I am a Registered Clinical Psychotherapist (PACFA) and worked previously as a senior clinician within the public mental health system. I have been in private practice for over 15 years. My tertiary education in psychotherapy includes a Masters degree in Psychoanalytic Studies and a four year training program in Gestalt Therapy. I have completed further education and training in PTSD, Complex Trauma, Neuroscience, EMDR , MIndfulness and Grief and Loss.
I've been around a while and worked in a lot of different areas in mental health including inpatient units, community mental health services, self harm and suicide intervention programs, crisis management, Youth, gender dysphoria, sexual assault and trauma and group therapy programs.
When am not working I love to read, swim, hang out in the bush, nurture my indoor plants, enjoy art of all descriptions, learn French (for the last twenty years! ), travel whenever given the opportunity and hang out with my dog, Elliot. I love the ocean, but live in the bush, which I also love. I am passionate about human rights, am a student of Buddhism (for most of my adult life), love neuroscience and fascinated with theories of the mind and consciousness.
I was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for my work at ground zero - Paddy's Bar and the Sari Club - following the first Bali bombing in 2002.
Professional Memberships and Registrations
PACFA - Clinical Member (Psychotherapists and Counsellors Federation Australia)
ARCAP - Australian Register of Counsellors and Psychotherapists
ISSTD - (International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation)- member
I am listed as :
A recommended therapist for students undergoing training through
Gestalt Institute of WA.
Registered Counsellor with Cancer Council WA
What I do ...
I see clients for both short term counselling and long term psychotherapy. Some of the things that people come to see me about on a regular basis include but certainly not restricted to:
Depression and Anxiety
Trauma and Abuse (emotional, physical, sexual, neglect, abandonment/attachment)
EMDR for trauma
Personal Issues and Life Transitions
Grief and Bereavment
Difficulty Managing Emotions (including Borderline PD)
Lack of life satisfaction
My approach to therapy is to facilitate emotional and personal growth through developing awareness, insight and self acceptance.
I am pretty laid back and dont stand on ceremony. I want you to feel as comfortable as possible, as soon as possible, so that you are able to tell me what you need to for us to start our work together.
Clinical Supervision for Therapists
I offer clinical supervision and case consultation for therapists and counsellors working with clients presenting with complex trauma and dissociative disorders.
I know that the thought of counselling can be a little (or a lot) daunting for some people. See blog entry 'First Sessions'. . No matter what issues you are coming to counselling for the most important goal is for you to feel emotionally safe as much as possible. I am always lead by you in the work that you want to do and the direction you want to go in therapy.
I do ask lots of questions, both for me to find out about you and for you to think about things that you might not have thought about. I used a 'phased approach' (as per best practice guidelines Blue Knot Foundation and ISSTD) if we are working on trauma. This means that we dont go to places that you are not ready or dont wont to go. I am quite open, fairly unshockable, at times irreverent (but never about my clients) and like to be able to share a few laughs, which, even in the most bleak and desperate of situations, can help healing.
Many of my clients have experienced childhood events outside their control, including sexual abuse, neglect, witnessing or experiencing domestic violence and emotional abuse or parents who were 'unavailable' for many different reasons.
I have completed additional advanced training in working with people who have experienced complex trauma (most recently with Bessel Van der Kolk who wrote 'The body keeps the score' and Janina Fisher) and have many years experience working in this area . I have training in EMDR which is recognised as 'The gold standard' in treating single incident trauma and can be used in some complex trauma as well.
My work pivots on mindfulness and helping my clients develop this wonderful skill that can be truly life changing. It is fundamental that we have an awareness of what is going on within us (that is where we hold particular emotions in our body/interoception) and what triggers this in order to be able to do something about it.
I also utilise Psychodynamic/Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, Internal Family Systems and Gestalt Therapy. I am passionate about neuroscience and see it as imperitive to informing all psychotherapy practice.