Frequently asked questions about therapy with me
Do you have expertise with my problem?
I have expertise with persistent depression (which can look a lot of ways including: lack of motivation or sense of purpose, surprising and overwhelming bouts of crying, self-doubt, self-criticism or self-analysis) and social or generalized anxiety (which can look like: hyper-performing, panic, fears, feeling disconnected from your body, chronic pain or illness.) More info here…
What is attachment therapy?
Attachment Therapy is a method of working with clients that focuses on your learned and often hidden beliefs about relationships and the world. Connection and Safety are prerequisites that support us to move out into the world to create, take risks, explore and accomplish our goals. Find more information here…
Group Therapy sounds awful!! Why even consider it?
Group therapy does require some willingness to expose yourself. Group can be uncomfortable, even unpleasant at times. But what we group therapists say is, “Yeah. Like life! Isn’t it wonderful?!?” What better way to work through your difficulty with decision making, boundary setting, staying engaged through differences, or being truly intimate with your most important people than in a laboratory where screwing up, interrupting, saying too much or too little, fumbling and losing your way are celebrated rather than shamed. Group therapy gives participants access to the full range of human emotions. It stretches us in all the best ways. Find more information here…
Do you offer a free consultation?
I offer 20 minute free consultations by phone or in person. These give us enough time to get an initial feel for each other. I also offer 50 minute consultations at my 2019 session rate of $130. You can connect for one here.
I am black or brown, fall along the gender spectrum, identify as LGBTQIA, am differently abled, fat, practice a minority religion and/or experience oppression related to my identity. How do I know your practice is safe for me?
It’s very important to me I am doing everything I can to mitigate you having another negative experience with a person of privilege. I work actively, through trainings and coursework, self-education, community opportunities and remaining as humble as I can to cultivate an anti-oppression orientation. I wish I could guarantee you will not be hurt in my office. I can’t. I don’t know what I don’t know yet. My wish is, that should you decide to try meeting with me, you know your identity is not invisible to me, I’ll step gently, yet directly into sensitive territory and I will always own my mistakes with humility.
I’m also tuned in to invisible identities (such as navigating PTSD or ADHD, grief, parenting a child with a disability, infertility and many others I’m sure) that often do go unseen in the everyday world of our work and public lives. Your hidden pain will be acknowledged in my practice too.
I’ve had unsatisfying, even harmful experiences with therapy in the past. Does it even make sense to risk working with you?
If the information on my website calls to you, then yes, absolutely. My clients say, I have impeccable boundaries. They are transparent and always in service to what’s best for you and your work. I hold all my client relationships with the respect and care I believe you deserve and you are an individual with particular needs and preferences. I do everything I can to create the safety you’ll need to let me know when something feels off in our connection. It’s bound to happen. Rupture of this kind are a healthy part of any relationship. I prioritize repair.
Change doesn’t happen through talk alone. I am aware of this and actively track the process to assure it is moving along (or in some cases has plenty of room to open up.) We will communicate regarding how things are going and check in at points throughout our work for reorientation and changes in focus. You have every right to know what I’m up to and how what I’m doing is in service to your goals. I invite you to always share your concerns, questions about our process and complaints with me directly. I welcome your frustrations and skepticism. It’s my job to demonstrate I can be trusted to be with all of your feelings and to prove through results that work with me will get you where you want to go.
What if I’m not struggling with a serious mental health issue? Does it make sense to consider therapy?
Yes. Therapy is a space you set aside for yourself. It’s a commitment of time and space you set aside to learn more about yourself and what makes you tick. Therapy with the right practitioner is enlivening. It can help you access more joy and playfulness, more confidence, more sex appeal, more emotional capacity and more energy for life. When you decide you are worth it, you take a radical step away from the status quo and towards more effectiveness, satisfaction, clarity and peace in love, your work and your life. You get out of this life what you put into it. Therapy is one way to invest in yourself.
What kinds of groups do you offer?
I specialize in interpersonal process groups, which consist of 6-10 people who come together with a shared interest in what makes us human, how we connect, how we are different and how we can all get along. Getting along doesn’t necessarily mean always being nice (people pleasers!) But learning to stay even when we are frustrated, that our differences are what make life interesting and that anger can connect us is steadying gift that can serve us to build the kind of satisfying relationships we’ve always longed for. I offer these groups in short and term forms, like and mixed gender formats. More info here…
How do I know therapy is working?
Unexpected, subtle shifts will surprise you. Of course we must learn to pay special attention to ourselves to notice these changes. It’s essential that we learn to celebrate the little gains. Learning this kindness is a core aspect of therapy with me. And I’ll be happy to celebrate while you’re still learning. Therapy with me is working when life starts to feel a little easier. When you are not striving so hard to maintain equilibrium. Change in our work just show up. It will be emergent as opposed to resulting from an impossible regimen of self-care strategies.
I have a friend or family member who is in crisis. What should I do?
I am not a crisis counselor and am unable to support clients who need more than weekly or twice weekly sessions. Suicidality and severe mental illnesses require consistant monitoring, which I am unable to provide in private practice. The Multnomah County Crisis Line (503)988-4888 is an excellent resource and phone staff there can offer you guidance to needed services.
Frequently asked questions about logistics
What’s your availability?
I see clients Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and currently most of my openings fall during the traditional work day. Sessions after 5pm do open but infrequently, so if you do not have flexibility in your schedule feel free to call and check the status of my waiting list.
Where are you located?
My office is located in the Boxlift Lofts Building at 333 NE Hancock St. near the corner of NE Broadway and MLK. I am close to downtown, just north of the Lloyd District and easy to get to from I-5 and 84.
Where can I park?
There is a parking lot for use by clients behind my building with an entrance on NE San Rafael. When the lot is full, it can be difficult to find street parking. Please give yourself extra time for walking a few blocks to my building.
Can I come to sessions every other week?
Yes and No. If you are starting individual sessions with me to prepare for group work, eventually yes. We’ll create a plan according to your readiness and move towards biweekly, monthly and potentially group only sessions.
However, attachment oriented therapy is most effective in a weekly session format. I require a commitment of at least six weekly sessions and am biased towards ongoing weekly therapy. I am happy to discuss this once we’ve begun our work.
Do you take insurance or sliding scale?
I do not bill insurance. Ethically this has been a difficult decision, as I am very committed to making my practice accessible to as broad a range of clients as possible. Because the insurance system can be disruptive to process, is pathologically oriented and functions in ways that are antithetical to my values, I have built a private pay practice.
I run groups which, I do everything I can to make accessible to clients who have limited means financially. I also offer a limited number of lower cost sessions to interested clients on a first come first serve basis. These are limited to clients who are either in group or who see me weekly.
How do you take payment?
Cash, Check or Square with a small additional processing fee. I require payment during session.