Information about Me and My Approach to Therapy

Many people believe that marriage and family therapists do only marriage counseling or family therapy, but most of the work I do is with individual adult clients.  I love to do couples therapy and to work with families, but as a rule, those seeking help with problems in their lives and relationships usually do so on an individual basis.  My approach to therapy can be described as psychodynamic or depth-oriented, which means that I help clients to understand how unconscious attitudes and decisions are affecting their lives, often in ways that cause them a great deal of unhappiness.

 

In helping clients understand what's happening in the unconscious, I use an approach that emphasizes integrating the different aspects of our psychic selves into a unified whole.  In therapy, I especially help clients explore those aspects of themselves that they don't like or don't accept.  We often fear those parts of ourselves, but their energy is there waiting to be used in a positive way. Dream analysis is very important in this process, and one of the things I do as a therapist will be to help you understand what your dreams are telling you.

Being a marriage and family therapist is a second career for me. I used to be a college English instructor, and I loved to teach and write about literature. When I decided to change careers, I soon discovered how well my former profession prepared me for this one.  To understand literature, you always have to listen for what's not being directly stated, for an author may not explain why a character says or does a certain thing. We have to intuit that meaning, read between the lines, as it were, in order to fully comprehend the lives unfolding before us on the page.

Doing psychotherapy entails something very similar. When clients tell me their stories, I always listen to what is not being stated directly, because that is when the unconscious is speaking. It is almost impossible for us do this ourselves without assistance, because the unconscious is just that, beyond our conscious awareness, and we all need help to understand how it works in our uniquely individual lives.

 

Education

M.S. Counseling, California State University—Fresno
Ph.D. English Literature, Rice University
M.A. English Literature, Rice University
B.A. English, University of Texas at Austin

Licenses

Marriage and Family Therapist (MFC 50383)

Professional Clinical Counselor (LPC 108)

Certification

National Board of Certified Counselors

Associations

California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
The International Society for the Psychological Treatments of Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses             National Board for Certified Counselors

Publications

"When Dante Closed His Eyes: Why the Therapist's Resistance Matters," The Therapist: Magazine of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists 26 (2014): 6-10.

"The Threat of Therapy: Countertransference and Resistance," The Therapist: Magazine of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists 25 (2013): 19-23.

“Psychotherapy and the Silent Client:  An Example,” The Central Valley Therapist (2011, April-June):  4-5.

 “Psychotherapy and the Technological Fix,” The Central Valley Therapist (2011, January-March):  4-5.

 “Anger, Rage, and Implicit Memory,” The Central Valley Therapist (2010, April-June): 2-4.

“Schizophrenia: Signs and Treatment. An Interview with Therapist Larry Langford,” Associated Content (2010): Yahoo! News Network, 
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/6071906/schizophrenia_signs_and_treatment.html?cat=70

Letter to the Editor, “Psychotherapy and Medications,” The Therapist 21 (2009): 6.

“Therapeutic Insight: What It Is, What It Isn’t,” The Central Valley Therapist (2009, April-June): 1-3.

“Pornography, Process, and Content,” Grapevine, Newsletter of CAMFT-CSJVC (2008, July-September): 9-10.

“Pituitary Gland Disorders and MFT Scope of Practice,” Grapevine, Newsletter of CAMFT-CSJVC (2008, April-June): 1-2.

Fiction and the Social Contract: Genocide, Pornography, and the Deconstruction of History. New York: Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., 1998. Nominated for the Modern Language Association’s award for the best book by an independent scholar.

“The Unsocial Socialism of John Osborne,” English Studies 78 (1997): 237-257.

“Fetishism and Fantasy in Bennett’s The Old Country and Single Spies,” University of Mississippi Studies in English 11-12 (1993-95): 361-375.

“Britain and the Film of Empire 1929-1939,” The Critical Review 35 (1995): 106-126.

“Adam and the Subversion of Paradise,” Studies in English Literature 24 (1994): 119-134.

“Retelling Moll’s Story: The Editor’s Preface to Moll Flanders,” The Journal of Narrative Technique 22 (1992): 164-179.

“Postmodernism and Enlightenment, or Why Not a Fascist Aesthetics?” SubStance 21 (1992): 24-43.

“How Many Children Had Molly Bloom?: Sons and Lovers in Ulysses,” Literature and Psychology 34 (1988): 27-40.

“’The Story Shall be Changed’: The Senecan Sources of A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Cahiers Élisabéthains 25 (1984): 37-51.