More information about me & my practice
I was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA. I moved to Florida to attend college as an English major, but I changed my mind and went into nursing, instead. I spent a lot of time living in both places after I graduated. I planned to have an ordinary life; marriage, house, baby, hospital job…but “the best made plans…” I certainly took a few big detours along the way.
Nurses are educated to assess physical, psychological, spiritual beliefs, and social needs. They may also teach patients, families, communities, and other professionals. Psychologists, social workers, life coaches, counselors, etc. are educated and trained much differently than nursing professionals. They do not have the background in pathophysiology, so they are not qualified to monitor changes in physical health, sleep, nutrition, in the same systematic and holistic manner that nurses are. My education and experience have given me the ability to assess if medication may be beneficial. I monitor responses and side effects of prescribed medication.
What did your first contact or session with me feel like? Were you comfortable? Did you feel accepted and understood; like I had “gotten you” and could help? Did your initial anxiety go up or down, as we talked? Did I participate too much in your session, or not enough? Do I seem like someone you could trust, a caring person you will be able to talk openly with and share intimate details of your life? Were you and your concerns treated with dignity and respect?
Remote (or online) teletherapy has been around for less time than in person therapy. So far, the research has not been able to discern too much of a difference that one is preferable more efficacious than the other. I do know, that with teletherapy, many people who could not access or participate in therapy before, are now able to do so. I’m thinking of folks who live in rural areas without therapists or child care, agoraphobics, new moms, those lacking transportation, or have limited physical or sensory capabilities. Some people are initially anxious to talk to an online therapist, but find those feelings dissipate rather quickly, and do not notice the difference.
For me, I’m not sure there is any such thing as my “ideal patient.” If a person seeks me out as their therapist, I imagine there is something or some things about me and/or my approach that resonates with them. So, if that initial “connection” is mutual AND hopeful, and there is enough for both of us to want to work and learn together as a team, that’s pretty close to ideal for me.
Extremes, like a non-stop elevator ride? A roller coaster of emotions? 🙂 Highs and lows? Anxiety or relief? A soft landing place? A rude awakening? Closeness or distance? Feeling understood or like an alien trying to explain life on Mars? Intensity? Superficial small talk? Navel-gazing? Permanent, lasting change for the better? I’ve been a patient and therapist, on “both sides of the fence.” I’ve had my own psychotherapy with different therapists over the years. It would be fair to say that I’ve experienced ALL of the above thoughts and feelings at one time or another…and I will expect you will, too.
I graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1983 as a psychiatric clinical nurse specialist and APRN psychotherapist. Nurse practitioner programs were just starting to take off at that time, so that practice track was not an option. Plain and simple, I never was taught anything about prescribing medication. I’ve considered going back to school to learn and become a PMHNP. Truth be told, I love being a psychotherapist (only) and don’t miss the responsibility and liability that comes with being a prescriber.
However, of course, there is a place and (often) a need for the use of medication in psychiatry. I am totally supportive of this.
I can refer you to licensed, quality prescribers in every state I practice. If you are already working with one, it would be my pleasure to collaborate with that professional, to ensure you receive consistent care.
I am an eclectic therapist. This means that I use my experience and evidence based techniques that I have learned in my last 40 years of practice. In other words, I am not “wedded” to one particular theory, technique, or style. Of course, technical proficiency and skills are important requirements. But I believe, at the heart of my profession, psychiatric nursing, is the work that occurs in the context of the developing, trusting, and safe relationship between us – you, my patient, and me, your therapist.
At our first session, we will develop and agree on a crisis plan for you and I to implement, in the event it is needed.
There are several (secure) ways to pay electronically for my services. Visa, Mastercard, credit, and debit cards are accepted, as well as Venmo, PayPal and IvyPay.
I am in network with BCBS, CareFirst, Florida Blue PPO, Highmark, Oscar, Oxford, Optum, Cigna, United, and Tricare. I also accept Idaho and Maryland Medicaid. If you are insured with one of these providers, I will submit claims directly for you.
If you are out of network, I request payment and will provide you with a SuperBill to submit to your insurance company for payment.
Private pay is also welcome.