As of June 2016 I have been able to focus my full time attention to serving individuals, couples and families in my private practice exclusively. Although I worked full time as a special education high school teacher in a residential school for adolescents with serious emotional issues for many years, with college students at SRJC in the Disability Resource Department, and with children and their families at Sonoma County Youth and family services, the thrust of my private practice has been with adults. Some of my clients want to focus on immediate parenting or marital issues; others are seeking in-depth support for dealing with residual issues from traumatic or abusive experiences in their childhood; while others need a listening ear as they sort out difficult life transition issues. My desire is to provide a safe place where one can experience his or her life fully and begin to integrate all aspects, the strong and the weak, the hurt and the whole, the happy and the sad as a fully awake and alive individual.
Because of my full time work in residential treatment, I began my private practice only available to offer my counseling services at CCA on Saturdays. This worked out so well for many whose work week allows little flexibility for weekday counseling that I continue to offer Saturday appointments, while expanding into Fridays and Mondays in the CCA office in Wikiup. I also provide both group and individual therapy in a local RGM woman’s drug and alcohol treatment program at Manna Home and at their 30 day women’s and children’s shelter, The Rose, in Santa Rosa.
In addition to using the standard techniques of psychodynamic counseling (talk-therapy) from an eclectic array of treatment models, I am also well trained and widely experienced in using the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) to address self-image issues, self-harm, anger, bitterness, fears, phobias, addiction, and trauma as they impact ones relationships. I have found significant and lasting results for even difficult and persistent issues on a consistent basis during my nearly 20 years of using this technique, especially when coupled with prayerful application of Biblical principles under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
My Personal History
Married for enough years to experience the requisite ups and downs necessary to realize that I am unable to judge anyone for anything they may be experiencing in their lives or marriage.
Mother of 5 grown children with the requisite ups and downs necessary to realize that I cannot take credit for the way my kids turned out.
Raised in the “church” long enough to know that it requires more grace and love to be in relationship with others than I have on my own; and that even good churches can be hurtful places sometimes.
Worked with teens in residential treatment for long enough to have them sending me photos of their own families, for whom they are trying to do their best.
Studied at almost as many colleges as I have kids: MA in Counseling Psychology from University of San Francisco, Special Education Teaching Credential from Sonoma State University, BFA in Acting and Directing from USIU-SPVA and Undergraduate work at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. I am currently engaged in a Nutritional Psychology Certificate Program through JFK University where I also completed training to be able to offer supervision to Marriage and Family, Social Work and Psychology Interns as they complete their clinical training toward state licensure.
My Counseling Philosophy
In the New Testament Peter reminds us that through his “divine power”, Jesus has given us everything we need for “life and godliness through our knowledge of him”. One of the prophetic names of Jesus is “Wonderful Counselor”. Knowing Jesus as our counselor is one of the most powerful ways we can access the resources Peter was talking about for living life as we are created to live it.
In studying and preparing to become a professional, licensed counselor I believe I am living out one of the aspects of who I am created to be. It is my heart’s desire that I be, not only a skilled professional with my clients, but also a partner with them in laying hold of the provisions Jesus has given them for their own “life and godliness”. I have been continually challenged and humbled by the honest, courageous work of my clients and students over the past 20 years as we have purposely pursued healing in hurting relationships with themselves, others and our Creator together.
Even though this is a Christian Counseling Center, not all of my clients have been Christians. The level of spirituality that enters the session is, of course, determined by my clients.
Nothing gives me more of a sense of fulfillment and purpose than to see my students and my clients “graduate”. To see them move forward in the pursuit of their personal goals and dreams, ready to take on the next phase of their life, is my desire and the goal of my therapeutic practice as much as it was and is my desire and goal for my own children.
Training and Experience
- MA, University of San Francisco
- LMFT, California Board of Behavioral Sciences
- Supervisor Certification, JFK University
- Member CAMFT
- Sonoma County Behavioral Clinician, Youth and Family Services
- Santa Rosa Junior College, Disability Specialist
- Family Life Center
- Education Specialist Credential, Sonoma State University
- BFA, USIU-SPVA, San Diego
- Conference Speaker
- Parenting Coach
- Performing Arts Director
- Home School Teacher/Mom
- Sunday School Teacher
- Pastoral Staff