Back to Spring 2022 Newsletter
I had imagined writing my first president’s message announcing that life had returned to some sort of normal, not the pre-Covid life we were so used to, probably took for granted, and which seems now to be a figment of our memory, but one filled with in-person meetings, networking events, and live presentations at our favorite venues. Unfortunately, we are still in the midst of a turbulent time, a definitely more hybrid life where some of us are still hesitant to drop the mask where others are taking a leap of faith. I do hope we will see a clearing that will allow us to get together with as little worry as possible as soon as the month of May. We have a few programs lined up that we have worked hard to bring to you.
This quarter, the newsletter mirrors our spring luncheon and workshop programming as we cover the themes of motherhood, pregnancy, and parenting. In February, we hosted Dr. Ruchi Puri, MSc FACOG, who spoke to us about Be·ology, a new approach to pregnancy, a time in a woman’s life that she describes as “a sacred phase that is an initiation and rite of passage into parenthood”. You can read more about Embodied Pregnancy HERE and if you would like, you can also access the recording of her February luncheon HERE. Ana Morante, LMFT, CFLE will speak on Friday 25th about the “Safe, Secure and Loved Program built on important scientific research and theories (e.g., attachment, interpersonal neurobiology and polyvagal) and promotes a vision for community healing community”. I was particularly moved to hear that mothers who had attended the program take on the work of educating and supporting other women with children in the 0-3 age range. I hope you will enjoy reading the community focus featuring Kalpana Asok who speaks of her work with the South Indian community. She shares how she “wanted to publicize to the South Asian community ‘please, don’t send your children off to be raised by your parents for one year or two years’ because I was seeing firsthand how important that disruption of the attachment process was; they just viewed it as children, babies can easily be reared there by their own parents, not as a disruption”. Last but not least, if you are interested in getting a few tips about parenting, Geetha Narayanan’s piece will offer a reflection on how to best help teenagers through the lens of interpersonal neurobiology.
We have a new feature, along what we have been offering as of late: every quarter, Mark Mouro will write a column about his training at the Palo Alto Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program (PAPPTP). It is interesting to see how psychoanalysis has changed and has become more adaptable to the type of psychotherapy that many patients are looking for. Albeit longer than solution-focused, many of its tenets may be used beneficially to understand the patient and thus, the therapeutic relationship in a deeper manner.
I am leaving you with a view of the Louvre in Paris, where I am writing this from. I wish you all a happy Spring; may you all be safe and may you all be at ease. Please keep in touch, we love to hear from you.
Back to Spring 2022 Newsletter
back to winter 2021 newsletter
Before I reveal to you our vision for the chapter in 2022, I would like to do a quick review of what we have accomplished this year.
There were two priorities: fill out the open seats on the board and getting to know you, the membership. In the last 8 months, we have confirmed five directors and we are still looking to fill out a few more positions, the most pressing ones being treasurer and director-at-large. We have created opportunities to meet with you in person while following CDC and county Covid requirements: we met 4 Saturdays in summer and fall for Coffee Talks, which were quite lovely as we created friendly professional connections. We found out we have poets and writers in our community; some of you have published books, we learned about the diversity of your practices, your ideas, your involvement in various therapeutic activities, and your interests. Many of you offered suggestions for our chapter. These meetings were rich and allowed us to take the pulse of our community. We kept up with the Saturday online socials for those of you eager to network remotely; to these we added art-related activities, which were graciously provided by two of our members. We added one support group for experienced therapists and explored the idea of providing support for owners of group practices. In the background, we started to streamline our processes and brainstormed about what we intend to provide next year in terms of events, support. We continue to look for ways to to enhance our presence in the community, and develop our message and the position of our chapter in terms of diversity, equity, and inclusion. We have reached out outside of our membership to provide you with relevant and engaging online events and articles in the newsletter.
