In my work with individuals and families, I use an ecological (person-in-environment) and family systems approach. This framework takes into account a person’s functioning within a family or community, and how the system influences the individual. Within this framework, I use methods based in several different theoretical orientations (such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy, Play Therapy, etc.), and I believe it is important for me to adapt my methods to what best suits the people with whom I am working. I am also trained and qualified to do EMDR (see www.emdria.org for more information) and Lifespan Integration therapies. Many issues are situation-specific and may be addressed with short-term therapy (3 to 6 months). Many issues require longer term therapy (more than 6 months) in order to explore more complex issues. Frequency of therapy may also determine length of therapy. Weekly is recommended at least to begin.
I regard the process of therapy as a collaboration between therapist and client. Clients are expected to take an active role in our work together. We each bring our unique strengths, insights and experiences to the explorations of the problem and the finding of solutions. I encourage dialogue about the process of therapy and am happy to explain my rationale for any ideas or interventions I might share or suggest. Any questions about my education, experience and methods of practice, are welcomed.
Counseling sometimes involves discussing unpleasant aspects of your life, and you could experience feelings of sadness, guilt, anger, frustration, loneliness and helplessness. As you learn more about yourself, your relationships with others may change. Counseling can also lead to greater self-awareness, better relationships, and solutions to specific problems. I encourage you to talk with me about the negative as well as the positive feelings that you experience in counseling sessions.
I have more than 25 years experience working in this field, and I enjoy working with children, teens and adults.
I received my Bachelor of Arts from the University of Washington in 1991 in Psychology with an emphasis in Sociology. I received my Masters degree in Social Work (MSW) from the University of Washington in 1995. I am licensed with the state of Washington as a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW). I have been practicing in the mental health field since 1991, working with adolescents, children, families and adults on a wide variety of issues. I started my private practice in 2002.
Some of the settings in which I have worked include community mental health; school based mental health; crisis intervention services; divorce and custody; Child Protective Services; and group homes for teens with behavioral issues. Some of the issues with which I have the most experience are depression, anxiety, parenting, feeding issues (ages 0 to 5), and trauma.
My approach is collaborative and compassionate. I was once asked, "What is the one problem you see in the world today?" I quickly responded with: "Listening...people need to be heard, but it is hard to find people who will listen."
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