Psychotherapy is not easily defined. It can be a varied and dynamic experience depending on the personalities of the therapist and client, as well as the particular struggles, and concerns that are presented. There are many different methods I may use, including individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy. Regardless of the method or model used, my focus will always be on building a relationship of trust with each client, so they can feel empowered to explore and express their thoughts and feelings, be present and curious, and experience an authentic interaction with me.
Adult Individual Work
As individuals, adult and child alike, there are many roles we take on in our lives; parent, child, sibling, friend, professional, leader, teacher, student, explorer, dreamer, doer, and more. All of these roles require ever shifting relationships, expectations, and hard work. Most importantly they require a balancing act to get the joy and fulfillment our many roles can provide us. We rely on ourselves and others to achieve that balance, and it’s hard!!
I love working with individuals to identify what gets in their way of living the life they want, and helping them remove those obstacles as they discover new ways to think about themselves, and the way they interact in the world.
There are many who have struggled in punishing relationships, experiencing trauma and abuse of varying types and degrees. I strive to meet each individual where they are, and help them to a place of healing, and empowerment.
Therapy is an investment of your time, money, and efforts that can yield dividends of personal and relational growth that allow you to live the life you want, with people that you love.
The Co-Therapist Model
For the most part I practice couples therapy with a Co-therapist. Meaning I see couples with my co-therapist Fox Vernon, all four of us in the room together. This has proven to be the most effective and powerful way I have done therapy with couples. Each member of the couple has an advocate in the room allowing for the individual to feel safer and better held in what can be a very vulnerable and difficult process. The key element to effective couples work is the individual work of each partner. We will meet with a couple initially and get a sense of them together and what they are wanting to work on. Fox and I will then each begin working with one of the partners in the couple individually for a time before coming back into the room together. This allows for each individual to explore separately what is going on for them, what they are wanting and needing, and how to communicate that clearly with their partner.
Group therapy is a large part of my practice, first of all because I love working with groups, but mostly because it is amazingly effective! In tandem with individual work, group therapy can bring about remarkable change in the lives of its members.
Adult and Adolescent Groups
We live in groups, we work in groups, we find our greatest joys and deepest sorrows in our relationships, and we are often at our best, or our worst in the presence of others. Group therapy allows the opportunity to experience ourselves as we are in the world. We play out old patterns that don’t work, find support in trying to understand them, and practice different ways of relating and communicating that can transform our relationships with those in our lives, and with ourselves.
Parenting can become an all-consuming role in our lives. And while the role of Parent is arguably one of the most important we take on, it is not your only identity. Believe it or not, you will be more emotionally and physically available to meet your child’s needs if you stay connected to who you are as an individual, and successfully get your own needs met. It is a good thing to create time for yourself, to center and recharge. It’s the “oxygen mask theory” – if you aren’t taking good care of yourself, it’s hard to take care of anyone else.
While I may be the expert on therapy and child development, you are the expert on your child. I’m able to come in from an outside perspective and assess all the moving parts, then together we work to build on what works, and change what doesn’t.
I am a champion of parents! I applaud the courage it takes to ask for help when you need it. I love helping parents find their stride, trust their intuition, and feel confident in their parenting style.
Therapy for Children / Adolescents
At times children may have traumatic experiences that cannot be anticipated: abuse, bullying, the sudden loss of a loved one, . In those situations I’m well trained to work with you and your child to process the grief, and loss, build effective coping skills, and help move you toward a place of healing.
A child’s greatest need is to feel loved by his parents/caretakers, and to know that they genuinely accept his love for them. This strong relational foundation can facilitate a child’s ability to embrace his strengths, and brave his fears and struggles with hope. Children are resilient by nature, and with support from the adults in their life there is always room for change and growth.
A child's needs can be met in the following ways:
Children and families each have their own strengths and struggles. The concepts listed here can be applied in developmentally appropriate ways throughout your child’s life, from birth through young adulthood. I work with both you and your child in individual, family, and group settings to help your relationships grow, and offer the tools you need to communicate effectively and ensure that needs are met.
While I specialize in treating children who have experienced trauma and or traumatic loss, I also work very effectively with children who struggle with complex family dynamics, anxiety, mood regulation and other common mental health issues. I use multiple therapeutic models including; Trauma Focused-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Integrative Play Therapy, Sand Tray, Theraplay and Group Therapy.