“From our first session, I help you re-establish a sense of normalcy, feel safe, feel understood, and feel free from judgment.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I am a second-generation physician; my career choice toward medicine was due to my mother, a passionate and dedicated psychiatrist. I graduated from the Moscow Medical University (in Russia) and completed a psychiatry residency program in Israel. During my doctor’s rounds in the psychiatric wards, my clients told me their life stories. I asked myself why responses to the same medications and an individual’s healing process were so different. I tried to find the answers. I completed a training in psychodynamic and cognitive behavioral psychotherapy. After my relocation to the US, I obtained a MS in clinical mental health counseling. Today, I do not prescribe medications. I work under the umbrella of a psychotherapist and believe in the human capacity to grow and heal through interpersonal contact and insight.
What should someone know about working with you?
The first step of asking for help can be tough; you may come in troubled and hopeless. From our first session, I help you re-establish a sense of normalcy, feel safe, feel understood, and feel free from judgment. After getting more information about your concerns and life, I assist you to identify therapy goals. I encourage you to be curious and actively participate in the therapy process. It is not possible to change the past, but you can learn how to recognize and disconnect the negative emotional charge that affects and restricts your current life. Changes happen when you take a risk to explore painful feelings, thoughts, and maladaptive life patterns. Therapy helps you get relief from emotional pain, build meaningful connections with yourself and others, feel safe, feel confident, and feel self-accepted.
What do you do to continue learning and building competencies as a provider?
Being a competent therapist is an ongoing process that involves work, study, and commitment. Continuing education is essential to professional development. My advanced courses and webinars in the field of complex trauma helped me expand my clinical knowledge, get new perspectives, and learn more about innovative treatment approaches.
How do your own core values shape your approach to therapy?
I strongly believe that the individual capacity for stress adaptation depends on the person’s unique set of life experiences and can be understood within the context of the whole person. I lived and worked as a mental health professional in different countries. My family and I went through the many difficulties and challenges of immigration. From my life journey, I learned to better recognize my personal strengths and weaknesses, not give up when facing prejudice and discrimination, and to value a therapist's empathy, acceptance, and cultural sensitivity. I agree with the founder of logotherapy, Viktor Frankl: “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
“Changes happen when you take a risk to explore painful feelings, thoughts, and maladaptive life patterns.”