You question your response when you try to reassure your child/teen after he shares his worries with you. Sometimes it seems like it backfires! You feel like you missed the mark when you attempted to manage her behavior when she pushes the limits. It is SO FRUSTRATING, and it keeps you up at night.
I can help!
I provide play therapy to anxious children who may have a problem with aggression in the home or in school. I have specialized training in treating early childhood trauma.
I provide therapy using creative means to engage teens with anxiety and depression. I have specialized training in treating teens who contemplate suicide or self-harm.
I collaborate with parents to help them feel more in control when their child’s emotions are out of control.
I enjoy using creativity and build a warm, non-judgmental, blunt & sarcastic relationship to meet my client’s needs. Children enjoy working with me because I create an accepting environment where feelings are okay, and fun to explore! Teens often say I am helpful to them because I am ‘real’ and don’t sugarcoat our discussions.
Parents prefer our work together because I am patient, and I make sure you give yourself a break! We are a team on this rollercoaster of your kid’s emotions, and I will support you mostly with humor and practical tools. I work hard to make feelings talk less awkward for families.
I work with parents both with my therapy clients, or separately as a parent consultant, if you feel your child does not need the full support of a therapist.
My Clinical Expertise
I have specialized training in trauma-focused play therapy, Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Sandtray therapy, animal-assisted play therapy, and early childhood development and social skills.
I have been working with children, teens, and their families since 2009. I have prior experience in school and community mental health for children and adolescents for the Fairfax County, Virginia Government, as well as residential treatment and clinical supervision within the Sheppard Pratt Health System. I am a Registered Supervisor in the state of Maryland.
I earned my Master of Arts degree in Community Counseling from The George Washington University in 2009, and became licensed as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in Virginia in 2013. I moved to Maryland in 2014 and am also a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC). I earned my Bachelor of Arts in Human Services at Villanova University in 2007.
As a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor (RPT-S), I use specialized toys and art supplies to engage your child in expressing their emotions.
What the Heck is a Play Therapist?
Play Therapy theory explains play as the child’s language, and toys as their words. This perspective guides my interpretation of a child’s interactions to help families cope with traumatic experiences and/or problem behaviors. I use this excitement for creativity in my work with youth ages 2-18, and enjoy working with adults for parent guidance.
In play therapy, children have access to toys in the therapy room, to say with the toys what they struggle saying with words. When children can play out how they feel with someone who understands, they feel better because the feelings have been communicated. They can use the toys to say what they think or how they feel. Thus, how children play or what they do in the playroom is very important, just like what you say in a private session is very important. In play therapy children learn how to express their thoughts and feelings in appropriate ways, to manage their behavior to make decisions, and to accept responsibility. [Adapted from Landreth, 2012]
More About Me
I grew up in New England, spending my summers at the beach. When I’m not working I can be found walking my dog Porter (who is in training to be a therapy dog), teaching Zumba, or out on adventures with my growing family. I am also constantly reading and dreaming up the next time I can put my toes in the sand.