“Genuine curiosity drives the passion I have for my work.”

My name is Dr. Jennifer Franklin, and I’m a psychologist by trade and anthropologist by nature. Genuine curiosity drives the passion I have for my work with adult individuals and couples. As I come to understand who each client is as a unique whole human being, I individualize my approach to maximize the effectiveness of the therapeutic experience.


My interest in becoming a psychologist was inspired by my own personal experience of healing from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Once I’d recovered, I began to work with people with IBS while completing my licensure hours as a psychological assistant in Los Angeles. From there, I started receiving referrals from physicians for other kinds of functional medical problems like heat arrhythmia, tinnitus, and uncontrollable eye twitching. By the time I was licensed and in private practice, I had developed a specialty in helping people with functional medical problems.

Upon relocating to North Carolina from California I had the opportunity to work with Douglas Drossman, MD, a pioneer for the treatment of functional gastrointestinal disorders, at the world-renowned UNC Center for Functional GI & Motility Disorders at UNC Healthcare in Chapel Hill, NC, with patients suffering from severe disorders of gut-brain interaction. I continue to work in collaboration with physicians of all specialties from UNC, Duke, and other private clinics to help their patients to heal.


When I initially began working with clients in 2001, I was interested in working with all kinds of different issues that people experience, not just functional medical problems. For a list of all of the different issues I treat, click here to be taken to the general Open Door Therapy website list of my specialty areas.

Early in my career, I was supervised by the prolific Thomas C. Greening, PhD, former Editor of the Journal of Humanistic Psychology (JHP), and became an Associate Editor for the JHP while working as a psychotherapist prior to licensure. I have reviewed manuscripts for other professional psychological journals as well.

Over the years I have taught mindfulness meditation, co-led groups, given talks on healing from functional gastrointestinal problems, and have written several short articles on a wide range of topics.


I was personally diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) as a teenager and suffered greatly for several years. Through my personal journey, I became symptom-free and was inspired to offer others the kind of guidance that supports not only symptom-management and reduction but also the kind of genuine healing that leads to a fully-functioning life.

My healing process began when I was referred by my gastroenterologist to a psychologist for weekly therapy. Though I resisted, I became so desperate for relief that I finally yielded to the idea that perhaps it would help. And it did. After just one year of weekly therapy with a psychologist, my symptoms ameliorated significantly.

Later, while training to become a psychologist, my exposure to a variety of approaches, modalities, and experiences led me to the realization that though I was better, I still hadn’t fully healed. I was still tolerating IBS symptoms and living in constant fear. By addressing these residual symptoms, I transitioned into a life free of symptoms, free of fear, and free of avoidance behaviors. My life didn’t just go back to the way things were before I developed IBS; it became even better than it had ever been!