About My Practice
Thanks for your interest. My practice is located near old town Alexandria, VA, just off I-495 at Telegraph Road. You can reach me by phone at 202-596-6036.
As you can probably tell from these pages I take a very positive approach to life's problems and attempt to see them in practical but realistic terms. Psychotherapy is not about "fixing broken people," it is about helping individuals cope and thrive amidst difficulties that are usually not their own doing. I learn a lot from my clients and respect them, and I count it a privilege to do the work I do.
My style of therapy is very active, taking the lead from my clients wishes and needs. We usually formulate a plan of treatment together. I support, cheer, and encourage them to take calculated risks and help them decide what they need to do next for themselves. The therapy process is a partnership...my job as a professional is to be present, available, and competent. I do not cross the line between professional and social relationships. That is for the safety of both the client and myself.
I was fortunate to have a broad basis of training in graduate school. As a result, I am committed to approaching problems from a thoughts, feelings and behavior basis. My most basic training was originally in psychodynamic therapy, which means I have solid training in family dynamics and how they affect individuals growing up.
My early training included practical work in school psychology, at an inpatient psychiatric hospital, and at an outpatient clinic at a major teaching hospital. In these situations I had the privilege of working with a variety of children, adolescents, and adults.
In more recent years I have taken training in several additonal fields. I have taken the professional training that Patrick Carnes, Ph.D. offers in treating sexual addiction, as well as additional work in neurofeedback, a brain-based form of biofeedback. Most recently I have had several years of training in Gestalt therapy at the Pensylvania Gestalt Center. Presently I have my own individual practice in Alexandria, VA.
My philosophy of practice
One of my most basic philosophies of practice is to "put the cookies on the lower shelf." By that I mean that the psychotherapy process does not have to be mysterious or strange. The basic concepts should be understandable to the client. Goals are clearly stated, tasks between therapy sessions may be assigned, and an honest and open working realtionship is established.
Therapy is not all dry and sad in my office. My clients and I laugh when things are funny, and I have been teased more than once. But when it is time to be serious, which is the vast majority of the time, then the mood is serious. I do not view people as problems, but suggest that people have problems. The problems people bring to me are serious and are treated that way. I hear stories of people who have seen therapists who minimized their difficulties. As I have said on many occasions, your feelings are important, not because they are right or wrong, but because they are yours.
Thinking about seeking help?
If you feel that I may be of help to you, do not hesitate to call. A call is not a commitment. We can sit down and discuss your concerns and see what seems best for you. A one-session consultation can be a good investment in your future, regardless of whether we work together on an ongoing basis. We can seek to identify the nature of your difficulties and map out a strategy for you to get beyond them.