I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a Masters in Social Work from Portland State University (Oregon License number L4631). I have over 15 years experience working with individuals and couples (LGBTQIA+ and straight) in agency, medical, and private practice settings. I am body positive and sex positive.
My approach uses components of Family Systems, noting the power that our early relationships and generational patterns have in shaping our perspectives, and Interpersonal Neurobiology, looking to address the way that our brains function in relationships and how we can use that understanding to shape new perspectives. I look to mindfulness as a tool to help people increase mind and body awareness and to explore the nuances of how a person experiences relationships and stress. Compassion and curiosity guide my work with people and I like to allow humor to bubble up wherever it can because, you know, laughter.
When I work with couples, I rely a lot on Family Systems thinking, but I also refer to aspects of the training I received in the Gottman Method. The Gottman perspective emphasizes research based information about how to best support couples' connection and communication.
I often use EMDR in my work to help people heal from distressing and traumatic experiences and to increase their access to internal resources. My framework for helping people recover from trauma is also informed by the body centered theories of Somatic Psychotherapy, Somatic Sensing and Polyvagal Theory.
In the course of my career, I have worked with people that identify within the LGBTQIA+ community, People of Color, people who have immigrated to the U.S., and people who identify as working class. I have also worked with people of deep religious faith. People within these groups can share a sense of wariness regarding therapy and the therapist's ability to acknowledge important cultural and identity factors. I have an awareness and compassion for that wariness. I also continually educate myself about experiences within these communities, how my biases may arise, and how to uncover and work on repairing my own mistakes. As I work to hold an awareness of cultural factors, my goal is to listen carefully to each individual and attune to what is most relevant to their experience.