What do you mean by gifted children and adults?

Popular perception of giftedness focuses on high intellectual ability, but giftedness encompasses many other qualities, such as high levels of empathy, sensitivity, intensity, insight, perfectionism, and the “overexcitabilities” identified by Kazimierz Dabrowski: psychomotor, sensual, intellectual, imaginational, and emotional. Gifted individuals often face unique challenges such as high levels of self-criticism, existential depression (struggling with the meaning of life), and difficulty in finding peers. In addition, gifted individuals are often poorly misunderstood and misdiagnosed by mental health professionals who are unaware of the concept of giftedness.

Isn’t the term gifted elitist? Isn’t everyone gifted?

I believe that every person has inherent worth as well as a unique contribution to make to the world. However, I use the term “gifted” as the commonly accepted term for referring to those among us who are more sensitive, more intense, just a little more than other people.

What is your style of working with clients?

I am firmly rooted in a relational stance with my clients, which means that I believe that the relationship we develop while working together is the most important element of therapy. It will allow us to understand how you both relate to others as well as all of the parts of your self. The initial stage of therapy will be primarily focused on us getting to know each other. As a trauma-informed clinician, I want my client to take the lead in determining when you are comfortable sharing your thoughts, experiences, and aspects of self; trust takes a while to develop, and I do not push anyone to reveal things before they are ready to do so. While the work we do in therapy is largely internal, I am also keenly aware of the ways in which our various identities shape how we move through the world and how we are treated by other people. I do not see these as “political” issues outside of the therapy room; rather, they are a vital part of our experience and I encourage exploration of these larger issues in therapy. I am also aware of the power differential in our culture between provider and client, and strive to dismantle this by developing a collaborative relationship with the clients I work with.

How long will therapy take?

Each person’s journey is unique. Some clients will find what they need in working with me for a few months, while others may work with me for years. I both solicit and welcome feedback from clients about how therapy is working for you.

Do you work with children?

Yes. I work with children ages ten and up, and I particularly enjoy working with adolescents. If your child is younger than ten but you feel we might be a good match, contact me and we can discuss the needs of your particular child.