I've worked with children and families in a variety of settings for nearing 20 years. These settings have included residential treatment facilities for children and adolescents, outpatient mental health clinics, a hospice, and educational institutions, including a memorable year at a boarding school for exceptionally talented ballet students. I'm also an adjunct professor for The American Military University's Child Health and Family Development Program.
I obtained my bachelors of science at The Catholic University of America, graduating magna cum laude. I earned a masters of science with honors in marriage and family therapy from the University of Maryland, College Park. I'm licensed as an LCMFT (licensed clinical marriage and family therapist) in The State of Maryland.
As a marriage and family therapist, I work from a systems-based model. Traditional psychotherapy comes out of the medical model, which focuses on an "identified patient," that is, "the person with the problem." By contrast, systems models emphasize relationships as the means to solutions for life's challenges. For example, in traditional psychotherapy, the problem is that the child is bad, because he/she won't do homework, or the parents are bad, because they can't get the kid to do the homework. Traditionally, the solution is either to fix the kid or to fix the parents. In a systems-based approach, the challenge is that the parents and the kid have yet to figure out how to establish effective rules around homework and take care of whatever upset the kid is expressing with resistance to the rules. The solution to these challenges is found in improving the interactions between parents and child. My clients aren't "people with problems." My clients are people who create interactional solutions to the challenges they face.