As a gamer-affirming therapist, I use video games and VR to help you feel at ease, build skills, & process your difficulties.
I also help gamers, parents, and families reduce gaming and screen use to a healthy level.
1) Meeting you where you’re most comfortable!
For gamers, video games and virtual reality (VR) can be a comfortable space to open and share their thoughts and feelings.
It can be difficult opening up in traditional talk therapy, so maybe using a video game or VR could help as a digital therapy space.
Through games, it’s easier to communicate your thoughts and feelings. The virtual world acts as a great equalizer and enhancer of creative expressions.
2) I also help those struggling to build healthier video game and online habits!
If you’re struggling with motivation, focus, and energy, it can be difficult living the authentic life you envision for yourself.
Therapy can be a great catalyst to help you jump levels, especially if you’ve tried to fix things on your own. You may need help reducing screen use to a healthy level so that you can improve your relationships, mental health, academic/career goals, and explore your passions.
Together, you’ll learn to break old patterns, find joy in your life, and build a better path forward!
My hope is that gamers who want to change and improve their lives can try therapy with someone who won’t judge their gaming habits.
Common Outcomes For Therapy
You’ll create sustainable goals that align with your values and needs.
Build the skills needed to navigate difficult situations and be authentic.
Learn to overcome avoidance, reduce worry, and find clarity in your life.
Manage self-critical and self-sabotaging thoughts and actions.
I provide superbills for reimbursement for Out-Of-Network services. If your insurance is non-HMO, such as PPO plans, you can get 50%-100% reimbursement from your insurance for services.
Private pay for treatment is accepted. Many people like this option to ensure they receive additions to their treatment, customization, and details that insurance might not provide.
Currently our fee for an online therapy session is $185.
The cost of Private Pay Programs varies depending on the level of care and the length of treatment; however, we can provide good quotes for you immediately following your initial Intake Interview/Assessment.
The rewards from gaming can come at the price of our relationships, finances, and career goals.
As gaming takes over, our “to-do” list grows, connection with others diminishes, & aspirations start withering away.
Avoidance of negative/difficult emotions such as shame, fear, anger, sadness, and hopelessness compound over time, leaving gamers in a deeper hole to crawl out of.
Therapy can help you overcome your struggles and teach you the tools to take your life back.
Childhood and adolescence can be turbulent stages to navigate through. Defining your identity, navigating difficult social pressures, and stressing over your school and career aspirations can be overwhelming.
When emotional issues such as stress, worry, sadness, sleeplessness, and unhealthy relationships take over, it’s hard to know what to do.
We can work together to develop tools to build your emotional regulation, resiliency, motivation, performance, and confidence
For those anxious about starting therapy, playing an activity like a video game or art activity can help them open up.
Video games in session have also been a creative medium for clients to better process their thoughts, feelings, and actions as they relate to things happening at the moment.
Learn more about integrating your clinical skills with evidence-based practices (EBP) to further facilitate the therapeutic process with your clients.
VR in therapy can offer a more immersive experience through multi-sensory approaches. With VR, there’s a feeling of “embodiment”, where you feel that what you’re seeing is what you’re truly experiencing. This means VR can be used to expose yourself to difficult things, in a controlled environment to build distress tolerance and emotional regulation.
Exposure or empathy therapy can help cope with trauma, anxiety, depression, OCD, body dysmorphia, and many others.
Your experiences can be tailored ahead of time and even in the moment. Your individual needs will be heard, so that you can have an experience that can be modified accordingly to generate effective long-term results.
During these isolating and stressful times, people have been struggling with the weight of their shame, fear, anger, and sadness. Constant ruminations and overthinking can drain us from feeling refreshed and motivated. Being at war with our thoughts can be an extra burden to carry, preventing us from being fully recharged.
Trying to suppress negative/difficult emotions can lead us to have heavy feelings of hopelessness and worry, leaving people in deeper holes to crawl out of.
Here at Video Game Counseling, you’ll be respected for who you are and welcomed into therapy. Meeting you where you’re at and providing gamer-affirming care is a core mission.
In therapy, you’ll have a space away from difficult and turbulent environments, to work through avoidance, anger, shame, and sadness. If you’ve struggled to make significant and lasting changes, I can help you implement effective strategies that can fit your specific needs.
You may see benefits in therapy that include improvements in your academic and career goals. You can also overcome your insecurities, build trust with yourself and others, and be the version of yourself you know you’re meant to be.
My goal is to help you overcome your struggles and teach you the tools to take your life back. We can address the issues that keep holding you back, such as feeling stuck, avoidance, overthinking, and low motivation.
You will be able to whittle away at your “to-do” list, increase your ability to connect with others, and improve your motivation.
We’ll work together to address how the past has affected you, overcoming past acts of self-sabotage, addiction, avoidance, and self-doubt.
