“It is the set of the sails, not the direction of the wind that determines which way we will go.”

— Jim Rohn

(ˈpôrtl-ən,-ˌan/) noun, historical
a book of sailing directions with charts and descriptions of harbors and coasts.


Welcome, you are in the right place and help is available!

As an experienced therapist, I assist clients to deal with emotional issues stemming from addiction (individual or related to family of origin), trauma and mental health. The unique experience I possess in scientific research enables me to strive to apply therapeutic interventions that have the best available evidence to be most effective. Combining the right tools to each client's unique needs leads to interventions that generate the desired change.

The therapeutic framework I use: Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)


Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) has been the first line of treatment for individuals displaying the diagnostic criteria for Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and has recently been successfully applied to many other conditions ranging from anxiety to addictions.

I have years of experience with DBT, not only in delivering it to a variety of clinical populations, but also using the skills I teach in my personal life. I 'practice what I preach' and firmly believe that we are all 'on the same boat'.

In working with clients I strive to provide them with skills that last a lifetime; with the tools gained and practiced during therapy sessions, clients are able to meet current and future challenges with a new awareness and new outcomes.

Come see me for a free consultation. I can't wait to hear how I can help!



Addictions Expertise and Knowledge


I know that everyone's journey, although similar, is unique; the dialectic in treating addictions is that the biology may be inevitably similar and the emotional experience is extremely personal.

I strive to work with you individually to find what is effective in this junction of your life. This may include encouraging attendance to DBT groups, 12 Steps, Smart Recovery, Refuge Recovery as well as coordinating professional medical assistance when the daily struggles become daunting.

The whole family system is affected by any addiction and I am experienced in assisting concerned family members. Knowledgeable, targeted family involvement is often a key factor in an individual's recovery.

A program specifically designed for addictions using a DBT blueprint has been found effective and is being currently offered to individuals that have recently finished intensive outpatient and anyone who wants to maintain their sobriety.

Check my Resources page for more information.



"No Relationship has only smooth sailing."

- Marsha Linehan


Silvia Ships.png

Couples often get stuck in ineffective behavioral patterns that keep them from a healthy connection. Couples' work is often undermined by hidden, unresolved individual reasons.

With couples I often choose to use experiential techniques, which allow individuals to fine tune the capacity to 'put themselves in the other's shoes'.