SEPTEMBER LIAM VALENTINE
Clinical Social Work Intern Extraordinaire
Hello! My name is September Liam Valentine, my pronouns are she / her / hers, and I am a social work intern based out of Tacoma, Washington. I am currently pursuing my Master of Social Work from the University of Washington in Seattle and receive supervision from Licensed Social Worker Associate Independent Clinical #SC61038225 Sazi Wald, who in turn receives supervision from Dr. Stephen T. Wilson #LW00006074. I am working towards specialties in counseling LGBTQ, intersex, ace / aro, (and especially) polyamorous individuals and families. I am polyamory and kink affirming.
Over the years, I have seen and experienced the ups and downs of working with mental health professionals. Because of my deep and long-running commitments to social justice, I want to be the kind of therapist I wish my friends and I had had during our bleakest hours. For that reason, during my time in school, I have developed a voracious appetite for evidence-based practices and coherent theoretical frameworks that are client-centered and broadly affirming.
For theoretical frameworks, I am particularly drawn to Person-In-Environment, Critical Theories generally (Feminist Critical Theory, Critical Race Theory, Queer Theory), Relational-Cultural Theory, and Strengths-Based Perspective, among others. There is a special place in my heart for Hammack, Frost, & Hughes 2019 Queer Paradigm for Relationship Diversity. As for practices, I am drawn to Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, Narrative Therapy, Existential Therapy, and Person-Centered Therapy–I am still working towards certification for these and will update this bio accordingly.
For prospective clients, what this all means is that I will endeavor to see you as whole people with families, jobs, affiliations, beliefs, etc. rather than as a problem to be solved. I will work for and with you for your empowerment and for your consciousness-raising. I am much more interested in finding your strengths and how best to use them for your own healing and growth than I am on focusing on deficits.
To that end, my approach is reflective, insight oriented, and more directive than many therapists. I view successful therapy not only as an alliance but a creative collaboration between therapist and client. Because of that, I believe it is not only possible but imperative for therapists to transmute knowledge into empowerment together with our clients. So I believe strongly in share-outs where appropriate—I view a big part of my job as equipping you with the latest social science can offer you for the building of a better world for you and your loved ones. However, that is no substitute for an emotionally receptive place: there is always room in my office for humor, sorrow, frustration, joy—this is a place where all of you can fit for 50 minutes at a time.
I look forward to meeting you. Let’s get to work!