An unspoken and deep-rooted belief in the Black community is that therapy is taboo. Growing up, I constantly heard that if you have a problem, talk to your pastor first, then maybe your family, after that, keep your mouth shut. Under no circumstance were you to seek “outside” help from a therapist. Therapists were thought to be strangers, “head doctors,” “not like us” and were not to be trusted. And we had reason to be wary and skeptical, given the history of the mistreatment of black people in this country by “helping professionals”.
But I am here to tell you there is NO SHAME in asking for or seeking help. It takes strength to say “I am struggling and I have tried but I need help.” And sometimes, we need to talk to someone who is not in our immediate circle, someone objective, someone who is there solely to help you explore, navigate and mitigate what you are going through. And sometimes, the one thing you need to take that leap is to know that the helping person looks like and understands you. And that is ok. That is why we are here.
I am a Black, southern raised Virgo who just passed my ten-year mark living in Los Angeles. I am a member of Thrive Psychology Group, a private group practice in Los Angeles, CA that primarily focuses on serving the unique needs of professional women. Bold, brave, and badass women who are struggling with the pressures of performing in a society that often places roadblocks in their path, short changes them, or ignores them altogether. For those who identify as Black, Indigenous, or a person of color, it can be all the more challenging, and yet, we persevere. I see individuals and couples. While I am thrilled to work with all clients (yes that includes the men in the room), my practice focuses on assisting those whose issues and existence is often excluded from the dominant narrative, particularly Black women, BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, those on the Autism spectrum (formally known as Asperger's), Couples, and those in Interracial/Intercultural or Polyamorous relationships.
We are all doing the best we can with what we have at any given moment and sometimes, we need help. My goal as a therapist is to provide a space where you can safely and confidently explore what has happened, what is going on, and what you want. That awareness is power! Once you have awareness, you have more of a choice, and once you have a choice, change is possible. Because you made the choice to seek out therapy, whether you choose to work with me or someone else, I believe that the changes you desire to make for yourself are very much possible!
I am systemically trained, which means I will often highlight the impact of various factors on your wellbeing and your relationships. I use humanistic, narrative, socio-cultural, positive psychology, and strength-based (solution-focused) theories. In short, I help you explore different perspectives that will ideally generate ideas for the change you desire. The reality is that we are all affected by biological, psychological, and social factors. We do not live in isolation, so it would be remiss of me not to acknowledge the often oppressive, restrictive, and weighty structures that influence our world. I believe it is imperative to address these intersectional factors in the room and will not shy away from bringing up age, gender, race, socioeconomic status, ability, and religion (to name a few) for exploration. You are who you are, let’s acknowledge and embrace it all while we challenge those things that aim to bring you down.
Traditionally, therapy has focused on pathology (what is wrong), and while I agree it is important to identify and rectify issues that cause pain and disruption, I also strongly believe that therapy can and should focus on strengths, meaning, purpose, and how to live life to the fullest. I encourage my clients to take the lead during the process and together we create a plan based on your goals. I will supportively hold you accountable, gently challenge, and fiercely encourage you.
If what you read here speaks to you, please send me an email or head over to my website where you can check out my video, and book a free 30-minute consultation!