More information than you may require.
Hi, I’m Darin.
According to my license I’m a psychologist, but you can call me a therapist, helper, shrink or just “doc.”
The people I work with may think of my work as a “life recovery specialist” because I love helping people rebuild their lives out of the ashes of a life that burned down around them.
I love to help people who are struggling
I help people who really want a life full of joy and purpose but have gotten lost because of painful life events. I help people make peace with the past and move forward into amazing lives.
Sometimes people come to therapy struggling with a traumatic pastthat won’t leave them alone. They feel like they can’t connect with people or find a moment of peace and relaxation.
Other times people have been falling deeper and deeper into sadness, guilt and despair. Along the way they’ve lost touch with the things that make life joyful. Small tasks seem overwhelming and they just don’t have the energy to keep fighting.
Another group of people I specialize in helping are those attempting to make sense of life after divorce. Divorce can be an overwhelming time of questioning yourself and re-evaluating life. It is painful and it’s easy to be afraid that life will never be easy again.
I help people who may not think they can be helped
I know from personal experience, and from helping hundreds of clients that you are so much more than your past, and you are capable of so much more than your mind is telling you right now.
I believe in the immortal words of Frank Turner that “it doesn’t matter where you come from, it matters where you go.”
You may wonder what’s unique about me
Finding a therapist is hard – there are so many of us, and we say such similar things on our websites. Hopefully you have an idea of who I am and what I’m about, but if not here are a few qualities I bring to therapy:
This should be obvious, but too often we are afraid to share what we are thinking and feeling for fear of judgment and shame. I get it, I’m afraid of that too. So my top priority is to be compassionate when interacting with everyone, not just my clients. Judgment has no place in therapy.
Life is hard and it is a struggle to make it through some days. I am serious about being a therapist, but I don’t take myself too seriously. Sometimes the best thing is to share a laugh – I always have a dad-joke in the back of my mind, though I do usually spare my clients from having to hear them.
Being vulnerable and addressing weaknesses takes courage. Compared with the courage of being a client, therapists can take it easy. The easy route would be to nod and listen and smile and take your money without challenging or helping at all. It would also be easy to keep the conversation away from intense and scary topics. That’s not me. I will give needed feedback even when I’m scared to do so, and I will go wherever we need to go – even if it is a scary and intense place. It’s the least I can do as a therapist.
I am who I am, in my personal life and as a therapist. Some people fear that therapists are constantly analyzing them and hiding their true reactions. This makes us really unpopular at parties. Thankfully that’s not how I practice. I am happy to share what I’m thinking and what I think the therapy process will involve. I also will tell you if I don’t think I’m the best fit and give you other options for people who will be better suited for your needs.
I believe flexibility is one of the most important qualities for living a meaningful life – and no, I’m not talking about touching my toes. I mean the flexibility to adjust to new situations and change plans as the situation changes. If the therapy process is like following a path to the top of a mountain, sometimes you find that the path is blocked and you need to find a way around. Sometimes as we’re working on an issue, a new situation or struggle will show up and we need to incorporate that into our treatment.
I believe that compassion, a desire to improve and some humor will change the world. That’s why I hope you contact me to schedule an appointment today.
- OR licensed psychologist (#1857)
- Doctorate from George Fox University
- Masters from George Fox University
- Primary Care Psychologist at VA Portland Healthcare System
- Assistant Professor at OHSU
- Geriatric Psychologist at Geromedical Psychological Services
- Emotion-Focused Therapy Level 1
- Postdoctoral Fellowship in Palliative Care/Geriatrics at VA Portland Healthcare System
- Predoctoral Internship at VA Salt Lake City Healthcare System
EVIDENCE BASED THERAPIES
- Emotion-Focused Therapy
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
- Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)