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About us

Background

About me

My personal experience comes from many years working in the addiction and recovery field before becoming a licensed marriage and family therapist.

I have been in recovery for 27 years (it’s one day at a time) and have discovered that I’m pretty good at helping folks in recovery.

I’ve studied and worked as a substance use counselor since 2009, while also studying at JFK University for Counseling Psychology, with MFT. As an AMFT and Substance use counselor, I’ve worked in many types of agencies: in-patient services for alcohol and drug use and mental health services.

I’ve also worked for community health organizations that provide co-occurring services to youth and adults in the community.

About Us

With your goals for treatment, whether it’s your first time in treatment or your 10th time,  we can prioritize which ones you wish to address and move forward.

Creating a Safe Space

Treatment usually starts with creating a safe space to discuss and understand symptoms, triggers, the practice of current “survival coping skills”, and how you communicate your needs/wants to others. By developing your awareness of your patterns, then there is an opportunity for choice.

This can help with surmising how you feel your life has been interrupted and unhealthy for you.

The importance of creating safety allows the ability to understand how, when and why you “react” or respond” to people, places, and situations in your life.

My Approach

Besides the use of therapeutic interventions, I also draw interventions from stress management, mood and emotions interventions, such as the use of Seeking Safety for PTSD symptoms and substance use. I also like to use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to halve track patterns of negative core beliefs patterns, linking triggers and negative core beliefs to unhealthy behaviors. With the use of motivational Interviewing, it can draw out discrepancy in thinking, behaviors, and open the dialogue for making change-at your pace. I will also use expressive art techniques and writing exercises to help folks explore their unhealthy patterns.  I have found the use of multi-modality techniques to help a wide ranges of treatment goals. 

Helping You to Find the Tools for Your Healing Process

I also like worksheets, handouts, social media, TeD Talks, podcasts, and some time books, and data and research is constantly evolving and there are many self apps, documentaries and other forms of information that help to engage your activeness in your own treatment. Therapy continues after the session, it’s not just for 50 minutes a week, its daily practice of engagement throughout your week. The main goal is helping you find the tools to maintain your healing process. 

  • Recovery is a big room for healthy living.

    Starting your journey to your authentic self can be challenging and I can walk with you to explore healthier living. I want to understand how you move in the world and understand your struggles with addiction and recovery issues.

Expertise

My Life Experience

My personal experience comes from many years working in the addiction and recovery field before becoming a licensed marriage and family therapist.

I have been in recovery for 27 years (it’s one day at a time) and have discovered that I’m pretty good at helping folks in recovery.

Recovery Counseling

My Focus

Healing tends to come from within, rarely, if ever, does it come from “outside” of us. I am not only focused on 12-step programs as there are many other ways to be in recovery that promote personal growth.

I have understood that its personal choice to be in recovery and there are many ways to do it.

If 12-step programs “don’t work” for you, that is okay.

My focus is to draw from many therapeutic approaches so that your treatment suits your needs. Your treatment is just as authentic as you are and  our collaboration is intricate with focus of recovery. 

Together We Can

Together we can focus on your goals-if they are trauma-related, a need to explore relapse potentiality, seek additional coping tools that can improve self-care,  also a need to reduce anxiety and depression symptoms, explore grief and loss, and codependency traits. 

Individual Counseling

Your Experiences and Goals

As a client, you are the expert of your experience, and our sessions are about your experiences and the goals you seeking to work on.

It could be improving your communication skills with friend, family, your loved one, learning to be “less” reactive and more in response mode, mange stress, anxiety, and depressive symptoms, or finding ways to get the courage to change careers. 

Modalities I Draw From

I also draw interventions from stress management, mood and emotions interventions, use of Seeking Safety for co-occurring issues, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy ( CBT), Motivational Interviewing, and other modalities.

I have found the use of multi-modality techniques to help a wide ranges of treatment goals.

My education

I am the first in my family to go to college, of which I am proud of and it has been an incredible journey, one I encourage for anyone.

I’ve also been able to recognize the accomplishment as an opportunity to be a role model  for my family and friends. Definitely, influenced by number one change made in my life-getting sober and staying sober. 

Santa Monica College- Liberal Arts w/ Honor 2002

UC Santa Cruz- Bachelors in U.S. History 2004

San Francisco State University-Master’s In History 2007

UC Berkeley Extension- Alcohol and Drug Studies Programs, 2010

John F. Kennedy- Counseling Psychology with MFT, 2011

Professional Affiliations:

CAMFT

Monterey Bay CAMFT 2021

California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals



I’ve studied and worked as a substance use counselor since 2009, while also studying at JFK University for Counseling Psychology, with MFT. As an AMFT and Substance use counselor, I’ve worked in many types of agencies- in-patient services for alcohol and drug use and mental health services. I’ve also worked for community mental health organizations that provided co-occurring services to youth and adults in the community.

 I was licensed as an advanced alcohol and drug counselor in 2015 and later licensed  as an LMFT in 2019. All of my experience has encouraged me to help folks build healthier coping practices that support their recovery process, not only in addiction, but also with grief and loss,  depression, anxiety issues, codependency, and building communication skills.

I’ve studied and worked as a substance use counselor since 2009, while also studying at JFK University for Counseling Psychology, with MFT. As an AMFT and Substance use counselor, I’ve worked in many types of agencies- in-patient services for alcohol and drug use and mental health services. I’ve also worked for community mental health organizations that provided co-occurring services to youth and adults in the community.

 I was licensed as an advanced alcohol and drug counselor in 2015 and later licensed  as an LMFT in 2019. All of my experience has encouraged me to help folks build healthier coping practices that support their recovery process, not only in addiction, but also with grief and loss,  depression, anxiety issues, codependency, and building communication skills.