Theoretical Orientation

hull-yellowPsychoanalytic Theory, Object Relations

My theoretical approach to therapy is a collaborative style of Psychoanalytic Theory in which you and I can work together to understand difficult feelings and challenging relationships. Sessions are a space for you to get help with emotions that are hard to name and even harder to express. You may want to explore how you feel about yourself, your family relationships, friendships and romances. Therapy is also a place to find support around big thematic topics such as pain, mothering, sexuality, substances, food, activities, career and transitions. 

The Object Relations school of Psychoanalytic Theory places emphasis on the therapist and client together coming to an understanding the genesis of a person’s distress by examining early relationships that have influenced virtually all subsequent intimate relationships and ways of seeing the world.  I believe it is important that as a therapists I show up and honor the development of an authentic relationship with each of my clients. In session, I actively listen to what you are saying, as well as pay attention to what is communicated through actions, affect, dreams and wishes. I also attend in an open, exploratory way to your experience of coming into the office and working with me.

A therapeutic relationship is an opportunity to intentionally explore patterns of relating so we can gain a new way forward where before there was only distress and confusion.

The Feminist Perspective

My work is grounded in the feminist perspective that each client is the expert of their own experience. An example of Object Relations and a Feminist perspective working together would be, if you ask for my opinion, I make every effort to take the time to help you explore your thoughts and feelings both around the asking and your own perspective on the issue at hand, instead of telling you what I would choose or do. In my work as a therapist, I accept that people are profoundly impacted by discrimination, oppression, systemic racism, socialization,  and harmful cultural biases. I make a commitment to my clients to continually do my own learning about my internal biases and examine my privilege.

The Influence of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

My treatment approach is also influenced by a counseling theory called ACT, which is an acronym for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. I attempt to balance the ACT tenants of mindfulness and contact with the present moment, with my psychoanalytically informed perspective on personality and mental health, with the goal of helping you live a life directed by your chosen values. Some of my chosen values that guide me in my life and work include working for equality, standing up for inclusion, continuing to be a learner, and exploring the unknown “shadow” aspects of being a human in order to relate authentically with others.

Professional Association Memberships: