Relationships and life can be challenging. Sometimes it feels easier to walk away or shut down. Courage entails choosing connection and curiosity instead. To love is to be vulnerable. I am experienced working with couples who need help rebuilding trust, managing anger and decreasing conflict, recovering from infidelity, and improving communication skills. I also work with individuals with substance abuse disorders, negative self talk/shame, marginalization and LGBTQ issues, as well as adjustment to chronic illness/disability. All parts of you are welcome here.
I am an active listener who calmly uses curiosity and thoughtfulness to explore your emotional patterns. We will work together to identify problematic issues, and work collaboratively towards resolving them in a safe, nonjudgmental atmosphere. In couples therapy I will watch, stop you, listen and help you to access emotions to help you reconnect with your partner. I have extensive training in EFT-C (Emotion Focused Couple Therapy), in addition to Internal Family Systems Therapy. I also draw from Psychodynamic Theory, incorporating mindfulness and DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) into my practice.
Our sessions will be warm and healing. My office is inviting and comfortable. Wrap yourself in a woolen throw, put your feet up if you wish. You will leave feeling heard.
I grew up in Canada, but have called Portland home for the past 16 years. I have a previous career as a social worker, and am passionate about my children, animals, travel, music, and spending time with friends, usually finding new restaurants. I feel so fortunate to do this career that I love.
I have a Master’s Degree in Counseling from Portland State University. I am a Licensed Professional Counselor, and still regularly consult with Dr. Rick Johnson. I am a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, and also a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC 1). I have additional training in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy. I also have a Bachelor’s Degree from Simon Fraser University (Canada) in Criminology. I currently teach at Portland State University in their Addictions Certificate program. As a Licensed Professional Counselor, I am also required to participate in ongoing trainings in ethics and multicultural issues.
WHAT IS A REHABILITATION COUNSELOR?
I am a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC). This means that I have specialized training in helping individuals with cognitive, emotional, physical, mental and developmental disabilities achieve vocational, mental health and personal goals. I can assist individuals adjust to internal and external barriers to evolve, regardless of ability level. My focus in this area is on the mental health aspect of adjusting to the medical/psychosocial aspects of a disability/chronic illness, for both individuals and couples. I am also experienced in assisting family members in adjusting to chronic/terminal illness of loved ones.