“As a practitioner committed to anti-oppression, I strive to de-pathologize mental health symptomatology such as anxiety, depression, and voice-hearing.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
My deep interest in humanity and in the ways that societal structures inform our imagination led me to become a therapist. I have long been fascinated by the connection between intersectional identities and internal narratives and how this impacts our sense of possibility. Through an exploration of the failures of my own imagination, I became interested in working with others to examine their own perceived limitations. As I developed as a clinician, I learned to listen for narratives of limitation and facilitate spaces of expansion and exploration. I’m drawn to the “in-between” and use a trauma-informed lens to foster a sense of safety from which we can explore both the concrete and ethereal.
What should someone know about working with you?
In our sessions, I cultivate a compassionate, non-judgmental, and supportive environment. I believe that the therapeutic relationship should provide a safe space for identity exploration, so you can more fully embody your truth in your day-to-day life. While a sense of progress is essential to the therapeutic journey, we will create a personalized understanding of what growth looks like for you, rather than settling for more prescriptive goals. From our first session, we will work to build a collaborative alliance that makes your unique goals, strengths, and experiences the touchstone of treatment. As a practitioner committed to anti-oppression, I strive to de-pathologize mental health symptomatology such as anxiety, depression, and voice-hearing while acknowledging that symptom relief may also be integral to mental health and your ability to find fulfillment in interpersonal connections.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
For many of us, the vulnerability required of therapy feels antithetical to survival mechanisms that help carry us through a world which is often hostile to softness and punishing of fantasy and fluidity. And yet, peeling away those painful layers can be a profoundly empowering experience. Choosing a therapist is an intentional process and I encourage those seeking a provider to ask questions, explore discomforts, and know that you are entitled to care that validates and affirms your existence.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I am most excited by the turn toward an interdisciplinary framework through which we understand what constitutes mental health treatment. Most notably, I am interested in practitioners who are de-centering medicalized treatment as the dominant model of mental health care and incorporating healing practices not typically sanctioned by Western biomedical models. I support and am enriched by the work of BIPOC and queer practitioners who write and think about the importance of sharing relevant aspects of one’s own identity as they support relational healing rather than relying on outdated conceptions of the therapist as a blank slate.
What is your growing edge and how do you work with that in your sessions?
I work hard to balance contradictory elements of the therapeutic process and strive to create a space where vulnerability and resistance can coexist in the service of deeper self-understanding. At times, this might include challenging unhelpful narratives and moving into territory that is unfamiliar, unprocessed, and potentially uncomfortable. I strive to create room for the contradictions that may exist in how we see ourselves and hope that our sessions can be a space for play and integration.
“You are entitled to care that validates and affirms your existence.”