For 2022, we have five main objectives: continue to fill the open positions on the board, incentivize members to take on positions in various committees, increase our membership, offer a wide variety of luncheons, 3hr- and daylong workshops, and expand our outreach in terms of diversity, equity, and inclusion. To increase our membership, we envision creating connections with local universities, agencies, supervisors, and clinical directors. We will reach out to current CAMFT members who are not chapter members through various marketing events. Our aim is to connect with the new generation of therapists and provide them with a place where, outside of school or work environment, they can mix with peers and potentially mentors, create durable connections, and find various types of support. We intend to reach out to the community of therapists at large, currently non-members, and advertise our offerings and the state of our chapter. With time, we plan on providing more support in business development for budding and experienced therapists, for those who decide to make the move to solo or group practice for example.
In terms of programs, we are working on filling out the calendar with luncheons and workshops of various lengths. We aim at promoting the talents of our members: some of you have written books, have various artistic skills, and fascinating therapeutic approaches that others in our group would benefit from hearing about. One goal is for our chapter to become a resourceful place for our membership and offer those learning and growth opportunities right here: your membership dues at work! Any new Covid-restrictions aside, we are planning on resuming in-person programs while following CDC and county recommendations, starting at Michael’s in Mountain View for the first part of the year, and then at Los Gatos Lodge and other venues around the bay starting in the second half of the year. The majority of our programs will be hybrid (in-person and livestream) and recorded for those of you unable to make it the day of the presentation. We are working on adding longer programs on weekends, mostly Saturdays, for those of you wanting to meet in person but working on Fridays. We are brainstorming ideas about other ways to providing means to connect in various settings and other formats. We are looking at ways to incentivize active volunteer participation from the membership. We also welcome your suggestions and will continue to probe you via short surveys throughout the year.
In a nutshell, we are committed to creating more visibility for our diverse community, doing more outreach to various groups, and providing support to those whose voice remains unheard. As an already diverse board in terms of ethnicity, professional, socio-economic, and citizenship backgrounds, we aim at embracing and welcoming members regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender identities, gender expressions, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, disabilities, religion, regional background, citizenship, status, nationality, or any other diverse identities. In doing so, we hope to create a chapter that reflects the beautiful diversity of our region.
Overall, our vision is a dynamic, energetic, and strong chapter in our community offering meaningful ways to connect with colleagues from various horizons.
Greetings and Happy Holidays to you all.
This is my final column as chapter President. I want to thank you for your support over the past 4 years. I have enjoyed meeting and getting to know a lot of you, and for those I have not met, I look forward to meeting you in the future. I am also looking forward to an exciting year in 2022 with Dominique Yarritu as President and a new board. I know she will work hard and will bring her many skills and talents to the job! As I have worked with her over the past year, I am confident she will take the Santa Clara Valley chapter of CAMFT to new heights.
We have many exciting things planned for 2022. First off, we will be offering hybrid events next year starting with the January luncheon: there will be live-streaming options for those of you not able to come in-person and we will continue to offer recordings of all our events. We are returning to Michaels at Shoreline, where I understand they have done some remodeling during the pandemic. I am excited to see what changes they have made. The first luncheon will be held on Friday January 28th, titled The Athlete’s Mindset: How to help normalize mental health in the athletic community, presented by Megan Hankins-Maldonado.
Wishing you warm and relaxing holidays.
Back to Fall 2021 Newsletter
Greetings and Happy Fall! I hope you all were able to enjoy your summer, and get out and do something fun this year, safely of course. Whatever it was, I hope it was relaxing and reinvigorating. Personally, I was invited to go to Georgia and South Carolina for a few days and was shocked at the number of trees they have, they are everywhere. Of course they don’t have the amazing food and weather we have, so there is a trade off.
In this issue, we are talking about psychedelic-assisted therapy. Psychedelic-assisted therapy is becoming mainstream, more widely advertised in the media, and is generating a high level of interest. It involves using psychedelic medicines in combination with talk therapy and the guidance of an experienced and trained therapist. Research studies show promise that this combination of psychedelics and talk therapy can be especially effective for PTSD, depression and anxiety, and addiction. Research is ongoing to determine if it might be helpful in treating autism, smoking cessation and many other conditions. While this may seem outside of our comfort zone for many of us, introducing this leading edge approach to therapy seems timely. The Bay Area is a hot spot for this research, with the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) headquartered in Santa Cruz, and many other not-so-well-known clinics and organizations already providing these services. We wanted to give you a peak at this area in our current issue. Please read on.
