Why Trauma?

My clinical specialty is treating trauma in Black people. It’s all I’ve known for my 13-year career as a therapist.

In grad school, I was on the Child and Adolescent Health and Mental Health track at UNC Chapel Hill’s School of Social Work in 2008. For my practicum experience, I worked on Wake County’s Sexual Abuse Treatment Program for one year. The outpatient unit treated both offenders and victims of sexual abuse. It was the only team of its kind in the entire state. It was here that I began my training in the Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy treatment model. I worked closely with some of the most experienced trauma therapists in our country and because the program was state funded- meaning contextually that these services were rendered to families with healthcare plans provided by state funds and housed within the state capital’s Human Services building. As reflected largely in all of our systems in this country, that intersect with the marginalized, nearly all of my clients were Black and Brown families.

After grad school, I began my work as a community-based therapist providing crisis, in-home services. My clients were children and families whose clinical needs superseded "traditional" outpatient therapy but needed to be in the home, at least 3 times a week, for 2 hours each contact day with a plan for the team to respond to crises 24/7, 365. In this role, my understanding of trauma and its effects-especially for Black people in Black communities was stretched, it was primed, and it grew. Fueled by what was at times frustration with the condition of our policies and systems designed to aid but that also perpetuated the cycles of trauma and inadequate services for the people who looked like me; I grew passionate about understanding trauma so that I could help us understand trauma. And also the unique, nuanced ways we as Black people are impacted by trauma. And how to heal from it.  I continued training in TFCBT, and was baptized by fire in Motivational Interviewing, Family Strategic/Structured Therapy, and Somatic Interventions as a community-based therapist for the next 6 years.

In 2014, I started working for myself and ventured into private practice. The idea of private practice has always been my goal. I witnessed my mom and dad work in corporate and then switch over to entrepreneurship and I KNEW I had no desire to work for someone else solely. Within a year, I grew to a group practice, and today work alongside an amazing team at The Reese Collective. At TRC we are dedicated to healing in our community with our mission to shift the culture of mental health services accessed by our community by promoting quality therapeutic and consultative services. Today I incorporate my years of experience and training in trauma with Black people into practice. I bring my training in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), with my understanding and studying of Faith and Spirituality’s impact on the brain (Neurotheology), and experience with Somatic Interventions to help my client navigate their healing.

I’m also a Certified Enneagram Coach so I use the tool in practice with clients with the unique lens of Black people and the Black experience. Reflective of the many spaces we occupy this specific application is rare considering how white the enneagram space is...

 

...but we’re working on that.