I specialize in experiential, process-oriented somatic therapy, blended with EMDR. I have been in private practice in Santa Barbara, California since 1982.
Because I have a process-oriented approach, this work crosses a broad range of issues such as anxiety, depression, trauma (episodic and developmental), relationship and family dynamics, post traumatic stress, attachment dynamics, phobias, insecurity, anger, grief, drugs and alcohol, eating disorders, obsessive and compulsive behaviours, dissociation and dissociative identity disorder, peak performance, physical pain, trauma associated with medical conditions and procedures, and more.
I provide individual and group consultations for other therapists, both in person and via Skype.
I lead workshops and trainings in process-oriented psychotherapy with a somatic focus, as well as in utilizing EMDR and variations of bilateral stimulation to access natural processing.
My path as a therapist
Throughout my career, I have sought out many multi-year trainings and consultations that aligned with my desire to understand our nature, and the nature of achieving health, emotional freedom and well-being. This initially led me to the Santa Barbara Gestalt Training Center where I completed a 3-year training just after graduate school. This work, respectfully steeped in awareness and engaging with present moment dynamics, became the basis for my evolving orientation. Through this I began to experience what it truly means to "trust in process," and to value non-interpretive approaches to therapy. My workshops with Violet Oaklander taught me how to take this understanding into working with children. Subsequently, I explored training in Hakomi and other body focused psychotherapies. I sought out couples therapy trainings that understand the natural dynamics of commited relationships, and ways to work with the challenges for growth that these create.
I was introduced to Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) in 1993. I quickly recognized that using bilateral (left-right) stimulation impacts brain functioning to accesses our organic drive to take things to completion. This had an efficiency I had never experienced before. I soon took additional training and became a Facilitator in the EMDR Institute trainings, and an Approved Consultant with the EMDR International Association.
My interest in working with the body and movement guided me to Somatic Experiencing training, and Certification as an SE Practitioner. Taking a deeper understanding of the body and the workings of the nervous system into my experience using EMDR and bilateral stimulation gave me a dynamic blend of ways to access natural propensities for growth very efficiently. This focus continues to direct my study, training and practice.
My interest in understanding how the body, mind and emotions work together led me into "Touch Training for Psychotherapists" with Kathy Kain, a gifted body worker and Somatic Experiencing Trainer. The value of utilizing touch is not traditionally understood by psychotherapists. I am so appreciative of learning the powerful impact of directing awareness through non-manipulative touch to find ways through blocked and withheld responses. Particularly with traumatic reactions, both acute and developmental, I've found that adding this approach facilitates a working through of certain difficulties that had been very challenging to access.
All this has been personally supported by a commitment to my own emotional, psychological, spiritual and physical growth. Meditation has been an important part of my path for over 35 years, and in the past 5 years I have added a practice of Qi Gong (Sheng Zhen) movements, which I find to be very helpful.
Licenses and Certifications
Licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist #MFC17516 in California since 1982
Licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist #119 in Colorado since 1989
Certified Therapist by the EMDR International Association
Certified Consultant by the EMDR Internatinal Association
Facilitator with the EMDR Institute Training Staff since 1994
Somatic Experiencing Practicioner
Somatic Experiencing Touch Skills Practitioner
MA in Counseling Psychology, University of California at Santa Barbara 1980
BA from College of William and Mary, VA 1975
EMDRIA Approved Workshops
Universtiy of California at Santa Barbara
EMDRIA International Conference
CAMFT Santa Barbara
Individual and group consultation, in person and over Skype
Graduate School Instructor
Pacifica Graduate Institute 1988-90
Antioch University 1996-98