I am clinical psychologist and psychotherapist. I gained my undergraduate, clinical and research doctorates from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, UK.
During my clinical training in Canada and in Scotland and in my first post in the National Health Service in Scotland I worked mostly with people affected by complex mental health problems such as eating disorders, chronic depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, PTSD, psychosis or personality issues. I enjoyed working within interdisciplinary teams to try to support the people – often young adults – and their families using individual, group and family therapy. When I moved to Germany I worked as a psychotherapist at a psychosomatic hospital. I provided individual and group psychotherapy to people who struggled with a variety of mental health problems and who often found themselves in an existential crisis. Most of my clients were helping professionals like myself. I then started providing outpatient psychotherapy in Munich in a shared office with colleagues.
Over the years, I have come to integrate everything I have learnt and am still learning in how I approach life and psychotherapy. My sources are trainings, research findings, books, supervisors, colleagues, spiritual teachers and most importantly the lessons that life has taught me and the wisdom and courage of the people I have had the privilege to support.
Psychotherapy can often seem a little mysterious. I am trained in a variety of evidence-based methods that I tailor to the person’s resources and problems. My intentions are that I meet the person where they are at, as a transparent and real fellow human being. By attuning to myself, I try to attune to the person in front of me, and I try again, when I fail. By connecting with my own body and emotions, I invite the person to gradually connect with their sensations, emotions and thoughts with increasing courage, compassion and clarity. By trusting that we all have wise minds, I invite the person to find access to their inner wisdom and compassion. With good will and patience, I hold the space within which the person can explore their inner world of protective and vulnerable parts from their wise and compassionate self. With confidence, I encourage and coach the person to make the changes they want to make. On every step of the therapeutic journey, I rely on compassion towards everything that shows up, within me, within the person I support, within the relationship. Wise compassion acts like a medicine that over time has the potential to heal hurts, to make the unbearable more bearable and to provide insights. By integrating and embracing what was exiled, wise compassion can bring us more peace and strength.
Internal Family Systems Therapy best summarizes my current way of doing psychotherapy. I am not offering psychotherapy until further notice as I moved to the Netherlands in 2019 and do not yet meet the Dutch language requirements to practice within the Dutch health service.
In my workshops for clinicians I teach how to deal with challenging moments of shame, exhaustion, irritation and powerlessness in therapy and how to find safe access to compassion by navigating the obstacles within an injured or traumatized attachment system, such as in Borderline Personality Disorder.