In 2010, I began working in a therapeutic group home for foster children with severe behavioral challenges. Working with this population helped me learn how to work with individuals who have experienced severe trauma with empathy and transparency. I've learned the importance of humor, human resilience, and openness. Several years ago, I helped create a DBT program that supports children and adults, which I now oversee.
In addition to working with teens with behavioral challenges, I spent several years working at a non-profit organization providing counseling to individuals, couples, families, and groups. During this time, I worked primarily with adults who wanted to improve their self-esteem, decrease anxiety and depressive symptoms, improve parenting skills, decrease symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, change disordered eating behaviors, establish new relational patterns, and acquire tools to improve overall emotional well-being.
Outside of actual counseling, I co-taught a Group Counseling course at Antioch University for one year. I also designed and regularly teach a two-day DBT course as well as a course in individuals with dual diagnosis to state employees in a variety of settings.
My educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Seattle Pacific University and a Master's Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Antioch University. In addition, I have obtained certification in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy through the Linehan Institute course as well as two years of personal training and supervision from a Certified DBT Trainer.
My personal experiences also greatly inform the work I do with my clients. Of particular importance is my experience in the United States Marine Corps that included a deployment to Iraq. These experiences led me to want to work with Veterans as I quickly learned how difficult it can be to talk to civilians about military experiences. I offer clients a space free from judgement where they can speak openly about their experiences to someone who can honor their experiences and empathize in a way only another Veteran can.
Counseling is a conversation. You are the expert of your own experience and will guide our work using the goals you bring to each session. My job is to offer support and empathy as we work to help you gain awareness of your own inner world. I am heavily grounded in the therapeutic aspects of Jungian and Buddhist Theories and use tools from other theories including Dialectic Behavior Therapy.
You can expect a safe, supportive environment where you will be encouraged to explore your life experiences and the thoughts and feelings connected to them. One of my greatest elements is strength and my clients report feeling safe and supported during our work together. I balance this with humor and kindness to create an environment where you can work through difficult experiences.
Some people worry about being judged by their counselor and I can promise you that our time together will be free from judgement or criticism. Counseling is a place of compassion, humor, and acceptance. Through authentic, supportive relationships, we find healing and self-acceptance.