Services

BIPOLAR

I help people to manage the anger and irritability that often accompany Bipolar disorders. I assist people diagnosed as Bipolar not to catastrophize their diagnosis and to realize that they can live normal, healthy lives if they follow treatment recommendations. If someone is presenting as manic or hypomanic, I will (with my client’s permission) collaborate with their psychiatric provider to see if their medication may require adjusting.

CHRONIC ILLNESS / PAIN

In treating people with chronic pain or illness, I validate the difficulties of living with chronic pain/Illness. I help people come to an acceptance of their situation and assist them to find ways to bring joy to their life as much as possible, eg. by paying attention to the small pleasures/victories. I encourage as much social and physical activity as possible.

Couples

My work with couples uses unconventional but also common sense approaches that can help people who would normally be resistant to couple’s therapy feel more comfortable. My focus is on helping the couple identify what is going right with their relationship. My homework for couples is typically something like this: between now and the next session, notice 2 things that your partner did that you really appreciated; notice one thing that occurred that you wish had gone differently. When couples learn to shift their focus to what is going right with their relationship, the homework evolves into doing more of what your partner has appreciated. Additionally, I almost always teach couples communication strategies that are non-threatening and that help them to work better together. Finally, I like to explore with couples how what they may have learned growing up in their original families is impacting their current relationship. We often repeat negative learned behaviors with our significant other, and we often choose significant others who remind us of one or both of our parents.

Depression

I encourage focus on the things that go right with ones day, shifting the focus to positive thinking.  I assist people to identify healthy activities that are pleasurable for them and encourage them to do more of these.  I encourage more social interaction and physical activity.

Stress / Anxiety

This is best said by one of my clients: “Cate has introduced me to multiple breathing and mindfulness exercises, which has helped me stay present and has calmed my mind…I have learned to appreciate things more, reduced self-induced stress and worry less.”

LGBTQ+

I provide specialized services to the LGBTQ+ community.  I am an out cis lesbian and finally got married to my partner of 26 years five years ago. This was both for romantic reasons and to protect my rights.  I am quite familiar with the struggles inherent in being queer in an often invalidating world.  I should note that the vast majority of my clients are straight and supportive, however, I would welcome more clients like me.

In addition to meeting the emotional needs of my own community, I strongly support the rights of the transgender, genderqueer, and gender nonconforming communities.  I have supported and assisted members of these communities by helping them to accept and to celebrate themselves and by supporting their transition to the gender identity that feels right for them. I have supported my clients when faced with transphobia and the daily microaggressions that occur when people use the wrong pronouns.  I have met with family members of genderqueer clients, and also with my clients and their family members together, to help the family members be more supportive of their genderqueer family.