“People need to feel heard and safe and deserve a space where their full experience is explored and understood.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I've always been interested in humans and their behavior but, more importantly, focused on understanding their thoughts and feelings. I realized I wanted to go into counseling due to the gap in the number of bilingual and culturally aware therapists available. Mental health is still stigmatized in the Latino/x/e community and there weren’t many therapists addressing this at the time. In order to continue breaking stigmas in the community and improving access to care, more diversity among clinicians is necessary.
I've worked and volunteered in different settings but most recently worked in a community mental health clinic in Brooklyn. Here, clients ranged in ages from 3-80 and lived with a variety of mental health diagnoses and psychiatric severity. My work solidified the importance of a good fit. People need to feel heard and safe and deserve a space where their full experience is explored and understood.
What should someone know about working with you?
I take a person-centered approach, which means I meet you where you are. However, I do nudge along the way while making sure that you are comfortable with the pace. I also conceptualize a person from a trauma-informed lens and keep in mind all aspects and systems that have impacted the individual. I bring in some aspects of CBT and DBT, depending on the client’s awareness of their thoughts and feelings. Each client creates their own goals and I provide the support and space to break down those goals into steps and hold YOU accountable. Progress looks different for everyone and I praise both small and big steps. Sometimes, progress manifests as being able to speak on, explore, and unpack emotions, memories, and situations that were ignored and uncomfortable before. I enjoy working with adults who are motivated to seek insight and create change.
What do you do to continue learning and building competencies as a provider?
As clinicians, our work continues outside the office. I'm a firm believer that we need to continue being interested in learning about the world around us, new theories, and techniques as much as we are interested in learning about the client and their world. I continue reading and take trainings in trauma work, depression, and anxiety.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I'm excited to see the mental health landscape continue to evolve and expand, even if talking about mental health can still feel difficult. I hope to see a world where everyone takes their mental health seriously and is willing and able to seek support when needed (and not just during difficult times). Mental health is as important as our physical health.
“Each client creates their own goals and I provide the support and space to break down those goals into steps and hold YOU accountable.”