About Me – the Twitter version

Psychologist |Educator |Champion for all marginalized communities and the parents trying to raise their teens within them

Passionate about: parent work, teen mental health, identity development

Wants to Destroy: poverty, all the -isms, all the –phobias, the patriarchy, mental health stigma

Favorite buzz words: race, ethnicity, the mixed race experience, gender, LGBTQ+, privilege, intersectionality, equity, survivors, trauma-informed care, identity development

About Me – The Story

I remember being a teen. I remember what it was like to start to understand what was going on around me but not really understand how I felt about it. And I certainly didn’t know how to express all that I was feeling. My mother could see that I was processing lots of different things, but she struggled to give me the words or the space to express myself. We often get together now and reminisce on my adolescence and how tough it was for the both of us. She remembers how hard it was for her to help me process my feelings when she had her own set of stressful things that she was trying to sort through herself! We struggled to connect and she struggled to understand me. Today, she would say she struggled to understand me because she was struggling to understand herself.

Believe it or not, my mother and I had an argument once and the teenage me suggested to her (loudly) that we needed to go to therapy! I don’t think I had ever met a psychologist before, but somehow I knew that the way my mother and I were communicating was not working and we needed help! I still remember my mother’s face as she let that suggestion sink in. She hesitated and answered, “Yes, maybe we do.”

We did not actually go to therapy. I know now my mother probably felt shame and intimidation and was so worried about having done “something wrong” that she couldn’t bring herself to seek help from a psychologist.

Years later I can see how tough it must have been for my immigrant mom to understand what her American teenage daughter was going through. When my mom began to examine her own life, her own upbringing, and all the circumstances that impacted her parenting, she was able to better understand my experience and how she could have better reached me if she could see past her own blind spots. I now work with parents facing these same types of barriers and help them do the same examination my parent waited a little longer to do.

I take my passion and energy and I empower youth and families. I want to help adolescents, young adults and their parents recognize that they have the strength to progress, change and heal – despite the multilayered barriers they may face.

About Me – Nerding Out

I have a PhD in Clinical psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology. I have two specialty areas – children and adolescents/teens and multicultural community clinical psychology.

I have received some excellent training and experience over the years at places here in Southern California like St. John’s Child and Family Development Center, The Children’s Hospital’s Division of Adolescent Medicine, and The Children’s Collective. I am also a Graduate Clinical Fellow at The Reiss Davis Child Study Center. I have had over 15 years experience providing therapy to children and teens, and in depth experience with parents to help them better connect and communicate with their kids.

My second specialty area is in multicultural community clinical psychology. It is extremely important to me to take into account how culture influences the choices we make, the things we do and the way we see the world. I work with with a variety of cultural groups (race/ethnicity/sexual orientation/religion/income) and always work within the values of my client’s culture.

I seek to raise awareness about how mental health looks different in culturally diverse populations. I think it’s so important these differences be properly acknowledged and addressed. I strongly believe that sociopolitical and sociocultural factors impact one’s ability to achieve mental health, and that the larger societal structures and institutions which created marginalized and oppressed groups must be dismantled. I want to use psychology as activism for social justice.

I am an Assistant Professor at Pasadena City College in the Psychology Department. I teach courses such as Human Sexuality, Psychology of the African American and Developmental Psychology: The Child. I am involved in mentoring students of diverse backgrounds and involved in committees dedicated to creating equity on campus and ensuring the success of students from backgrounds of lesser privilege.

I serve on the board of MASC (Multiracial Americans of Southern California) – a nonprofit dedicated to advocacy of mixed race people, interracial couples, and transracial adoptees and their families. I’ve been a part of MASC for almost 20 years, initially as a mixed race member searching for another community. I involved myself in the leadership and am a former president and vice president. I co-designed and co-taught the first ever high school course on the mixed race experience.

I take my passion and energy to fight for social justice and merge it with my desire to empower youth and families. I want to help adolescents, young adults and their parents recognize that they have the moxie to achieve, progress, change and heal – despite the multilayered barriers they may face.

3679 Motor Ave. #301
Los Angeles, Ca 90008

(310) 210-8748

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