Professional Certifications and Licenses
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) #112958
I provide compassionate and informed psychotherapy to individuals, families, and couples who are experiencing grief over the death of a significant person in their lives. Additionally, I work with clients who are anticipating the loss of a loved one or significant figure in their lives, particularly caregivers of all ages who are looking for additional support to weather through the dying process of their loved one.
Oftentimes, clients come to therapy to process unresolved grief. Perhaps there was a strained or ruptured relationship with the deceased. Oftentimes, their death causes painful emotions to resurface. In other cases, many clients served in the role of caregiver and experience unique feelings due to their dual roles of family member/partner and caregiver. Most former caregivers I work with share that they were unable to manage anticipating the grief over losing their loved one; instead, they felt they had to “put those feelings on hold” until after their loved one died and found that their grief began to take shape a few months after the death. Many clients also grieve the loss of their role as caregiver in addition to their loved one.
Caregivers often have a mixture of emotions, some that cause shame. These include feeling reluctant to take on the role of caregiver, ambiguous feelings about the eventual death of their loved one (sometimes wishing their loved one would pass in order to be free from suffering, burdens, etc.), resentment, and even anger toward the dying or ill loved one. I work with clients to sort all of these emotions out at a safe and healing pace in order to bring resolution so that clients can choose with clarity how they wish to rejoin their own experiences of living.
I also work with clients who are experiencing traumatic loss. Traumatic loss is experienced by those who have lost a loved one or significant person in their lives under conditions that are traumatic (e.g., a car accident, homicide, sudden illness, etc.). It also includes instances where a person discovers their loved one’s body after they passed. Sometimes individuals experience symptoms of trauma in addition to grief, including flashbacks, nightmares, feelings of dread or doom, mistrust, paranoia, hypervigilance, uncontrollable rage, severe isolation, and disillusionment.
My approach is depth-oriented and rooted in respecting your experience and wishes for the future. Great care is taken to explore how you wish to integrate your experience of loss into your present life and how you envision carrying forward your connection or relationship to your lost loved one. My role involves companioning you through this journey, regarding you as the expert and also providing some tethering in the form of psychoeducation and reflection.
Grief is a holistic experience that involves all of us: not just our thoughts and beliefs, but our emotions and physical reactions as well. Sometimes words fail to express the heaviness or darkness we experience. During these times, it may be more comforting to work with non-verbal tools like art, writing, music, or relaxation techniques. Mindfulness tools like deep breathing help us learn to tolerate overwhelming emotions and unlock deeper parts of ourselves that are well-equipped for this journey through the underworld of loss and grief.
Grief is often regarded as something to experience in private. However, research continues to shed light on the importance of community in moving through the grief process more effectively. I invite you to reach out for support if you find yourself wishing to move through present or unresolved grief. I would be honored to accompany you.
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