Forest Trees



Navigating the Challenges of

Grief/Loss, Relationship Conflicts, Life Stages and Cultural Issues

If you are reading this, you probably have experienced pain and other challenging emotions for some time, within yourself and/or in your relationship with your partner or your family.  These emotional distresses are often reactions to changes, transitions or losses in your life that occurred suddenly, were intense, or accumulated for some time. 

My work focuses on three areas of personal and relational distress:

(1) Grief, loss and transition, including loss of a loved one, major illness, career transition, life stage transition (e.g., emerging adulthood, new family formation, becoming parents, retirement, end of life).  Since 2016, I have facilitated grief groups for spouse loss, suicide loss and teen grief and conducted crisis/loss debriefings for local communities as a volunteer for Kara, a Bay Area grief agency.

(2) Couples therapy and pre-marital counseling, which puts the relationship dynamics front and center while requiring skilled attunement to each partner.  These multiple challenges are often unfamiliar to therapists without training in this modality.  I have completed significant training at The Gottman Institute (Level I and Level II) (link) and at the Couples Institute (Menlo Park, CA), and I continue to prioritize professional development in this area.

(3) Culturally informed therapy addressing relationship or family conflict in Asian immigrant or bi-racial families.  Cultural issues challenge many minority or bi-racial families, not just new immigrants.  My experiences living and working in different cultures and places of the world has cultivated my capacity for compassion, empathy and curiosity.  I genuinely seek to understand each individual, couple and family from multiple lens including culture, family history, socioeconomic background, education, race and ethnicity, gender identity and assumptions, and phase of life.

In psychotherapy, we process and learn to cope with challenging feelings and relational conflicts.  We experiment, adapt, gain new perspectives, or heal - sometimes all of the above.  And we always grow.  Indeed, this process can be a transformational and meaning-creating journey in ways one never knew was possible.

Every story is unique and complicated, and every story needs to be told, heard, honored and sometimes, rewritten.  It is in this process that we accomplish the paradoxical yet inseparable pair: change and acceptance, the pair that defines personal growth.


Quote of the Month

- April 2021:

"My working definition of healing is coming to terms with things as they are." 

          - Jon Kabat-Zinn, in "Full Catastrophe Living"


(650) 701-3123

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