You’ll learn how to be more open and aware of your patterns, learning to break them and replace them with positive alternative patterns. With each positive incremental step, you’ll build yourself into a new pattern of thoughts, emotions, and actions that can lead you to a better life.
If balancing video games in your life has made it hard to complete your work, make time for family, and reach your potential, I can help you develop healthier habits to bring balance there. Poor control over video game usage can compound over time, becoming a force out of one’s control, leading to low grades, low drive, withdrawal, and anger.
People use the term video game addiction to describe when a person isn’t moving towards their life goals, due to their video game habits. I have a hard time using the label “video game addiction”, since addiction brings stigma and can point the finger only at the video games, without looking at other psychological, biological, and social factors at play.
I want to look at the whole person, not just look at the surface to see what drives a person to play video games at the cost of other areas of their life. I want to see how a person got to that place, collaborate to hear their story, and developed strategies to help build a healthier and balanced life.
I’m here to listen non-judgmentally and with a supportive ear. Through counseling and therapy, you’ll overcome your struggles and build the tools you need to take your life back. You’re seeking therapy or counseling to build a healthier life, and I want to help make that happen for you.
As a gamer and a therapist, I strive to create a space for you to freely express yourself, build insight, and use those discoveries to make meaningful changes. Video game counseling can be a fun, engaging, and safe place for you to explore your emotions and learn new healthy coping skills along the way. Through our work together, we can build the life you’ve envisioned for yourself.
1. WIRED , “Online Gaming Is the New Therapist’s Office”
Click here for the link to the article.
WIRED magazine holds a special place in my heart, as I grew up diving deep in the tech and science articles as a kid A very joyous experience for me to have my work using video games with kids featured alongside many other great video game therapists.
The article did a great job showing research supporting the benefits of gaming in the therapy context, as well as capturing my own take on using a balanced approach between traditional therapy and video game therapy.
The Washington Post, ” My kids’ Roblox obsession drove me crazy-until I joined them.”
Click here for the link to the article.
In this article, I had the pleasure of talking about the benefits of therapists and parents using video games like Roblox to build better relationships with kids.
Since the COVID19 quarantine started in March, I struggled to connect with the kids and teens I help, leading to a lack of engagement, frustration, and cancellations. Once I started using video games in play therapy, there was a huge spike in my team’s ability to provide therapy to help kids emotionally process their difficult feelings in the age of telehealth.
Yahoo News, “”Can Video Game Help Kids Handle Their Anxiety?”
Click here for the article.
Kids are turning to video games to help with their anxiety: Why experts say gaming can be part of the solution to their mental health struggles.
El Estoque, “Game-changing therapy”
I was interviewed by Brian Xu, a Monta Vista High School senior and editor of El Estoque (their student newspaper) where I talked about how video games have helped my clients overcome their barriers in therapy. We also talked about how to help students gain control over their video game habits, to bring balance to their busy lives.
To read and listen to the interview, click here: interview 1
I provide mental health assessments for referral to hormonal and surgical treatments for gender dysphoria.
A mental health screening and/or assessment is needed for referral to hormonal and surgical treatments for gender dysphoria. In contrast, psychotherapy—although highly recommended—is not a requirement.
I’d still be more than happy to be your therapist for support through all phases of exploration of your gender identity, gender expression, and possible transition—not just prior to any possible medical interventions.
Therapy isn’t intended to alter your gender identity; rather, therapy can help to explore gender concerns and find ways to alleviate gender dysphoria, if present.
We understand the unique challenges faced by children and adolescents who struggle with video game addiction. Our child and adolescent counseling services are designed to help young people develop healthy coping skills and ways to manage their time.
Our individual video game counseling sessions are designed to help individuals understand the root causes of their excessive video game usage and develop a plan for healthier habits. Our therapists use a variety of therapeutic approaches to help individuals overcome their addiction.
We also offer video game counseling services for providers, including educators, mental health professionals, and medical providers. Our goal is to provide support and resources to help these individuals better understand and assist those struggling with video game addiction.
Our video game group therapy sessions provide a supportive and educational environment for individuals who struggle with video game addiction. Group therapy allows individuals to share their experiences and learn from each other in a safe and non-judgmental setting.
We are also one of the few counseling services that offer VR counseling. Our VR counseling sessions use virtual reality technology to provide a unique and immersive therapeutic experience. These sessions can help individuals develop healthy coping skills and ways to manage their time in a virtual environment.
Are you or someone you know struggling with video game addiction? Our team of experts at Video Game Counseling is here to help. We offer a supportive and understanding environment to help individuals overcome their addiction and achieve a healthy and balanced life.
Location: Santa Clara, California
Don’t let video game addiction control your life any longer. Reach out to us today and take the first step towards recovery. We are here to support you every step of the way.