Who I Help
I help children, teens, and adults who want to heal from abuse-related trauma, such as trauma from sexual abuse/assault and domestic violence.
I also help people heal from having been bullied, judged, or rejected in other ways.
My clients wish to be able to stick up for themselves, stop being people pleasers, improve their self-esteem, let go of shame, increase self-compassion and self-care, and have healthy relationships. They also wish to find their voice so that they can feel heard.
I also help people who have tried traditional talk-based therapy and are seeking a more experiential, creative therapy approach. Such people may see only me or may see me in conjunction to a talk-based therapist.
How I Facilitate Transformation
I guide my clients through a shift from surviving to thriving by validating their experiences, which I do by letting them know that their responses to trauma, abuse, and rejection are appropriate responses to those situations.
I also provide them with information about coping skills, healthy communication, healthy relationships, and other topics that everyone can benefit from learning about.
I also help them identify and nurture their strengths while helping them improve self-compassion, self-care, and self-esteem.
I provide a safe, non-judgmental place to be true to themselves and opportunities to explore their issues experientially and creatively, which often feels less intense than directly talking about problems.
In these ways and more, I help my clients feel empowered.
I guide them in these ways so that they can move forward in life and stop feeling stuck in the past, have healthy relationships, and feel safe, secure, happy, loved, validated, and empowered.
Why I Do This Work
I know from my own path to wellness that it is possible to overcome being bullied as a child, putting others’ needs above my own, having intense shame and low self-esteem, and not feeling heard.
I know from my work as a therapist that my clients have overcome trauma symptoms (such as flashbacks, anxiety, depression, and difficulties trusting people), the inability to give themselves love and care that they give to loved ones, the inability to have healthy relationships with themselves and others, and not feeling heard.
What I Believe
Compassion is the most important thing we can give to ourselves and to others.
No one deserves to be abused.
Everyone has the right to set boundaries in an assertive manner.
Everyone has strengths.
No one should feel alone in their suffering.
Everyone can benefit from talking to a therapist for support.
How I Practice What I Preach
I make sure to practice self-care, too! Some of my favorite ways to do so are eating healthy, exercising regularly, listening to music, spending time in nature, being creative (fun fact: most pictures on my website were taken by me), doing activities that help me focus on the present (such as meditation and keeping a gratitude journal), having regular contact with my most supportive loved ones, and saying no when I need to put myself first while balancing that with being an advocate and activist for human and animal rights.
My Core Values
- Compassion, for self and others. I believe in the golden rule of doing unto others as I would like done unto me, which means that I believe we should all be kind to each other. I believe in being as culturally sensitive as possible, and I welcome clients with diverse backgrounds in regards to gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, and spirituality.
- Honesty. I believe that I am not doing clients any favors if I lie to them or help them be avoidant, but at the same time I believe in being tactful and gentle with my honesty. I also believe in being authentic, meaning that clients and I are free to be true to ourselves without being judged for it.
- Positivity. I believe that while it’s important not to minimize life’s struggles, it is also important to focus on our positive experiences. Some ways that I do this are by helping clients focus on gratitude, mindfulness, and the present moment while also helping clients focus on their strengths.
- Being non-judgmental. I believe in honoring that everyone has their own pace on their path to healing, which is why I help clients celebrate even small steps towards their healing. I understand that change, even the good kind, is difficult and takes courage and patience. And I understand that we all make mistakes and may not make linear progress.
- Creativity. I believe that using creative approaches in therapy helps clients in a way that just talking in therapy does not. To learn more about this, please read my FAQ about drama therapy, my page about drama therapy, and my first few blog posts about it.
- A holistic approach that works with the mind and the body. I believe that dramatic and other creative techniques in therapy incorporate the body in a way that traditional talk therapy does not do, which is important because studies show that the mind and body are very connected. For example, some people who have experienced trauma to their bodies can only access and process such trauma in a physical/non-verbal way since they experienced it in such a manner, so experiential approaches help them explore their trauma in a way that talking does not provide.
- Efficiency. I believe that clients ideally shouldn’t feel the need to attend therapy for years at a time and should learn practical tools to apply outside of therapy early into the work. I believe in doing hands on activities that help clients process information faster, and I believe in sharing information with them via hand outs and other resources. This is more cost effective and time effective.
My Professional Background
- B.A. in drama therapy from New York University in 2003
- M.A. in drama therapy from New York University in 2006
- RDT (Registered Drama Therapist) credentials, #374, from the NADTA in 2007
- EMDR training through an EMDRIA approved trainer in December 2017 (level I) and February 2018 (level II)
My Professional Affiliations
- Member of the NADTA (North American Drama Therapy Association) since 2003, and member of the government affairs committee since 2010.
If you are ready for your transformation, please contact me for your free 15 minute phone consultation.