“The things that trouble us can be blurry up close. It often takes the work of therapy to bring them into focus.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist? What inspired you to choose this profession?
My path to becoming a therapist began in college, where I studied psychology, conducted research on post-traumatic stress, and got a taste of clinical work on my campus suicide hotline. I found myself fascinated by the social determinants of human development. This led me to social work school, where I became engrossed in clinical practice and psychodynamic theory. From there, I completed three years of institute training and earned a certificate in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy.
What would you want someone to know about working with you?
When we meet for a session, you'll share whatever is on your mind — there is no topic too big or too small. I'll help you recognize patterns, connect the dots, and make sense of it all. We'll work to identify what stands between you and your goals, paying close attention to internal obstacles of which you may not be so aware. The things that trouble us can be blurry up close. It often takes the work of therapy to bring them into focus.
What do you think is the biggest barrier today for people seeking care?
In addition to issues around stigma and access to care, I think a major barrier to therapy is our doubt that change is possible. It can be hard to imagine shifting long-standing dynamics, habits, and thought patterns. We can also be fearful of change because of the loss that accompanies it. It's my job to facilitate the process of mourning, acceptance, and empowerment so that my clients can move forward in their lives and reach their potential.
If there was one thing you wish people knew about the therapy experience who might be hesitant to try it, what would that be?
Some hesitancy is normal when going into a new and unknown experience. There's a certain amount of courage that's necessary to seek therapy, but I believe that everyone can benefit from it. The experience of having our stories heard is very powerful. The clarity it brings enables us to live fuller, more liberated lives.
If you could pick one or two books that influenced your approach to therapy what would they be and why?
The Examined Life by Stephen Grosz is one book that really resonated with me. Psychotherapy is so much more than the treatment of symptoms. It’s a shared journey of curiosity, understanding, and growth. Grosz captured that for me. As he explains, "when we cannot find a way of telling our story, our story tells us.”
“The experience of having our stories heard is very powerful. The clarity it brings enables us to live fuller, more liberated lives.”
Melanie practices at Alma