Over the years, I have been profoundly affected and inspired by this
My path to becoming a therapist began decades ago when my deep fascination with the complexity of our emotional experiences led me to explore the world of Psychology. My awareness about how differently we each cope with similar stressors, losses, and life challenges, cultivated a sense of curiosity about how our temperament, culture, socio-economic background, gender, and family of origin affect our unique experience in the world. Coming from a multicultural and multilingual background myself, I was keenly aware of the rich complexity one navigates when forming an identity in a diverse environment.
This curiosity about the human psyche and experience led me to pursue a major in Developmental Psychology as an undergraduate at the University of California at Santa Cruz and to later pursue a Master of Science in Clinical Social Work at Columbia University School of Social Work. Upon receiving my LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker), I immediately immersed myself in the field of mental health, and since 1999, I have worked as a licensed psychotherapist in a myriad of settings including outpatient community mental health in NYC (Jewish Board of Family & Children's Services and CancerCare, Inc.), outpatient adult psychiatric services (Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute of UCSF & UC Berkeley Counseling and Psychological Services), and in private practice. For several years, I also provided post-graduate training to licensed psychotherapists who were seeking culturally competent training and supervision in Problem Solving Therapy with English and monolingual Spanish-speaking clients. In addition to my clinical work, I find visual arts and dance/movement/yoga to be healing mediums for myself personally and for clients who respond to creative expression as a form of catharsis and self-expression.
Over the years, I've been deeply inspired by this transformational work. Listening to people's unique narratives and life experiences has felt like a profound privilege and honor. What has impacted me most over the years is the awareness that even when people are in the midst of great suffering and emotional pain, I have simultaneously witnessed in them tremendous strength, resilience, triumph, creativity, wisdom, humor and moments of pure joy.
In my own personal journey to be fully present in my life, I am aware of how pervasive social conditioning bombarded me and those around me with such messages as, "if I improve this or change that," then I'll be a better partner, mother, father, friend, and then I'll have true peace and happiness. While change and transformation can be very positive at different points in our lives, this particular message of, "I should change because something about me is inherently wrong," can have harmful effects because it causes self-doubt and insecurity. Ultimately, this message becomes a distraction if our process of inquiry doesn't originate within the context of an acknowledged inner strength and wisdom.
My intention as your therapist is to foster a positive therapeutic environment where you can gently uproot and clear out all that distracts you from seeing, hearing, and feeling your nascent truth.