My name is Kathryn but most people call me Katie. Feel free to use either.
I find this page difficult to write. I imagine like many of us, we find having to put ourselves into boxes and words confining. Though, I understand that as your potential therapist you want to know who I am and that I’m a real human being who you can connect with. I’ll do my best to give you an idea of what I’m like.
Most people describe me as approachable and intelligent. I’m a geek! I geek out about human sexuality and psychology. A friend recently told me that if they ever made a talking action figure of me my catch phrase would be, “there’s research on that.” I think we are so often told that there is something wrong with us that we must fix. Whether it be with our sexuality and how sex is “supposed to” go or with how we think or feel. I think having facts and research behind my words offers hope. Hope that you’re not broken. Hope that you can reach out to others and they will understand.
I grew up in a family with a legacy of domestic violence, intimate partner violence, and sexual assault. Both my parents came from that experience, and came together to form a predictable pattern. I’ve spent my life seeing the effects of this devastating legacy. A good chunk of my childhood was grieving with family members who were trying to make sense of the wreckage that these power and control dynamics can create. When I was 16 I took my first psychology class and fell in love with it. When I was working towards my Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology I began volunteering at my first domestic violence shelter. I love helping people. I love helping them heal from trauma. I always knew my days were not wasted when I spent time helping others.
From there I moved to a new state, and with it a new domestic violence shelter. I got my Bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington in Seattle. AT UW I got to start researching my other specialty – human sexuality. I worked on research related to the spread of HIV/AIDS and learning theory. I worked under a researcher who supported me in learning about consensual non-monogamy and mental health.
After I got my Bachelors I moved to Austin, Texas, where I began volunteering at Safe Place. Soon after I was hired as a relief advocate. I worked as a crisis intervention provider, resident adviser, and sexual assault survivor advocate, to name a few of my positions. With each shelter I worked and volunteered at I learned more. I saw the intersection of power and control on issues relating to sex and sexuality. Some of the questions I got asked were:
- If I got raped does that mean I’m not a virgin (quick answer: No, that’s not what that means).
- After being in an abusive relationship I now find myself more attracted to the same sex. What does that mean?
- I agreed to make out with the him, but then we ended up having sex. Did I consent to it because I invited him up to make out?
- Can a woman be the batterer in a relationship?
In May of 2017 I graduated with my Masters in Counseling from Texas State and soon began to work on my professional counseling license. Since then I’ve been working in private practices and building my skills. I love going to trainings and am constantly looking for new things to learn.
At the end of 2017 I got trained in EMDR and now use it as one of my primary frameworks to help people heal from trauma. I specialize in complex trauma and sexuality and use a gentle approach so as not to overwhelm the nervous system when revisiting past traumatic experiences. Other theoretical frameworks I use include PACT, attachment, and parts work.
I live in Austin with my husband and my two cats. I do Crossfit, yoga, swimming, hiking, and biking whenever I get a chance.