We have several therapists and trainees to serve you from all different backgrounds and experience levels.
Registered Associate MFT (AMF95664)
Supervised by: Dr. Lisa Palmer-Olsen, LMFT #37577
Languages Spoken: English
I earned a B.A. in Psychology from Humboldt State University and an M.A. from Alliant International University. I am a registered MFT Intern pursuing a doctorate in Psychology from Alliant International University. As a former US Marine, I came to be a therapist as a second career. My time in the armed forces informed my desire to become a therapist. I frequently saw mental health issues stigmatized and subsequently get worse due to a lack of access to mental health. I also saw the value of a strong support system and the Marines who had this benefit dealt with adversity in a much better way, which is why I have chosen to specialize in relationships. Alliant couple and family clinic is the perfect place for me to provide therapy to a diverse community that includes veterans and active service members and their families. I choose to work at the Alliant clinic because of the expert supervision in emotionally focused therapy. Emotionally focused couples therapy is a research backed model that has shown that 90% of couples report significant improvement in their relationships. I view relationships as fundamental to our health, happiness and survival. As a former marine and current therapist, I have the necessary skill set to lead and follow a client’s experience in an empathic and humanistic manner. It is my honor to continue to serve in a capacity that helps clients achieve their desired change.
Associate Marriage and Family Therapist #109658
Supervised by Dr. Lisa Palmer-Olsen, LMFT #37577
I earned my Master’s degree in Marital and Family Therapy and am pursuing my doctorate in Marital and Family Therapy from Alliant International University. My interest in the field began after my own transformative experience in therapy where I learned how important it can be to have a helpful hand as you embark on a journey toward healing from past, present, and/or future struggles. Over the years, working with various mental health organizations inspired me to pursue a career helping others navigate life’s challenges.
Clinically, I take a client-centered approach and primarily work within the framework of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) with clients. I have witnessed both of these approaches successfully and continually transform lives, relationships, and families. I believe my role as a therapist is to provide a safe and secure space for clients to explore, discover, express, and evolve along their unique path of healing.
Exposure to traumatic incidents can often leave people in a perpetual state of distress, fear, and at times complete overwhelm. This can result in difficulties coping, connecting, and functioning as our mind and body try to recover. I work with trauma survivors by coming alongside them, helping them move beyond their painful experiences, heal, and thrive.
I believe that safe and secure relationship connections are also vital to emotional, spiritual, and physical health and happiness. I am passionate about helping couples unlock their painful patterns of interaction and find new ways to connect where their longings and needs can be met. I work with couples facing difficulties in their relationship, those who are having trouble navigating their own or their partner’s traumatic histories, those struggling to heal from affairs, or those wishing to deepen their intimacy.
Working with individuals, couples, and families is one of my life’s greatest treasures. I am honored to learn each client’s story, witness their incredible resiliency, and help them along their journey toward healing and growth.
Mariah earned an M.S. in Child Development and an M.S. in Marriage & Family Therapy from San Diego State University. While studying Child Development, Mariah was introduced to Attachment Theory, which proposes the idea that humans need to be in relationship with others as a means to survive. At the time, Mariah worked as a preschool supervisor at The Ronald McDonald House where she utilized an attachment-based approach to serve children and families undergoing medical treatment at Rady Children’s Hospital. Through this work, Mariah realized how vital a safe and secure relationship is for healthy development and trauma recovery.
While pursuing her second master’s degree, Mariah was reintroduced to Attachment Theory through the perspective of adults by utilizing Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT). Mariah believes that EFT helps provide reasonable explanations to an individual’s behavior when they lack a sense of safety and belonging. This explanation helps to soften blame and can aid individuals in learning to experience vulnerability as a foundation for healing and bonding.
Mariah wholeheartedly believes in knowing how it feels to be a client. She has completed several years of her own therapy, which has helped her understand Attachment Theory from both the therapist and client perspective. Mariah strives to create a safe, secure environment with each client as the first step in helping them along their journey of self-discovery and healing.
1/8/1985 – 4/12/2018
Ben passed away from SUDEP in his sleep at the age of 33. He lived a remarkable life filled with joy, love, curiosity, creativity, scholarly achievement, integrity, and profound connections to so many people.
Honoring a legacy….
Ben was an integral member of Lisa’s team. He was a marriage and family therapy intern in San Diego, California. He received his masters from University of San Diego and had completed various levels of training in Emotionally Focused Therapy and was supervised by Dr. Lisa Palmer-Olsen.
Ben was working on his doctoral dissertation in Marriage and Family Therapy at Alliant International University. He cared deeply for others, and sharing his life with family, friends, colleagues, and clients, still finding time to create beautiful music, read voraciously, journal about philosophy and politics, rock climb with buddies, garden, bake bread, and deliver food to homeless residents of his beloved San Diego East Village neighborhood.
Ben also dearly loved Tucson and the Sonoran desert, where he experienced guidance from teachers and mentors, and cherished long-lasting friendships.
Ben’s booming voice, gentle nature, deep intellect, quick wit, joyful presence, and wise advice will be profoundly missed by so many.
In Ben’s memory, we are accepting:
- Contributions to WINGS, Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation, Comprehensive Epilepsy Program. Please send a check or money order to: WINGS, 2929 E Camelback Rd, #122, Phoenix, AZ 85016
- Donations for Ben’s professional library and urban garden non-profit organization. Plase send a check or money order to: Dr. Lisa J. Palmer, The Alliant Couple & Family Clinic, 10065 Old Grove Rd, #102, San Diego, CA 92131