My Approach to Helping
Hi. Thank you for visiting my profile.
I am a licensed and nationally recognized mental health therapist certified in trauma therapy. I specialize in working with angry, oppositional, depressed, anxious, suicidal or self-injurious youths. But I also offer assistance to the following:
- Parents needing skills
-Young adults with a trauma history
- Young adults trying to adjust to adulthood and find their identity
-Families with at-risk youths
-Youths being released from residential treatment facilities
- Youths with severe mental illness (i.e., bipolar disorder, psychotic symptoms)
In therapy I focus not only on validating your experiences (as appropriate), but also exploring challenges of living (i.e., transitions or changes, family difficulties, loss and grief, suicidal thoughts, questioning of faith or spiritual meaning, low self-esteem, culturally related challenges, healing from trauma or abuse, etc) and how they are affecting you. We all face these things, but how we cope with them is the most important part of therapy.
My main goal with all of my clients is to hear their individual stories and design a therapeutic approach based on the joint efforts of therapist and client. Each session focuses on building personal insight, spiritual awareness, and concrete tools for coping, adjusting, or changing.
More Info About My Practice
Although I am a child & adolescent therapist focusing on a specific population (i.e., parents, caregivers, families), I also work with young adults who are trying to adjust to college life or young adulthood. I work with parents and caregivers struggling with adult children with severe mental illness. My approach is to support and educate.
My View on the Purpose of Psychotherapy
The purpose of psychotherapy is to help clients unveil what is triggering their emotional responses to events in their lives, how their thoughts influence their actions and relationships, and how to cope with the residual effects of their behaviors, thoughts, and decisions. Therapy can also be helpful to clients interested in becoming knowledgeable about loved ones who may be suffering from mental health challenges or unhealthy behaviors. The therapist is not the "expert" per se, but an educated clinical guide who is being given the opportunity to serve clients and who must abide by state/federal laws and ethics codes in order for therapy to be successful.
Psychotherapy for children and adolescents should entail a degree of privacy and confidentiality to foster growth and trust between the client and therapist. My approach to therapy is that I will only report details to parents, caregivers, or other adults if the child or teen is in danger. Otherwise, youths need privacy in order to develop trust.
What I Say to People Concerned about the Therapy Process
Although therapy can be intimidating, therapy with me is a collaborative effort. The only way clients can grow, change, or find ways to cope with what is occurring in their life is to feel understood, cared for, and free to explore their feelings and thoughts.
My role as the therapist is to support, educate, and engage you (or the client) in self-exploration to promote independence, critical thinking skills, and insight. I also offer concrete tools, using a CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) approach when necessary. In other words, I teach you (or the client) how to process things occurring in life, how to adjust unhelpful thinking styles or modes of communicating, and how to apply therapeutic tools to real life. Therapy should be renewing, not pressuring.