The SCV-CAMFT board is continuing to add new members. In this issue, you will meet Genevieve Altwer, LMFT, who is joining as the Director of Membership/Outreach. We are excited about the energy and new ideas our latest board members are bringing to our organization. We hope you will get a chance to meet some of them in person soon.
Over the summer, members had the opportunity to meet in person at 3 coffee shop gatherings Coffee Talks, hosted by board members: one each in June, July and August. The location is different each month to provide members with easier access to this new activity. Members came together for a free cup of coffee or tea of their choice, talked about their practices, enjoyed connecting or reconnecting. People expressed how nice it was just to BE together. We have another in-person Coffee Talk scheduled for Saturday, September 25 at Sues Gallery Cafe in Saratoga (9-11am). Also, we are planning an in-person "Meet and Greet" opportunity specially for owners of group practices. The first meeting is scheduled on Sunday, October 3 at Blvd Coffee in San Jose, (10am-12pm).
We have a CEU luncheon scheduled online for October 8, from 12:00-1:30, on working with South Asian Women in Therapy. SCV-CAMFT member Moitreyee Chowdhury, LMFT, LPCC, will share about her own journey to becoming a therapist. The main focus of the presentation will be on providing culturally-informed services to South Asian immigrant women in the US—in particular, first generation immigrant South Asian women. You can register here. See our website to register for other scheduled events for this Fall, including Barbara Griswold, LMFT, on October 22 for What's missing from your documentation: Writing great progress notes.
We are also starting to get programming in place for next year and we have some exciting speakers. We’ll be happy to unveil these upcoming events as soon as we can.
Take good care of yourselves. We continue to be an important part of helping each other and our clients through these strange and difficult times. Your own self-care will enable you to do that.
Back to Fall 2021 Newsletter
Jacqui has been licensed since 2007. She joined the SCV-CAMFT board in 2015, initially as the Communication and Technology Director. She has a private practice in Palo Alto and San Mateo and is certified in TEAM-CBT level 2. She works with teens and adults and uses both a family systems model as well as a supportive, humanistic approach.
Greetings, all! As we move into summer, we hope you will have an opportunity to do some traveling or self care to decompress from the past 16 months of isolation. Personally, I am going to Tahoe later this month and very much looking forward to it.
The Governor has announced that on June 15 the mask mandate will be lifted with the exception of a few places including Healthcare settings. How does this impact our practices? Many of us are getting requests to return to our offices. Are you ready to go back to in-person sessions and are you comfortable seeing patients with masks? Personally, I am planning a hybrid practice going forward. I plan to begin seeing a few vaccinated clients in the office (without masks). I would eventually like to have 1-2 days a week in my physical office. But many of my clients are very happy with Telehealth, so I will continue to offer this option.
This past March we were pleased to have Tiffany McLain of www.heytiffany.com present on Working with Fees in a Clinical Situation. She was a dynamic and energetic presenter, whose content was pertinent to our work. If you missed her presentation and want to see it please contact Nancy Orr, our Chapter Coordinator, at email@example.com and she will send you the link. I joined her Lean In Make Bank community and I can vouch for the effect it has had on me personally. I am getting more comfortable talking about fees with clients. And I am also reaching out more to the nation-wide community of therapists who are in the Lean In Make Bank community. This community is my favorite part, you can talk to people and know they are going through the same things that you are. I have a specific goal of what I want my earnings to be this year (which is new for me). And the goal of the training is to increase your income by 30-50% in the first year. This is about knowing what we are worth, asking for what we need. There is no shame in asking to get paid for the work that we do.
Coming up this summer we have our next online social on June 19 hosted by Ursula Jorgensen. We are calling it Art Therapy Encore, because her first online social offering Art Therapy sold out! So this is your chance if you missed the first one. Space is limited so sign up early. On 17 July, Phyllis Klein, a certified poetry therapist will lead an experiential workshop, Writing for Healing, on the therapeutic use of poetry in groups. We hope to see you there as well! Space will be limited to afford as many participants the time to share their creation. Sign up early! We will also have a luncheon training on August 27 by Kathryn Ford on Couples Therapy.
