Welcome to my private practice! I maintain two offices in Los Alamitos, California. The first, at 5182 Katella Avenue, Suite 206 is a welcoming, peaceful retreat where you can relax and spend some time focusing on yourself. This office is where the bulk of my appointments are held. My second office, at 5212 Katella Avenue, Suite 104 is in the same parking lot and group of buildings, but on the first floor so it is wheelchair accessible and is only used for appointments with those clients that are not able to manage a flight of stairs.
I specialize in teaching children, teens, and adults new ways to cope with symptoms of anxiety, depression, grief, and more. I feel strongly that we have within ourselves the ability to heal and that with some guidance, we can find creative solutions to our own problems and use these problems as motivation to improve. I believe that clients do not want to spend years and years in therapy, so I focus on realistic, goal oriented approaches to improve functioning in the short term while working on long standing issues. I utilize Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy in helping clients achieve their goals.
I received my bachelor's degree in Cognitive Science from the University of California, Irvine in 1994. I then transferred from California State University, Northridge to California Graduate Institute to complete my Master's Degree in Psychology in 1997. I completed my Doctor of Psychology degree in 2000 also at California Graduate Institute.
As a student of psychology and as an intern, I worked at Beverlywood Residental Facility in Los Angeles, the Rader Institute in Culver City, Family Service of Long Beach, Flossie Lewis Center in Long Beach, and schools in both the Long Beach Unified School District and the Downey Unified School District. Additionally, I co-facilitated a parenting group at Family Services for two years.
These thoughts from author and journalist Anna Quindlen beautifully summarize my guiding principle for myself and my intention when working with my clients:
“...nothing important, or meaningful, or beautiful, or interesting, or great ever came out of imitations. The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect [in the way people expect] and beginning the work of becoming yourself.
"This is more difficult, because there is no zeitgeist to read, no template to follow, no mask to wear. Set aside what your friends expect, what your parents demand, what your acquaintances require. Set aside the messages this culture sends, through its advertising, its entertainment, its disdain and its disapproval, about how you should behave.
"Set aside the old traditional notion of female as nurturer and male as leader; set aside, too, the new traditional notions of female as superwoman and male as oppressor. Begin with that most terrifying of all things, a clean slate. Then look, every day, at the choices you are making, and when you ask yourself why you are making them, find this answer: for me, for me. Because they are who and what I am, and mean to be.
Source: 1999 Mount Holyoke Commencement Speech