Each one of us is an encyclopedia of stories, many of which are in sore need of some heavy editing.
Born and raised in Mexico, I immigrated to the US in 1986. I transferred to Brandeis University where I majored in Psychology. I then moved to Washington D.C. and went on to obtain a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Catholic University.
After working as a researcher for a few years, I shifted my attention to clinical practice, working in mental health clinics in Maryland, Virginia and D.C.
I started a private practice in 1995 in Bethesda, MD, where I worked for 15 years.
After spending a few years as a full time parent, I've now established a private practice in Falls Church, VA.
I enjoy writing and working in digital art and mixed media.
I find little use for the labels used to describe ourselves as therapists. The relationship between the client and the therapist is the main agent of therapeutic change. Empathy, compassion and feeling secure are necessary and are present across a wide range of therapeutic styles. Therapists don't come equipped with a bag full of answers or cures. We are facilitators and real persons who are honored to work in the sacred spaces and intimate processes of each one of our clients.
The therapist does have the responsibility to stay up to date in the fields that help our clients within and beyond psychology, such as psychopharmacology, neuropsychiatry as well as novel or emerging approaches to healing.
I believe competent therapists are eclectic by nature: it's our responsibility to be able to competently offer a wide range of therapeutic tools. As such, I use tools from cognitive-behavioral therapy, emotionally focused therapy, somatic therapy, sex therapy and hypnotherapy. Oriental philosophy guided practices, story-telling and narrative process are evident in my work. And sense of humor is a permanent resident.
The philosophies, schools of thought and theories that color both, my relationship with my clients, as well as the therapeutic process itself, include psychodynamic and modern schools of psychoanalysis, attachment theory, humanistic and existential schools. Figuring very prominently is the Self-Relations model as developed by Steven Gilligan.
I enjoy working alongside individuals navigating transitions in their lives and relationships.
Clients often come feeling stuck in their professional, family or intimate lives. My specialties include,
I help translate what our bodies often express as symptoms: whether this be depression, anxiety, self-defeating patterns, or other "short-hand labels" we've been taught.
I see people in individual therapy, couples therapy, small groups and offer supervision and consultations. For over 25 years, my research and clinical work has included an emphasis on bi-cultural Latino populations.