“Protecting and embracing vulnerable children and supporting families in need of assistance is a passion of mine.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I began dreaming of becoming a psychotherapist when I was seventeen-years-old. Growing up, I was the only girl in a first-generation, immigrant, Asian-American family. This piqued my curiosity about the human experience and I became fascinated with social work. Protecting and embracing vulnerable children and supporting families in need of assistance is a passion of mine. I am always inspired by the strength and resilience humans possess in the face of adversity.
What should someone know about working with you?
I am here to help, especially during times of change, grief, loss, and trauma. I believe everyone deserves a second chance and that everyone is worthy of leading a life of self-discovery and meaning. Patients often describe me as nonjudgmental, understanding, caring, and compassionate. As your partner in healing, we work together to identify what you want out of therapy and develop a plan to help you reach these goals. I also put an emphasis on creating a more balanced life by helping you discover the most powerful aspects of self-care.
How does collaboration with other providers inform your work?
As a grief counselor who responds to emergencies, I have worked in a variety of situations involving COVID, death, suicide, downsizing, and quarantine. Serving on the front-lines requires a large degree of collaboration. Even in non-urgent situations, working with psychiatrists, physicians, outpatient treatment programs, and multidisciplinary teams are necessary for providing optimal care. Looking at a client through a holistic lens allows providers to better understand, evaluate, and support them.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
There is a stigma around therapy; it’s one we hear from others and one we perpetuate ourselves. But, in truth, no one’s life is perfect and everyone can benefit from getting help. Therapy provides a place to work through feelings of fear, shame, vulnerability, and resistance. I am here to provide a safe, accepting, caring space where all parts of you are welcome. Therapy is effective for any challenge, including depression, anxiety, PTSD, and other emotional challenges. It also works for lighter problems, including issues at work or roommate struggles.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
Our understanding of the impacts of trauma continues to evolve and this further inspires my work as an advocate. For five years, I’ve served on the board of directors at the New York Coalition for Asian-American Mental Health and the Chinese-American Sunshine House. Previously, I served two years on the nominations committee at the National Association for Social Workers. Advocacy work is vital in making sure all people have access to the rights and care they need.
“I am always inspired by the strength and resilience humans possess in the face of adversity.”
Interested in speaking with Mary?