Relational psychotherapy for women; for therapists; and for the LGBTQQ++ communities. Serving CA, CO, IL, and FL.
Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Based in San Mateo, CA
Psychotherapy is a journey of exploration. Most of the people I work with are ordinary people with ordinary life problems that have become too uncomfortable to deal with alone: relationship issues, career challenges, relocation, stress, anxiety, the world we live in, and more. Therapy gives people an opportunity to take a deeper look at the issues in their lives that are causing discomfort and to find new ways to respond.
By "psychoanalytic therapy," I mean that my work is influenced by Contemporary Relational Psychoanalysis. Unfortunately, psychoanalysis has picked up somewhat of a negative reputation along the way! While I agree that many psychoanalytic concepts feel dated and don't speak to many of us, there are also many valuable ideas that are very helpful. For example, psychoanalysis has great respect for the idea that our past has an impact on our present and on our future, even though we may not remember the exact details. It also gives us tools for thinking about how our minds take in information and how we make use of it.
Don't let this word scare you! Psychoanalysis has grown up and can be incredibly helpful. This approach begins with great respect for the influence our past has on our present and on our future. It gives us tools for thinking about how our minds take in information and how we make use of it. Perhaps most importantly, psychoanalysis has great respect for our unconscious minds and seeks to help us understand what might be going on "underneath the surface."
I work extensively with lesbian and bisexual women, and often with gay men. For many years, I provided individual and group supervision for pre-licensed clinicians at two LGBTQQ++ counseling centers: Pacific Center in Berkeley and at Queer Life Space in San Francisco. I have a deep understanding of the challenges that can come with seeing the world through an LGBTQQ++ lens.
By Humanistic, I mean that in our work together, we will consider all parts of you and help you to realize your full potential in life. I believe that we are each greater than the sum of our parts and that we are better people and more engaged in our lives and our communities when we have greater understanding of ourselves and others.
Many early therapists operated from the belief that the therapist was the all-knowing person in the room and that therapy worked best when the therapist maintained distance. Most therapists today no longer hold this belief system. Instead, we view the work of therapy as a collaboration between two people who each bring something important and unique to the table. It is that collaboration that creates the possibility for change.
Being a woman means that you face a unique set of challenges. Although opportunities for women in the workforce are greater than ever before, women's lives are still fraught with challenges when it comes to being respected for our work and being afforded the same opportunities for advancement as men. In addition, women typically assume primary responsibility for children and elderly parents. A focus of my work is on helping women navigate this treacherous and often confusing landscape.
Moving through life means constantly navigating relationships with significant others, family, workplace, etc. We each have our own unique relationships with the world and with our environment. While we hope that our relationships are a source of joy in our lives, they can also cause tremendous pain when we are faced with disagreements, ruptures, and disconnection. Therapy can help you find new understandings and new ways to work with the inevitable problems that can arise.
Research has repeatedly shown that the most important factor in successful therapy outcomes is the relationship between you and your therapist. This is why my approach includes working with you to create a warm and supportive environment in which to explore whatever is bringing you to therapy at a pace that feels right to you. A solid therapeutic relationship opens the doors to exploring aspects of your life that may have previously seemed inaccessible.