Gabriela , LCSW is a licensed therapist in Virginia and NYC providing culturally competent psychotherapy to children, adolescents, adults and couples. Gabriela has extensive training and experience in trauma, depression, anxiety, autism spectrum disorder, learning disabilities, bullying, couples and relationships counseling, unhealthy relationships, substance abuse, grief, intercultural issues, problematic family dynamics, and others.)
Finding the best therapist in Virginia or NYC does not have to be a daunting process. A therapist should have the experience treating the type of psychological conditions you are facing, be compatible with your own personality and needs, and be licensed in New York or VA. Your best therapist match should have the right combination of temperament, education, training and experience.
Gabriela has a special interest and experience working with couples, trauma & addictions and children & adolescents. She also works with individuals on a range of personal issues including trauma, depression, anxiety, addiction as well as most other issues they may face.
Gabriela has helped individuals and couples resolve relationship issues for over 25 years. I provide services to couples in Virginia and New York who are married, who are going to get married, and anyone in a relationship who needs help.
The goal of my her is to enhance and expand my client’s ability to experience a deeper connection with themselves, their partners and others. That connection is the key to physical and mental health and feeling alive.
Partners come into couples or marriage counseling with a variety of issues to address including communication & conflict resolution, sexual & intimacy issues, fighting and anger problems, identity and role conflict, dependence vs. independence, jealousy, parenting, infidelity, money and finance challenges, addiction, family and in-law struggles, step family issues, gender roles, infertility / adoption, and much more. Whatever you and your partner are grappling with, there is a very good chance that couples counseling can help improve your current situation.
Who can benefit from couples counseling?
Any couple looking to improve any aspect of their relationship can benefit from couples counseling. She works with a huge variety of couples at all stages in their lives and relationships including:
- Dating Couples
- Engaged Couples and couples wishing to utilize my pre-marital counseling program
- Married couples AND couples in long-term relationships not defined by marriage
- Second marriages and blended families
- Same sex relationships
- Mixed-race/ ethnicity marriages and relationships
- Open and other non-traditional relationships
- Relationships with a large disparity in age
- Long distance relationships
- Transgender or gender-nonconforming members of a relationship
- Couples who are considering breaking up or divorcing and would like to work towards conscious uncoupling
- Co-parents who are separated or divorced and want to develop a better relationship
Children, Adolescents and Families:
Throughout her vast experience at New York University and Fairfax County Public Schools, she has worked with individuals of all ages and is particularly passionate about working with children, adolescents and families. Her experience includes providing therapy to those affected by trauma, attachment disruption, parent/child relationship struggles, depression, grief/loss, anxiety, social skills deficits, mental health and academic issues, and struggling with emotional regulation and relationships. She utilizes a variety of approaches to meet the specific needs of the individuals and families with whom she works.
Childhood, adolescence are very important developmental stages for healthy and adjusted future adults. Because young people are still very dependent in care givers and other people in their lives, it is important to have all the support and secure attachment environment we can provide. Parents, children and teens are going through harder times than usual with divorces sky rocketing, online learning and working 40 or more hours a week. Therefore, the more opportunity for traumas of any kind. It is important to understand that children, who are suffering from mental health issues or psychological distress, may not share these concerns with their parents. That doesn’t happen because your child doesn’t love you; rather, it occurs because he/she fears disappointing you.
Many of the issues these children face mimic the issues adults face in their day-to-day lives. Some of these common issues include anxiety, depression, and grief. The goal of child counseling, however, is to break down problems into manageable parts, so children can better understand and cope with them.
Gabriela will work with you and your family to identify the underlying issues that are affecting your child’s overall health and well-being, so he/she can quickly receive the treatment he/she needs to feel better. The truth is many children are unable to fully process the complexities that accompany the emotional and/or psychological issues they are experiencing, so counseling may be just what your child needs to work towards mental wholeness.
Substance Abuse and Addictions:
Gabriela has extensive experience working with the underlying trauma of many addictive behaviors. Trauma and symptoms of trauma are found frequently to be one of the co-occurring disorders with the highest prevalence rates for patients of substance use treatment (Atkins, 2014; SAMSHA, 2014b; Development Service Group, 2015). More specifically, it is estimated that individuals with a diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) engage in treatment for Substance Use Disorders (SUD) at a rate of five times higher than the general population (Atkins, 2014).
When we talk of trauma and substance abuse, Gabriela has experience working with many of the items defined by a substance such as the typical alcohol and drugs, but also food, video games, exercise, workaholism and anything that takes the person away from being fully present and engage in relationship and with the world in a meaningful way.
In order to work in a trauma-informed way with clients, Gabriela engages the knowledge and treatment of the nervous system and polyvagal theory from a neurobiological and relational way.
Gabriela bases her work on Attachment Therapy, Gottman and Emotionally Focused in her therapy with couples. She also combines the approaches of Trauma Focused-CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing and solution focused therapy, among other techniques. She focuses on the individual and the environment due to her experience of family systems. Continuing learning and bringing her knowledge and expertise to supervisees and the bigger community, are her passion and long-term hobbies.
She enjoys working with individuals of all ages, backgrounds, abilities, and is LGBTQIA+ friendly. She is dedicated to providing a safe and healing environment to work through life’s challenges. She strongly believes that every individual has immense amounts of strength and resilience within them and often need another human being for help healing and uncovering their potential.
Gabriela is out of network with insurance. She will guide you and provide you with necessary information to submit to your insurance for reimbursement.
Gabriela sees clients in person in Falls Church on Mondays & Wednesdays and in Reston/Herndon on Tuesdays. She also offers teletherapy/online sessions.