I am an LMFT and received my 2nd Masters's Degree from San Diego State University; my 1st Master's Degree from Azusa Pacific University; and my Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from California State University San Marcos. In addition, I received a Master's degree from Azusa Pacific University in Physical Education. I enjoy academics and value the knowledge and opportunities for growth that education and research provide. I am passionate about my work in the field of therapy and I feel fortunate and blessed to be able to work with individuals that I meet. I have worked in the field of severe mental health disorders, and adolescents dealing with a wide variety of trauma, domestic violence, sex trafficking, addiction, and parenting practices. No matter what the experience is, I work from a trauma-informed care approach which provides an environment of understanding, compassion, and a non-judgmental experience. I often practice Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Solution Focused Therapy, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy, depending on the modality of therapy that is needed for the client. I am also passionate about Attachment Theory and the benefits it provides to children and how those benefits manifest themselves into our future and the quality of our relationships with others. Personally, my proudest accomplishment is being a mother to my four children. I have been able to use my career and love for them to raise them into great people that I am extremely proud. I am also married and enjoy that my husband and I share many common interests and activities together. I love sports and having time to relax with my family and embrace all that life has given me and that I have worked for.
I approach all clients from a client-centered therapy approach. In addition, I would consider myself an Attachment Theorist at heart and believe that it is interwoven into most of my sessions. In addition, I am trained and certified in practicing Motivational interviewing and Dialectical Behavior Therapy. Other modalities that I practice include Trauma Informed Care; Solution Focused Therapy; and Family Systems Theory.
I believe that the clients that I get are "meant to be with me". Because of my experience in therapy and in life, I believe that the connection with my clients promotes their overall sense of wellness and growth and also provides a therapeutic connection that best serves the mental, emotional, and physical wellness of the client.
My communication style
My communication in therapy supports the concept that is outlined in CBT practices. I provide empathic, active, and reflective listening in order for the client to feel heard, and supported and also model healthy communication that is conducive not only to therapy but to all areas of life.
My journey to mental healthcare
I have always wanted to be a teacher or therapist. At one point in my life, I was doing both and I realized that I had to choose one, for my own wellness. I chose to stay in the field of therapy and while I am passionate and dedicated to it, I think fondly about my days of teaching and believe that the time with students only makes me a better therapist from my experience in the classroom. As a therapist, I know that my life experience allows me to sit with clients in a way that most other therapists may not be able to do. I do not believe that I sit in a directive place in therapy. I enjoy collaborating with clients and hearing their stories, and I am dedicated to supporting them and understanding them, as we live in a world that often does not provide that. At the heart of the matter, I identify as an activist for people that may not be able to have a voice for themselves or have not found that voice yet. That concept is fulfilling for me, and it provides me with motivation and eagerness to continue therapy every day and provide the best type of therapeutic support that is possible for my clients.
My goals for you
I never believe it is my job to set clients' goals. As we collaborate in therapy, it is my job to hear what the client's goals are, support the client in reaching their goals, and also provide a voice to other possible goals that could support their overall wellness and life satisfaction.
My first session with you
I would tell all clients, a first session should not be indicative of the therapy style that can be seen later in sessions. I always make sure that I follow what is outlined by the state of California in regard to law and ethics. I make sure that in our first session, you are aware of treatment practices, payment, consent, confidentiality, and also being very clear about diagnosis, and listening to what your needs are.