About You:Therapy in SF for women, LGBTQQ

The issue that is making you think about therapy might be something you have been struggling with for a long time or maybe it is brand new. You have already put a lot of time into thinking about it and you may have talked with friends and/or family or even to a therapist, but it is still there. It doesn’t feel easy to call a therapist or to try therapy again, but you are at a place where you don’t want to feel so alone with this and you are willing to give therapy a try. 

It might feel overwhelming to think about how you are going to find the right person to talk to, but you probably have some ideas about what you are looking for: You want to work with someone who takes the time to get to know you, to understand how you see the world, and how you got to the place you are at right now. You would love a quick fix, but you know that it took you a long time to get here and it may take some time to get to where you would like to be. You want therapy to feel like a real experience with a real person, and it would never work for you to see a therapist who barely nods at you and mutters “uh huh” when you speak. A little humor wouldn’t be a bad thing, either!

About My Approach to Psychotherapy:

My approach to therapy  is warm, relational, and genuine.  I love including humor in my work, when appropriate, and I do my best to leave psychobabble at the door. Although listening forms the core of how I work, I do more than just listen: I am engaged and interactive, offering ideas and support for looking at your life in new ways. I can help you look beyond the obvious and find ways to change the things that can be changed, as well as help you find compassion and understanding for the things that may not be changeable.

I have a great deal of respect for the importance of looking beyond the problem that brought you to therapy and at the bigger picture — your history, culture, family, where you grew up, and the many other influences that have shaped your conscious and unconscious motivations for who you are and how you view the world. You didn’t just end up here by accident: there are reasons why you are who you are and why you do what you do, and part of our job is to try to learn what those reasons are so that we can unravel what is not working.

About My Psychotherapy Influences:

I am influenced by a number of theoretical approaches, including attachment, relational, psychodynamic, and psychoanalytic, as well as by Buddhist mindfulness and current research in neuropsychology.  I am interested in what is going on for you now, but I know that who you are and what is going on for you is strongly impacted by many factors. My approach is always tailored to what makes sense for you and for the issues you want to work on. Therapy is not “one size fits all.” Most importantly — and the research supports this — the connection between us is the most critical component of our work together.

My work is guided by my belief that we are influenced not only by our families and by our life experience, but also by the fact that we live in a complex, rapidly changing world and are members of a larger political and social culture. This is especially true in our current political climate.

About My Experience:

In addition to my private practice, I have supervised interns and served on the Education Committee at The Boulder Institute for Psychotherapy and Research in Boulder, Colorado. I chaired the intern support committee for the San Francisco Chapter of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (SFCAMFT).  I have been a group supervisor at The Pacific Center and at The Women’s Therapy Center , both located in Berkeley, and an individual supervisor for Community Institute for Psychotherapy in San Rafael and for Queer Lifespace in SF.

I have conducted trainings on the topic of working with gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning people at Pacific Center, Notre Dame de Nemur University in Belmont, California, and at Haight Ashbury Psychological Services in San Francisco. I am a member of numerous professional organizations including The San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis, The Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California, The Self and Relational Psychoanalysis Colloquium, The International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis, The South Bay Community for Psychoanalytic Study (Organizing Committee Member and Member of Study Series Committee), California Association for Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT), as well as the San Francisco Chapter of CAMFT.

About My Background:

I am licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist in both the State of California (MFC 45402) and the State of Colorado (MFT-836). My professional training and experience includes completion of the three-year post-graduate training program in psychodynamic psychotherapy at The Psychotherapy Institute in Berkeley, California, working with elementary school children as a school therapist, serving as a therapist in a community counseling center, and working in private practice.

I regularly attend seminars, lectures, and workshops related to the field of psychotherapy and psychoanalysis, and participate in both short and long-term study and reading groups. For the past three years, I have been an active member of the Extended Study Series year-long class sponsored by The South Bay Community for Psychoanalytic Study and The Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California.

Prior to becoming a psychotherapist, I spent many years working for both large and small companies, and I have been the owner of a small computer consulting business. I have a deep appreciation for the challenges that each of these different professional environments can present, as well as for the difficulty of balancing work with family and personal responsibilities. This practical, real-world experience is at the core of my work as a psychotherapist.