultural challenges
Loss and grief – Emotionally preparing for the anticipated passing of a loved one; managing feelings and reactions to a death or loss of significance; support during the process of healing and acceptance
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – Healing painful experiences and memories from the past
Relationships – Understanding one’s wants and needs in relationships; exploring patterns of interaction, addressing concerns, and strengthening satisfaction in relationships and dating
Self-esteem – Cultivating self-compassion, assertiveness, and confidence; developing ways to reduce suffering, anxiety, social withdrawal, and self-neglect
Substance use – Reducing and preventing the negative impact of drug and alcohol use and addictions on physical, emotional, and relational health
Trauma – Coping and healing after threatening or scary events, such as witnessing accidents or experiencing sexual, verbal, emotional, or physical abuse
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Initial/ongoing sessions: $200
Sliding scale: A sliding scale of $100 - $200 is offered to clients who need a reduced fee to receive therapy.
Therapist's note: Michael can provide you with paperwork for your insurance company if you are seeking out-of-network reimbursement.
Message to clients
“Why am I the right therapist for you?
I am asked that question a lot. I think most people have this fear about what therapy is like, and many of these ideas are misconceptions or ideas they have gained from the media. What I have heard from most people who receive services from me are that I am very easy to talk to, and that it doesn’t seem like therapy, it seems like they are talking to someone who can really just listen to them, and help them with their problems.
Therapy should never feel like a chore, and it doesn’t have to be painful. When someone says to me, I’ve tried therapy before, and it didn’t work, I would say maybe they did not have the right therapist. Not everyone gels with everyone. Hopefully when we speak, you will find that it’s a good fit. I look forward to hearing from you!
Part of what makes me unique as a therapist is that I try to make therapy bearable for those who seem to have an aversion to it. When appropriate, I may crack a joke or two. Research has even shown that laughter in therapy can help to make the process more manageable, and to move the therapeutic process along quicker.
Please feel free to book a free ten-minute phone consultation below, or you can email me for an individual, couples or family therapy consultation today.”
Treatment approachesGestalt TherapyIn gestalt therapy, self-awareness is key to personal growth and developing full potential. The approach recognizes that sometimes this self-awareness can become blocked by negative thought patterns and behavior that can leave people feeling dissatisfied and unhappy. (learn more)
Education and work experience
Private Practice, 2007 - Present
NYU, MSW, 2000