I hold a Master's
of Science Degree in Counseling with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from San Francisco State University and a Bachelor's
Degree in Communication Studies from Florida State University. I am a licensed marriage and family therapist registered with the California Board of Behavioral Services and a member of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists.
My academic, personal, and
professional path has provided me with a solid foundation to work with
people toward strengthening resilience and moving toward positive change. It
is my belief that we are, first and foremost, relational beings. As a
therapist, I view my clients through a strength-based lens that always takes into account the
context in which they have lived and currently live. When working with
clients I always strive to gain a meaningful, collaborative, and trusting
connection throughout our time together. It is within this meaningful
relationship that I have gotten the pleasure to take part in transformative and healing changes.
I work with adults, young adults, adolescents and families who have a desire to lead happier, healthier lives. My practice integrates the extensive training and experience I have with attachment theory and the Hakomi Method. I have completed both the Hakomi Attending to Attachment Training and the Hakomi Professional Training. I infuse the practices I have learned with clients in each session to the extent that is fitting for each individual's specific needs. It integrates neuroscience, psychological, and spiritual sources. By using the present moment experience and a person's whole body as a resource in therapy, I have found lasting and transformative changes occur.
I have extensive training and clinical experience in working with substance abusing adults and young people, as well as those affected by drug addiction and alcoholism of loved ones. I am passionate about helping people find their own path toward recovery. I have a great deal of knowledge about addiction, the brain, and coping strategies. I have facilitated several educational, process, and family groups with people in various stages of recovery. I have worked under Marin County's Office of Education where I frequently gave presentations to young people in local high schools about addiction, tobacco prevention and cessation, alternative coping strategies, and the effects of substances on the human condition. I often find it valuable to bring this information on an individualized basis to my clients who are self-medicating or using faulty coping mechanisms.
I have had the pleasure of working with adolescents in local Marin high
schools through Bay Area Community Resources (BACR). I have found there is a mutual connection between teens and
myself that allows my work with this age group to be extremely fruitful and
growth-enhancing. Teens are often very resistant to receiving help and guidance from adults. Connecting with teens can be difficult which leads many therapists to shy away from this population. I empathize with and understand the adolescent condition in a profound way. Fortunately, my passion and knowledge of their experience shines through, and it has been my experience that my young clients feel understood, and most importantly accepted for who they are. It is a privilege to say that I have had great success in working with families and teens toward living in harmony with one another.
Adolescence is often a very emotionally intense period of development, both personally and relationally. This stage of coming into adulthood often leaves young people stuck
in a state of confusion, anger, sadness, stress, and inadequacy. Coping strategies for dealing with new feelings and situations are beginning to develop, and, unfortunately, I have seen many
teens reach for maladaptive coping strategies such as cutting, drugs, alcohol,
gangs, shutting down, sexually acting out, and choosing to hang out and be in relationship with peers that do not
bring out the best in them. All of this, in addition to family stress that may be a result of being a child of divorce, competition among siblings, and other common family difficulties can be more than they can deal with on their own. It continues to be a pleasure and an honor to help young people better understand themselves and develop healthier ways of dealing with life's difficulties.
Undoubtedly one of the best aspects of my job is to help people reconnect with themselves and others. The therapeutic setting helps you try out new ways of perceiving yourself and relating to those around you. It gives us the space to move away from our outdated methods of communication and try more fitting ways that are more in alignment with who we are today. While this can undoubtedly be a difficult endeavor to embark on, the rewards can be enormously beneficial and healing. I look forward to helping you or your loved one find relief and peace.