“I encourage everyone to be imaginative through things like drawing, movement, words, and voice.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I have been intensely interested in people’s life stories and all forms of art from an early age. Since I wanted to study psychology, I got support from my father to come to the US in 1983. I entered the Boston University Psychology Department, as I was encouraged by their clinical approach of unconditional positive regard. I then got a chance to study at The Art Institute of Lesley College with Dr. Paolo J. Knill, who is the founder of intermodal expressive therapies. I have also had the support of my grandmother, a traditional, Shinto healer. Her belief and trust in my ability to be creative and a good listener helped me greatly. In my middle school for the blind in Tokyo, my English teacher was a blind person, which helped as well. Learning gestalt therapy has led me to understand how to carry on as a private practitioner of psychotherapy. I am an immigrant myself and I enjoy working with everybody, especially Pan Asian people as I understand cultural ways of thinking and attitudes in the family.
What should someone know about working with you?
My intake is very informal and designed to get to know the person where they are. I encourage everyone to be imaginative through things like drawing, movement, words, and voice. I believe in finding oneself bit by bit through the development of body awareness and artwork.
How do your core values shape your approach to therapy?
I have a sense of wonder about the world and the people in it! I believe in the Shinto idea of the world and believe that everything has a soul and everything is living in its own way. I start therapy by respecting a person as they are. As I am a blind woman of color, I am often treated two distinct ways. One of these ways involves unusual kindness from strangers! But the other involves me not being believed or heard to the point that I’m gaslighted. I have been lucky to have a lot of good fortune. Now, I am proud of myself as I start to solidify my psychotherapy private practice in Manhattan among many white male and female counterparts!
“I believe in finding oneself bit by bit through the development of body awareness and artwork.”