Domestic violence is common in both heterosexual and same-sex couples. It affects individuals from all walks of life, no matter the person’s race, education and income, and leaves them emotionally, financially and mentally injured. It leaves people feeling alone, ashamed and isolated. I started my career in mental health as a victim advocate for survivors of interpersonal violence, and I have extensive experience treating both domestic violence survivors and abusive partners. Treatment includes assessment of risk, individual counseling around the dynamics of domestic violence, skills development for increasing physical and emotional safety, non-judgmental support for considering life options, and couples counseling when appropriate.
Survivors of sexual abuse and sexual assault often find their lives severely disrupted, with a deep sense of powerlessness and uncertainty, an impaired ability to trust others or share intimacy, overwhelming feelings of depression, panic or anxiety, and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. I emphasize providing compassionate, gentle support to male and female survivors of abuse and assault, and help them address the painful and debilitating thoughts, memories and feelings, so that they are able to regain a sense of control over their lives and wellbeing.