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My treatment philosophy is influenced by attachment theory, relational psychodynamic psychotherapy, especially intersubjective self psychology (what's happening in the here and now between us), and affect regulation theory (what is the person's experience of dys-regulation and how do they attempt to regulate themselves, even and especially when it causes further "problems"?).  When I explain my approach to clients, I often stress the importance of the therapeutic relationship, the curiosity-rooted focus on the "here and now" and "in the room" interactions, and offer the hope-filled and reality-based goals of working toward a greater capacity for emotion regulation, self reflection and understanding, and ultimately a stronger relationship with oneself and others.

As a relational therapist, I weave between "here and now" interactions and events and how they might help us understand patterns and organizational templates (self and other expectations) that have developed from past relationships and experiences, while also exploring from an attachment and dynamic perspective past relationships and conflicts, and how they may influence present day symptoms.  I'm also interested in the connections between stress, trauma and somatic experience, and help clients recognize connections those experiences as well as aim to reduce/eliminate symptomatic sensations through incorporating experiential practices including relationally-based work, mindfulness, parts work, externalizing and reframing.

I have three distinct niches, which often, but not always occur together.  The first is anxiety.  I work largely with elementary age children who are just getting to know their anxiety, and with adults who have been haunted by anxiety for years.  I love this specialty because while anxiety often expresses itself in similar ways (intrustive worry thoughts, uncomfortable body sensations), treating anxiety requires an integrated and creative approach!  This work typically entails helping clients identify and normalize a spectrum of affective experiences, connect emotions with physical and physiological sensations, look for cognitive expressions of anxiety and teach them a variety of self-regulating strategies.  I also incorporate family and parts work with children, and help adults explore anxiety from a dynamic/relational approach, as appropriate.  My second niche is working with adults who have experienced trauma, especially complex and relational trauma.  I particularly enjoy this specialty because I believe my attachment/intersubjective/self psychology background offers my clients a sense of being understood that leads to lasting change.  I enjoy facilitating a consistent relational process in which clients can move from a place of shame, affect dys-regulation, and disorganized protective strategies to an inner feeling of strength and compassion, a stronger sense of consistent and positive self-identity and a belief in their ability to self regulate and connect with others in healthy ways.  Finally, I have developed a specialization in "Neural pathway disorders" or mind-body issues.  This area of interest grew out my increased awareness of how frequently somatic discomfort and pain (chronic pain, fibromyalgia, vertigo, IBS) occurs with early relational trauma and chronic, dys-regulated anxiety.  I often recommend at least two appointments weekly for patients who have long-standing complex trauma and/or mind-body concerns.

Education and Training:  I am currently a candidate with the Institute for the Psychoanalytic Study of Subjectivity in NYC.  Through this program I receive ongoing consultation with a variety of reputable, well-published clinical psychoanalysts and attachment researchers, as well as learn more about my own self through personal psychoanalysis.  I also attend peer consultation and educational groups via the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Workers.  I have advanced postgraduate training in Trauma Therapy through the International Association of Trauma Professionals, Mind-Body Issues via the Psychophysiologic Disorders Association, Narrative Therapy from the Dulwich Centre and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy through the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia.  I am a graduate of Bryn Mawr College's Department of Social Service (MSS/MLSP) and Rutgers University (BA).  I currently teach Social Work courses at La Salle University.

Sample of Past Presentations:  

The Dead Mother:  Making Psychoanalytic Sense of Covid 19, Institute for the Psychoanalytic Study of Subjectivity.

Sparkling Moments in relational Therapy, Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Workers.

Shame, Shame Resilience and Self Psychology, Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Workers.

Observation, Consultation & Reflective Supervision: Thriving Together, Early Head Start, Burlington County Community Action Program.

Attachment Theory, Early Head Start, Burlington County Community Action Program.

The Stress-Trauma Continuum and Infant-Caregiver Mental Health, Head Start, Burlington County Community Action Program.

Sesame Street Incarceration: Little Children, Big Challenges,  Camden City School District.

The Health-Mental Health Connection: Trauma Across the Lifetime, Philadelphia Refugee Resettlement Provider Collaborative.

Introduction to Mindfulness, Nationalities Service Center.

De-escalation, Jewish Family and Children’s Services, Cherry Hill, NJ. 

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