“One of my best attributes as a therapist is building trusting relationships with children and adolescents as I believe strongly in the values of authenticity and transparency.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I have been working in the field of social work for almost ten years and have a focus on working with children and adolescents in schools. I have worked with all age groups from early childhood (three-years-old) to transfer high school students (up to 21-years-old). One of my best attributes as a therapist is building trusting relationships with children and adolescents as I believe strongly in the values of authenticity and transparency.
What should someone know about working with you?
Since I work mostly with children and adolescents, I complete a short intake with parents and then meet with the child separately to determine the best fit. For young children, I use play therapy and creative arts therapies; for older adolescents, I use more talk therapy and possibly homework, based on their needs and concerns. I tend to use solution-focused therapy with families to support their concerns around their child’s behavior.
What do you do to continue learning and building competencies as a provider?
I recently finished NYU’s certificate program in child and family therapy to learn more about various types of therapy rather than focusing solely on one intervention. I like to use a mix of various strategies to support my clients and I don’t believe one size fits all; my sessions are collaborative and I want to focus on where the client is and what they want to accomplish.
How do your own core values shape your approach to therapy?
Personally, I value honesty and authenticity. When a person seeks me out for therapy, I don’t want to come across as any other therapist. I want to be someone who they know won’t judge them and can offer skills that are useful to them. Working with adolescents is a passion of mine and I feel very capable of navigating difficult relationships as they arise during the “storm and stress” period of puberty.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I love the shift toward executive functioning coaching. So many of the students I work with in my job as a school social worker lack the ability to work collaboratively. Social skills are also severely undervalued and I am excited to work with teens with mild autism and help them to better understand their own emotions and build empathy. We talk so much about bullying and promoting kindness but we don’t talk enough about self-confidence and social cues.
“I like to use a mix of various strategies to support my clients and I don’t believe one size fits all; my sessions are collaborative and I want to focus on where the client is and what they want to accomplish.”