“My clinical training was focused on working with LGBTQ clients navigating kink, non-monogamy, gender, sexuality, and family dynamics as well as mental health concerns of depression, anxiety, coping skills, and behavioral issues.”
What was your path to becoming a Licensed Mental Health Counselor?
When I started my career, I worked in LGBTQ services, helping my community navigate their sexual health and wellbeing. Through my work, I was shocked by the lack of affirming, sex-positive mental health services. Folks often shared with me their difficulties in finding therapists who understood their relationships, validated their struggles, or even understood their identity or pronouns. Personally, I experienced similar barriers in navigating trans healthcare, particularly when accessing clearance letters for medical transition. Knowing the difficulties folks like me faced in mental health care, I decided to fill the gaps I saw. I pursued a dual master’s degree in counseling for mental health and wellness and LGBT health, education, and social services. My clinical training was focused on working with LGBTQ clients navigating kink, non-monogamy, gender, sexuality, and family dynamics as well as mental health concerns of depression, anxiety, coping skills, and behavioral issues. As a therapist, I strive to support clients with whatever they bring to the table from a lens that prioritizes humanity, connection, and individual autonomy.
What should someone know about working with you?
Clients should know that I believe therapy should be accessible to everyone; you won’t find me using ivory tower jargon or gatekeeping language in sessions. Instead, I use humor and genuine connection with my clients to achieve the therapeutic work. I have a friendly, casual demeanor in session while also staying focused and present with you. I believe a client’s connection to their therapist mirrors their connections to folks in their everyday lives, making the therapeutic relationship a safe space for sharing needs, exploring vulnerability, navigating conflict, and setting boundaries. Sessions with me prioritize the real-life application of the skills you want to see outside of session.
How do your own core values shape your approach to care?
One of my core values that guides my practice in therapy is a non-hierarchical, collaborative partnership; I believe my clients are the experts in their own experiences, bringing valuable insights, unique skills, perspectives, and opinions to therapy. While I am a person trained to help my clients utilize the tool of therapy, clients are the experts of their lives. I allow my clients to direct how they want to spend sessions and what they want to work on. I always trust my clients to know what is best for them and do not assume myself to be more capable of directing their lives than they are.
“As a therapist, I strive to support clients with whatever they bring to the table from a lens that prioritizes humanity, connection, and individual autonomy.”