Emily’s pronouns (She/Her)
I see therapy as a tool for uncovering the ways that pain, whether personal, relational, or systemic in nature, shape patterns of thinking, acting, and relating that may no longer serve us. I take a person-centered, trauma-informed approach to therapy, noting that an individual’s well-being is profoundly shaped by systemic oppression as well as past and ongoing trauma. I draw on methods from CBT, DBT, and psychodynamic and narrative therapies while working to co-create a healing, supportive relationship with each client.
As the recipient of years of individual and group therapy myself, I see therapy as an opportunity to practice new ways of being and relating, keeping in mind the wisdom of psychiatrist and decolonial scholar Frantz Fanon: “In the World through which I travel, I am endlessly creating myself.” My work as a therapist is deeply grounded in my lived experiences as a child of a Chinese immigrant family; I understand that mental wellness is often tied up with Western individualism, favoring healing in isolation while overlooking the healing that can occur in relationship with others. I believe that therapy should be about cultivating our ability to be with others just as much as it is about fostering agency and independence.
In my clinical work thus far, I have provided individual counseling to men of color in the NYC shelter system who carried diagnoses of schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and substance use disorder; extensive trauma histories; and involvement with the criminal justice system. I understand that conversations around mental health often put the onus on the individual to adapt to a maladaptive society and I aim to empower others to choose their own ways of engaging in our imperfect, shared world.
I earned an M.A. and M.Ed. in Psychological Counseling from Teachers College at Columbia University. I also hold an Advanced Certificate in Sexuality, Women, and Gender with a specialization in LGBTQ+ issues in counseling. I earned a dual B.A. in Ethnic Studies and Psychology at the University of California – San Diego.
Specialties: Complex Trauma/PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Loss/Grief, Immigrant Families, Racial Trauma, Asian American Identity, LGBTQ+ Experiences, Gender/Sexuality, Racial Trauma, Relationship Issues, Hearing Voices/Seeing Visions