Dr Mariel is a registered psychologist with over 19 years’ experience working with individuals, couples, families, and elderly clients. She helps her clients develop therapeutic goals and works with them to achieve lasting change. Drawing on her own experience of life transitions, she brings a personal perspective to counselling, helping people from different cultural backgrounds.
Mariel’s friendly and practical approach creates a safe and comfortable environment in which to explore difficulties and realise positive change. She is exceptionally qualified in couples counselling, and in helping couples sort through the issues and dysfunctional patterns that prevent them enjoying their relationships. She believes that the nearly all troubled relationships can be assisted to regain the openness, joy and flow that are the hallmarks of health.
Mariel’s doctoral thesis was on migration and the psychological identities that this experience creates. She tutored in psychology at Swinburne University and counselled at the university’s Psychology Clinic. She was also a crisis counsellor at a suicide line. In her early career she worked in community settings, counselling families and individuals dealing with child protection and parenting, suicide risk, mental health and relationships issues. Later she supported those living with dementia, their families and carers, through counselling and educational activities targeting the general public and volunteers.
For the last decade Mariel has worked in private practice and for the last seven years she has specialised in couples counselling and family counselling. She has helped couples with relationship difficulties better manage the personal issues with children and family during marriage, separation, and divorce.
Mariel is fluent in Spanish.
Mariel’s areas of expertise
Mariel has experience and training in assisting clients with a broad spectrum of presenting concerns, including:
– Relationships – communication, infidelity, and relationship dissatisfaction
– Family breakdown, including divorce and related difficulties
– Parenting and family issues
– Support for families and carers affected by mental illness or physical illness
– Peri- and post-natal depression
– Grief and loss
– Anxiety, including social anxiety
– Generalised anxiety and perfectionism
– Obsessions and compulsions
– Post-traumatic stress
– Stress and burnout
– Difficulties of adjustment to life transitions
– Career challenges – return from parental leave, career change, redundancy
– Work/life balance
– Working with cultural diversity, cultural values and beliefs
Depending on her client’s needs and preferences Mariel uses a variety of evidence-based approaches including:
– Emotion-Focused Therapy for couples (EFT)
– Gottman Marital Therapy
– Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
– Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
– Interpersonal Psychotherapy
– Narrative therapy
– Schema Therapy
– Attachment-Focused Family Therapy