“I believe in an engaged, empathic, and nonjudgmental approach; communication and collaboration are key.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I’ve had a longstanding interest in neuroscience and, in medical school, my focus shifted to the social and psychological. I realized there was great significance in taking an integrated approach to each patient. Life challenges and illness, whether medical or psychiatric, often go together and don’t exist in isolation. They also are uniquely experienced by each individual, family, and community. This formed the basis for my interest in psychotherapy and I enrolled in courses at the New York Psychoanalytic Society and Institute (NYPSI). The mind and brain, together, help us navigate insight, make decisions, experience satisfaction, and create meaning. Psychiatry offered me a path to meld these interests with a passion for care and a deeper understanding of the human experience.
What should someone know about working with you?
I believe in an engaged, empathic, and nonjudgmental approach; communication and collaboration are key. This begins with our initial consultation to determine your needs and concerns. During this meeting, we will establish your goals for therapy and figure out how it feels to work together. Personal progress is often a challenge and misunderstandings can happen along the way, so I always encourage questions and open communication. I generally recommend therapy to develop an understanding of yourself and your worries. Medication management can occur if needed and works best when you’re seen as a whole person rather than a set of symptoms. Your physical wellness — including nutrition, sleep, and exercise — are as important as issues regarding race, gender, culture, and identity. Through this lens, I hope to create a safe space for your healing.
How does collaboration with other providers inform your work?
A holistic approach is beneficial to your care. At times, I may touch base with providers who are presently caring for or have cared for you. Of course, a discussion with you will occur first and any identifiable information is private. Collaboration can be useful in understanding your overall health and optimizing your care, especially in the context of medication management. At other times, collaboration may take place in colleague supervision settings to provide different perspectives. There are benefits to having an integrated team; at the same time, confidentiality is of the utmost importance.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
Curiosity goes a long way! Talk about it with those you trust and who have done therapy themselves. All of us have different fears, judgments, and expectations, and that’s okay. However, hesitation can limit our ability to explore options, understand ourselves, and relate to others. Some common fears are simply rooted in misunderstandings; as often said, we don’t know what we don’t know. I hope to help you discover an experience that is both supportive and exploratory. Therapy allows you to see yourself more honestly so that you can gain new insight, feel freer in your decisions, and ultimately feel better.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
There’s more open-mindedness and engagement around conversations about mental health today. New treatments are being discovered. It’s inspiring to see varied cultural, background, and identity concerns brought to light. As a psychiatrist, I like to think of different possibilities in helping each individual. Research findings are usually more concrete, systematic, and occurring on larger scales, yet it’s helpful to remember that each person has a unique past with experiences and relationships that can’t be encapsulated in a study; here, a more abstract understanding is key. It’s truly encouraging to see that different approaches can be used depending on the individual.
“Therapy allows you to see yourself more honestly so that you can gain new insight, feel freer in your decisions, and ultimately feel better.”