I am a California Licensed Clinical Social Worker with advanced post-graduate training in psychodynamic psychotherapy. I enjoy working with children and adolescents, as well as with adults and couples who are struggling with personal or interpersonal concerns related to their early attachment relationships. I talk a little about my approach below. Feel free to reach out and schedule a brief phone call or video session if you would like to talk about how I can help you or a loved one.
It is through play that children learn about themselves and their world, and so it is through play that they heal. Play, much like dreaming, affords access to developmental and integrative processes not otherwise available. It literally lights up the brain with the possibility for change. Play therapy is similar to play, in that it supports children in accessing their own intrinsic capacity to grow and develop, and different, in that the therapist’s role is to explicitly support the child in resolving present difficulties or past traumas. Because of its ability to utilize normal developmental processes in the service of healing, it is through play therapy that we can best help children develop increased regulatory capacities and a positive sense of self.
Therapy with Adolescents
Adolescence is a powerful time. Developmentally, teenagers are coming into their own. These are the years when they begin to consciously create their adult selves. It is a time to explore new identities and to take on new roles and responsibilities as they prepare to join society as adults. These transitions can be painful – as someone once said “I have to bump into the world so I know who I am.” For parents, it can be difficult to trust that they and their children will navigate this passage unscathed. For adolescents, the strong pull of peer culture, coupled with social media, can make it difficult to access a space to reflect on their experiences, weigh options, and make thoughtful decisions about who they are, what they believe, and where they are headed. Weekly talk or art therapy can be one such place.
Adults and Couples
Many of my adult clients, both couples and individuals,come into therapy as a result of dissatisfaction, or even pain, related to their ability to connect with others in a meaningful and satisfying way. Often, as we work together, they discover that their difficulties began as a solution they developed to cope with their early environment. Frequently, these solutions – which are really just compromises that were necessary at the time – no longer serve their adult selves well and have left them feeling cut off from others, or even from parts of themselves. Many of these individuals and couples struggle to experience and to express a full and balanced range of emotion. For these individuals, therapy provides a space to work mindfully with both past and present moment experience, which leads them to a deeper and more connected experience of themselves and others. This dual focus on past and present experience can be particularly powerful for those who find trauma poses a barrier to a developing and sustaining healthy connections with others
A little about me
My primary focus in therapy is on supporting the development of a greater capacity for awareness and integration in my clients, as this leads naturally to an increased, embodied sense of well-regulated well-being and supports healthy connections with others. In session, I use mindfulness to blend relational, interpretive, and somatic methodologies.