You may have received a blast email letting you know that we are continuing our efforts to get to know you, members of our community, better. So, we are planning on meeting with those of you interested in a free cup of coffee or tea at your favorite cafe. Learn more HERE, stay tuned for dates, times, and locations around the Bay.
On September 17 we are pleased to announce the return of Dave Jensen for our Law and Ethics Workshop. At this point we are still unclear whether it will be in person or virtual: stay tuned for details as things open up.
I hope you stay well and healthy, and I look forward to seeing you all in person again. Hopefully in September at the Law and Ethics Workshop!
Happy Spring! As of this month, it’s been a year since the words Pandemic, COVID, Coronavirus and Social Distancing became part of our daily language. It seems odd to have a COVID anniversary, but here we are. I am so happy to see things returning to some kind of normal, like eating indoors, and recently I saw what looked like a youth soccer team practicing. Hopefully we are close to the finish line. I was able to get my first dose of the vaccine and am waiting for the second. I hope you all sign up as well, we qualify as heath care workers.
The Board of SCV-CAMFT has some exciting things planned for this year. On March 26th, bring your lunch and get comfy, while joining us for an online presentation by Tiffany McLain, founder of HeyTiffany, a website and blog dedicated to making life better for psychotherapists. In this training, we will explore the symbolic function of money for both the therapist and the client within the clinical setting. This event is free for members of SCV-CAMFT.
We continue to have online socials. Last month one member suggested we try something different like an Art Therapy-themed social. Stay tuned for more details as to when that will be. And please join us for this month’s social.
Back to the Winter 2020 Newsletter
Season’s Greetings to you from my freezing cold garage. As I write this we just finished celebrating Thanksgiving. I personally had a very small Thanksgiving this year of four people. Since we usually have 25-30 people for Thanksgiving, 2020 was very different. Who knew nine months ago that we would once again be back in the Purple Tier and again asked to sacrifice for the greater good.
As we continue to adapt to this ongoing new normal, I hope you all are finding constructive, healthy ways to take care of yourselves. I took a drive over the weekend to look at the autumn leaves and was grateful we live in a beautiful part of the country. I have started knitting again and remembered that I’m not very good at it, but as I continue I’m sure I will get better!
We at SCV-CAMFT have heard from many of you about giving up your offices to work from home and the changes in your business practices. I would encourage you to remember to keep in contact with other professionals in your circle. The isolation of this field can be draining. We will continue to offer the monthly Online Socials next year. We have gotten positive feedback from people who have attended, citing the intimacy of being able to break out into chat rooms and to get to know other members. We hope you will give it a try in the new year.
As always, the SCV-CAMFT Board of Directors would love to hear from you regarding suggestions or ideas for digital events for the coming year. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Happy Holidays and I will see you all in 2021!
Jacqui Gerritsen, LMFT
back to Fall 2020 Newsletter
Greetings, this time from my unbearably hot garage. As I write this, it is almost the end of August and we continue to be in a pandemic. The Bay Area is under an extreme heat advisory (causing my unbearably hot garage), which also caused a weird lightning storm, which then started fires all over the place and now we have smoke. We are all adjusting to what could be our new “normal” for quite some time. Here at SCV-CAMFT, we are working to adjust to this new world of doing everything remotely and online. We are discovering that, while we miss seeing each other in person, there are some upsides to gathering online. In May, we had our 2-day Marty Klein training. Being able to attend the webinar from the comfort of our own homes, and doing it over 2 days in 3-hour blocks, worked well. Breaking longer events up like this has really helped with my Zoom fatigue. And we were thrilled with the response from the SCV-CAMFT members who attended.
In July we began offering an Online Social for members. That first social, we met for an hour and a half on a Saturday via Zoom. Participants were able to introduce themselves in the larger group, then broke out into smaller groups so they could get to know each other a little better. I met
people whose names I know, but whose faces I had never seen before. It was nice to match the faces to the names! So far we have had 2 online social gatherings, with the next one scheduled for September 26, from 4:00-5:30 pm. See the website for details and registration.
