Who I Am
I have been working in the counseling and mental health field for over 37 years. I started working in mental health facilities in my early 20’s while I was in college. I have worked with adults and adolescents in all kinds of modalities, yet I seem to focus more towards young people and their families with substance abuse problems. Some of that stems from having to deal with my own addictions in my late teens and finally getting clean and sober at 20. Thus, I understand what it is like to be overwhelmed by addiction and to be engaged in a recovery process.
As a family therapist, my background in the Family Systems approach was the foundation of my studies at San Diego State University in the 1980’s. Upon graduation, I was privileged to study and practice solution-focused and narrative therapies with some of the founding members in the early 1990’s like Insoo Kim Berg and Michael White. I have an extensive background in chemical dependency. I directed several drug abuse facilities in San Diego in the 80's and 90's. I also work with addictions other than drugs and alcohol, such as Sex Addiction, Gambling Addiction, and Eating Disorders. When the addictions are stabilized, I continue the therapeutic process working on Trauma/PTSD issues, Anxiety, and Depression. During this process I incorporate a sense of fun.
I like to help people to help themselves. I spend a lot of time helping my clients to become active members in their lives, and not by playing video games or spending 100's of hours on social media. Because I am an avid rock climber, marathon runner, mountaineer, and yoga instructor, I want my clients to experience that same fun I get instead of seeking that "Something on the outside to fix me on the inside." I advocate any level of physical activity and healthy eating to stay drug and alcohol free and spiritually fit.