• Individual Therapy
  • Group Therapy
  • Family and Couples Counseling
  • Workshops - stress management, mindfulness
  • EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)


  • Children and Teenagers
  • Trauma, Abuse, and PTSD
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Adjustment issues
  • Self-esteem
  • Increasing positive coping skills

What You Should Know About Counseling

What is Counseling?

Counseling is a long-established practice, which has taken many forms and shapes over the years. The goal of therapy is to help you gain more insight into yourself, the world around you, and for you to learn to apply this insight into making positive changes in yourself and in your life.

Unlike common media and pop culture portrayals of therapy, counseling does not involve laying down on a couch and talking about dreams. Nor is counseling like talking with a friend who offers advise and tells you what they think you should do. Therapy needs to be an active and dynamic process. Effective therapy requires a counselor who is well trained and actively involved in listening and understanding the client as a unique and complex person with specific strengths, weaknesses, and interpersonal dynamics of feelings, thoughts and actions. My approach to therapy involves empowering you to develop new healthy patterns of coping and to use your own resources to make the changes you want to make in your life. Counseling can be on a one-to-one basis (individual therapy) or in a group format where more than 2 people are present in the session (couples therapy, family therapy, group therapy).

Common Difficulties in Counseling

The choice to begin counseling is an important, yet often difficult, decision in a person’s life.

People sometimes feel embarrassed and worried about being judged by their therapist. Other people are looking to be “fixed”. However, your mind, your feelings, your actions, and your patterns of choices are infinitely more complex than taking your car into the mechanic for servicing. Counseling is a process which is shorter for some people and longer for others. You will not be able to attend two or three sessions and be "fixed."

Often after some initial relief, which many clients experience in the first few sessions of counseling, most people will encounter an increase in their subjective level of distress (in other words, feel worse). This is because we will start to work on, examine, and change those unhealthy patterns and this takes a huge amount of energy. You may feel tired, irritable, and experience emotions more intensely than you have in the past. This is a normal, yet uncomfortable, part of becoming more balanced and healthy.

What can you expect from your counselor and the process of therapy?

You can expect to be treated with dignity and respect. You can expect that I will be open and honest with you. New thoughts and feelings usually arise which can be confusing and scary at first. As with any process of change, you can expect to have times of struggle and challenge, yet you will also have increased support in your life. You can expect some “homework or assignments” periodically from me as this allows you to focus and practice new skills and behaviors outside of sessions.

What is play therapy?

Since children communicate differently than adults, play therapy is a way for children to “talk”, express their thoughts and feelings using play, toys, art, and other creative and expressive processes. Although “playing” can sometimes seem meaningless to adults, it allows the therapist to better understand the child and help them work through the complex thoughts and feelings that are troubling them.

What can you expect when your child is in therapy?

During the first session, I will meet with you and your child and take an extensive history of the current problem and past history. After the initial session, I will typically meet with you alone or with you and your child for the first 10 minutes of the session, to find out how things have been going. You can expect that your child’s behavior and symptoms will typically get worse at first as they test the limits and the important adults in their life to see if those adults will follow-through in supporting and encouraging positive changes. You may also be asked to make certain changes in your home and or parenting style to help your child make his/her changes. You can also expect that while I will keep you apprised on important information, what your child and I talk about is private and your child needs to know that what we talk about stays between us (with the exception of safety issues, suicidal ideation, homicidal ideation, and/or disclosures of abuse.)

What is EMDR?

EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It is a technique for processing traumatic events and/or lesser events, which was developed by Francine Shapiro during her work with veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The technique uses bilateral stimulation (alternating left and right brain stimulation) in the form of eye movements to help process traumatic events. EMDR has been scientifically studied for many years now, and I have found it to be a effective tool in doing trauma work with certain clients. I am a certified EMDR clinician, which means that I have done extensive training and testing to meet the standards for certification.

EMDR is based on that theory that when a traumatic event happens there are times where the brain does not correctly process the thoughts and feelings associated with that point in time. Instead of the information being placed into long term memory (the memory bank where we remember distant past events), it stays in short-term memory and/or working memory and can be replayed in nightmares, flashbacks, and body responses when thinking of the event. The EMDR and eye movements help this information become processed as a "past" event and move into long term memory where the information should be located. I use EMDR with certain clients for both major traumas (car accident, rape, etc.) and minor traumas which are events that are still unprocessed and cause a current emotional or physical response when remembered (experiencing a feeling of shame or flushing in your body when you remember an embarrassing childhood moment). For more information on EMDR, please contact me or browse the attached links.

Experience and Qualifications

I earned my BA from Hillsdale College in 1999 with a double major in Psychology and Sociology and Social Sciences. I received a Masters of Science in Counseling Psychology in 2001 from Central Washington University. I am currently licensed in both Washington and Idaho. I have been working as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor for over ten years. Over this time, I have worked in a wide variety of settings including schools, emergency departments, outpatient public mental health, adolescent residential treatment centers, adult and pediatric inpatient psychiatric units, and in private practice.

Contact Information


OFFICE LOCATION: NW 115 State St, Suite 205 Pullman WA 99163

MAILING ADDRESS: PO Box 1145 Pullman WA 99163

PHONE NUMBER: 509-270-5460


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