We currently have two CEU opportunities scheduled for September. On September 11 and 12, we will offer a 6-hour CEU training called The New Science of Suicide Prevention, with Ben Caldwell, PsyD. Please see the website on the new requirement from the BBS and who needs to take this training. On September 25, we have a free 1.5 hour CEU presentation on doing Play Therapy via Telehealth presented by Paula Shuer, LMFT, RPT-S and Cecilia Long, LMFT, RPT-S. Also, please save the date for our Annual Membership Celebration (online) on Saturday morning November 7, from 10:00-11:30. This will be a chance to gather, connect and to recognize volunteers. And we have something fun planned as well! Details will be posted on our website as they become available.
I hope you are all finding ways to take care of yourselves in this difficult time. Those in the evacuation zones, please stay safe. And to end things with a chuckle, according to a meme a friend sent “Relationships are just a scam by big psychology to sell more therapy.” Happy Fall.
Dear SCV-CAMFT community, by the time you are reading this we will almost be in spring. It is a time in California when we see such beautiful growth and blooming of flowers and trees, in this gorgeous place we call home. And yet now as we are about to send out the latest newsletter, I am having to revise what I wrote a few weeks ago for my message to you. At that time, the coronavirus was still not so serious here, or at least we were less aware of the growing crisis coming our way.
Now, however, it is top of mind. Just today as I write this we have been informed that Santa Clara County and surrounding counties are implementing highly restrictive rules governing people’s ability to gather, to move about, and to live their normal lives. This is hitting everyone hard and some much more so than others, with economic, health, and child care challenges. We as therapists will provide important emotional support to many during this time of change and uncertainty. We need to remember to nourish and care well for ourselves even as we also provide emotional support and ballast to our communities and clients.
The board has had to make some changes to our upcoming programming because of the crisis, including having to cancel our CEU luncheons and day long that were scheduled between now and May 31. On March 27, we would have had Tom Tarshis, MD, MPH, speaking about “Evidence Based Psychotherapies” for our luncheon and CEUs. For the April 24th luncheon, Maureen Johnston, LMFT, was scheduled to present “Gender & Identity: Providing Gender Affirmative Therapy to All our Clients.” And on May 16, Marty Klein, LMFT was to have done a day-long training on “Couples Therapy 2020: When Old Problems Require New Solutions.” We know this is disappointing and SCV-CAMFT will keep you updated.
On a positive note, we hope that our fall law and ethics day-long workshop will still be able to go forward. Please SAVE THE DATE for September 12th, a Saturday, to gather with Ben Caldwell, PhD.
Additionally, the board has decided to offer only online meetings for our newly licensed and pre-licensed support group meetings for that time period as well. We hope this will make it possible for therapists to get the support they need, even while we are restricted from traveling. If this works well, we hope to continue to make online participation available even in groups that also have in-person participants in the future. Please check our website scv-camft.org to find out how to participate.
In our more normal news that I want to cover, we have the honor of welcoming another new board member to our SCV-CAMFT Board. Jyoti Nadhani is an associate who works with families and couples (you’ll meet her on page 2). Jyoti is already bringing her creativity and ideas to the board. She will be in charge of the law and ethics training that we will have in the fall. Her technological expertise is already helping the board think about connecting our members in new ways. Stay tuned for that.
In February, five board members attended the leadership conference put on by state-wide CAMFT in Burlingame. It was exciting and stimulating to hear ideas from other chapters and to network with each other. We who attended are bringing these ideas back and discussing them as a board. We were especially taken with discussions about how to engage members and how to create a sense of community. We are in the early stages of rolling out capabilities on our website that will connect members who share special interests. We will keep you informed and let you know when this is up and running.
We hope you enjoy this latest newsletter. Our editorial committee, comprised of Chair Dominique Yarritu and board member Rowena Dodson, is working hard to bring you relevant and interesting articles and information on a more regular basis. You will meet Dominique in this Newsletter (see page 5), where she tells you a little about herself. The theme for the articles is Teens. We have three articles about working with Teens: one on working with transgender teens, one on working with families and teens, and the other about accessing acute care for suicidal teens.
It was great to see many of you at the training by Dr. Elaine Brady on Sexting and Pornography on February 28th, “From Teen Sexting to Revenge Porn - We’re Mandated!” We had a packed room and lots to think about from Dr. Brady’s presentation.
