I am a therapist who believes that being curious about oneself, the world, and how it operates is essential to a good life and I support individuals, couples, and families to draw on their own innate inquisitiveness in order to grow. One of the insights I took from my undergraduate study of philosophy that continues to influence my practice of therapy is an appreciation for how complex each person is and how many different—and often contradictory—views a single individual can hold. These varying views can become more complicated as couples and families seek to make decisions among these differences. I help patients gain more awareness about themselves, how they see the world, and how they interact with each other and the communities in which they live.
Previously providing therapy to adults and teens at the William Alanson White Institute, I understand there is no universal one-size-fits-all approach to therapy that will solve every form of suffering. While I see symptoms as a form of communication, I’m aware that attempting to quickly fix them with a band-aid solution doesn’t typically lead to long-term relief. Instead, I am passionate about coming to know every person, partner, or family member fully in order to develop an eclectic approach to therapy based on what they need. Before becoming a therapist, I also forged strong, supportive relationships with adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities without presumptions related to diagnoses or labels as a direct support provider. I take from that experience the necessity of remaining attentive to what an individual, couple, or family expresses in order to better uncover the emotional experiences that lie at the root of the symptoms causing pain.
Therapy with teens can be a rewarding experience as adolescents develop their own identities and engage with their newfound perspectives and opinions about their families, communities, and larger society. In addition to working with teens and collaborating with their parents at the White Institute, I also helped foster a sense of community and stronger social skills among teens at a nonprofit where I facilitated group meetings to address challenges in their lives. In both of these roles, I observed how teens may still have limited agency in key areas of their lives, whether in their families or at school. I understand the importance of building a trusting relationship with teens in which they can feel a sense of ownership and agency over their own therapy as they gain more independence.
I believe it is critical as a therapist to push through discomfort in order to effect change, including being able to discuss sometimes taboo topics involving race, class, gender, sexuality, sex, and privilege. Beyond my work as a therapist, I regularly engage in community mutual aid work and have discussions on these issues frequently while interacting with people from all walks of life. I’ve observed how these conversations and the vulnerability they require from all participants deepen mutual respect, as well as encourage greater understanding of others’ circumstances. As a therapist, I take the lasting impact of these discussions with me. In particular, I am open to the ways people’s different views and actions may be expressions of their culture and avoid immediately moving to pathologize or fix what may not fit into dominant cultural norms of how an individual is supposed to express themselves or how a couple or family must look or operate.