Frequently Asked Questions
What is your theoretical orientation?
I have comprehensive training in Complex/Developmental Trauma, Existential and Humanistic Approaches to treatment, and Motivational Interviewing (MI). I look from a systemic perspective not only because of my personality, but also as a result of my graduate school studies as a Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT). I use myself in therapy as a “here and now” experience with my clients.
Since you’re an MFT, do you only see couples and families? Do you see individuals?
Let's debunk a myth here that MFTs only see couples and families! Majority of my clients are individuals, whom I see as being part of systems (couple, family, community, culture, school, race, ethnicity,.. you name it, we're all part of many systems). We don't live in isolation, and everything makes sense within a context. Individuals and systems affect each other all the time, and as an MFT, my expertise is to be able to recognize patterns in these dynamics and part of our work is to increase your awareness of this so you can make more conscious choices.
What is your take on diversity issues? I’m a member of a minority group, and I don’t know if I can trust you.
I cannot ask you to trust me, since I know I need to earn your trust over time. My bicultural background broadens my insight and respect for different values and belief systems, any kind of diversity including gender, race, class, ethnicity, and sexual orientation, which in turn informs my strength-based approach to therapy.
I am not sure if therapy will stir lots of emotions for me. What if I start crying in sessions?
Well, being in therapy is not full of roses, rainbows, and butterflies. Maybe some roses, but with the thorns. All kinds of emotions are welcome (and encouraged) in sessions, including joy! I always look for ways of bringing humor into sessions, because laughter is a very powerful medicine for healing.
Which issues are you most experienced with?
Due to my experience and special interest in these areas, I am enthusiastic to work with people going through the following issues:
Family of origin issues
Acculturation, immigration, cultural differences in many aspects of life including parenting, lack of sense of belonging
Special issues with kids in (or have been in) foster care and adopted children
Growing up with "emotionally absent" parents
Complex/inter-generational trauma history
Changing career later in life
Women going back to the work after having kids
Becoming a first time parent
Growing up or raising children in an “achievement culture” in privileged communities
Finding your voice
Grief and loss
What is your background and education?
I have a counseling degree from California State University of East Bay (CSUEB) and I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT94911) with years of experience in working with children, adolescents, and adults through a variety of treatment modalities around a vast number of issues.
I am also the Program Director of the nonprofit organization called BAPTI (Bay Area Psychotherapy Institute) in Lafayette, which provides high quality and affordable mental health services to the community and training for clinicians working towards licensure. During our initial phone call or first face to face consultation, if you decide we are not a good match for each other for any reason, I would be happy to refer you to one of our skillful interns at BAPTI.
Last but not least, I provide training for other service providers who are working in community mental health agencies throughout Bay Area.
Well, it all sounds good, but I don’t know if I can connect with you. Who are you as a person outside of your work?
Thanks for asking! I’m very open with my clients, so please, do not hesitate to ask these kinds of questions. I am originally from Turkey, have two children, and also have an engineering degree. I am fluent in English and Turkish. I love reading, swimming, camping, traveling, hanging out with friends, going out for date nights with my husband, and cooking from scratch.
What is your fee? Do you accept any insurance plans?
The standard session fee is $150 for a 50-minute therapy session. Although I do not accept any insurance plans, I would be happy to provide you with “Superbill” that you may submit to your insurance company for partial reimbursement. Not all insurance plans cover “outside of network providers” though, so it’s always a good idea to check with your insurance company.
Also, please be advised that using your insurance requires diagnose, and then the diagnosis will become part of your health records.
I heard that some therapists offer “sliding scale”. Do you?
I do! However, there are only a limited number of slots I reserve for clients who need sliding scale to be able to afford therapy, and these slots are available only during school hours.
Looking forward to meeting you soon and working together!