I hope to connect with each of you in the coming months and look forward to hearing from you with your ideas and hopes for our chapter. And I wish for you, your families, and all our communities, health and safekeeping as we navigate this unprecedented health crisis.
Happy Holidays to you all!
As we come to the end of the year, it’s traditional to look back and see what we accomplished both personally and professionally. So, I’d like to review our chapter accomplishments. But first I’m sorry to say we are losing one of our board members at the end of this month. Elle Scott, LMFT is leaving us to start a new adventure. She is opening a group practice in Morgan Hill January of 2020. It will be called South Bay Therapy Center. It’s an exciting project helping an underserved area. We will miss her and wish her much success in her endeavor.
Next I’d like to welcome our two new board members, Rowena Dodson, LMFT as a director at large, and Mary Van Riper, LMFT as president elect. We are thrilled to have them on the board as they bring their ideas, energy and enthusiasm to our chapter.
This year we were able to offer something a little different for our law and ethics workshop. Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD presented on Tough Calls, Moral Dilemmas and Technology. I’m pleased to say it was our highest attendance to date for this type of workshop. We’ve had positive feedback from our members regarding Ben’s presentation style, so we have plans to bring him back in 2020.
Fortunately, we were also able to provide a day-long workshop in June by Roy Huggins, LPC, NCC, the founder of www.personcenteredtech.com, who spoke about our obligation to protect client health information. He provided concrete advice on staying HIPAA compliant in our increasingly tech driven world (#1 encrypt your computer!). He is also a practicing therapist whose mission is to help anxious therapists feel less anxious about technology.
For our 2019 speaker series we had five presentations. In January, Suma Singh, MD presented Update on Opioid Use Disorder, Overdose, and Treatment. Brandy Vanderheiden, LMFT, SEP, talked to us about Somatic Experiencing®: A Body-Mind Approach to Healing Trauma and Increasing Resiliency in February. In April we learned about Conjoint Therapy with High Conflict Couples from Steve Darrow, LCSW and Mary Crocker Cook, LMFT, LAADC, LPCC, CADCII. Treating Older Adults with Depression and Anxiety: A Compassionate and Effective Approach was presented by Edna Wallace, LMFT, LPCC, CGP in May. And in October, Marty Klein gave a presentation on How to Talk to Patients and Couples About Sex and Why They'll Thank You if You Do. In September we offered a North Region Networking Event: In Practice Together, sponsored by reflect. This took place in San Mateo, and the founder of reflect, Jonathan TranPham, gave a brief presentation on Insights on the Business of Private Practice. Free drinks and hors d'oeuvre were available.
We were thrilled to have our annual membership celebration last month. For the past two years, instead of the usual Friday night cocktail party and 1 CEU presentation we tried something different. The rationale being we can avoid Google traffic, avoid traffic in general, and change the time of day. We experimented and did a Saturday brunch. The result was wonderful! We had different people attend and overall a completely different energy. If we do a brunch again next year, I invite you all to attend and meet some new people.
In May we have Marty Klein presenting Couples Therapy: When Old Problems Require New Solutions. Marty is a long time member and supporter of SCV-CAMFT. His workshops are always well attended and feedback from attendees state that Marty is a thought provoking, practical and entertaining presenter. His workshop will be May 16, 2020. Location TBD.
Currently we don’t have confirmed dates for our other 2020 events. Those will be announced when they are confirmed. I want to thank all of you who have helped make our events and our chapter so successful this year! We can’t do it without our wonderful members! The board’s goal is always to make our chapter better and serve all our members to the best of our ability. We hope to offer a robust 2020 and to engage more of you, as we work to make our chapter even better.
If you have ideas about how to invigorate ourselves as an organization, we’d love to hear from you. We, all of us together, are what make SCV-CAMFT a vibrant, living organization that meets the needs of its members and facilitates our ability to do our best work for our clients. I invite you to become more involved in SCV-CAMFT this coming year. And we welcome your feedback and action to help us improve and grow together.
Happy Holidays to you and yours!
SCV-CAMFT P.O. Box 60814, Palo Alto, CA. 94306 email@example.com 408-721-2010