I believe that emotional distress is too often pathologized when it’s actually an understandable response to society’s oppressive systems. I view therapy as a safe, accountable space to explore and sit with hard feelings and examine how one’s identities and systems of oppression are informing what you’re feeling, what you’ve experienced, and the pain you may be carrying. I strive to be a transparent, flexible, and humble therapist and prioritize a collaborative relationship through which, with time and trust, you can feel safe to share and unburden your most vulnerable parts, (re)connect with authenticity, and work towards liberation.
I work with folks on a variety of concerns, including but not limited to trauma, anxiety, depression, interpersonal relationships, from an anti-oppressive lens that takes into account clients’ social identities, oppressive systems, and intergenerational trauma. I have primarily worked with people of color and/or who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community. Additional niches including people that would describe themselves as people-pleasing and/or who have sacrificed their authenticity in the hope of earning love and connection and have experienced emotional neglect or complex trauma more broadly.
I also approach therapy from feminist, relational-cultural, internal-family-systems lenses that serve to consider you as a unique individual and in relation to interpersonal, cultural, political, and societal contexts. We would work together on the goals/concerns you want to explore and co-create a safe space that honors growth, authenticity, healing, creativity, and liberation.
As someone that has utilized therapy for their own self-discovery and growth, I know the profound struggles of not feeling “understood” or “seen” by the person sitting across from you. I resonate with the frustrations around spending hours of your precious time explaining your culture and first-generation identity when you would rather be getting the help you so desperately desire.
The experience of therapy for many brown and black folks takes on the role of teaching your helper rather than being able to safely process your emotions with them. This in turn creates an exhausting cycle of defending yourself, your culture, and your community.
I stress the importance of culture and intersectionality in my work as people are multi-dimensional and should not be grouped as if there is a one-size-fits-all path to healing.
Safety and trust are two principles that are fundamental in fostering a strong therapeutic alliance and relationship, and are especially important to gain a deeper understanding of each other. I will serve as a support system for you in your own journey towards healing and engage in a collaborative effort to get you there. In a world that is so fast-paced, taking care of ourselves can be pushed onto the back-burner, putting even more stress onto our bodies.
I look forward to providing a validating safe-space free of judgement because, after all, our emotions are present for a reason. Seeking out therapy may not be easy or comfortable, but it is a powerful step that you are taking for yourself! I invite you to begin this journey with me.
My name is Xinlin Chen 陈 昕 琳 (she/her/hers). I am a board-certified psychiatrist and psychotherapist who helps adults struggling with systemic oppression, internalized oppression, identity, relationships, low mood, or anxiety. I am a medical doctor and completed my training at NYU School of Medicine. I completed my psychiatry residency training at NYU, before completing my fellowship in Public Psychiatry at Columbia University. I’m currently a Clinical Instructor at NYU Department of Psychiatry. I have experience training and working in a wide variety of settings that provide mental health services, including the NYU Faculty Group Practice, NYU Gender and Sexuality Service, Bellevue Family Therapy Program, Gouverneur Asian Bi-Cultural Program, and specialized programs that provide mental health care to domestic violence and sex trafficking survivors. I have taught and supervised psychiatry residents in training at NYU and Gouverneur Clinic. I’m able to see people who speak English or Mandarin.
Currently accepting new clients in person in Downtown Brooklyn.
My goal as a therapist is to be an individual where you can feel safe and talk without fear of judgment. Life is a journey with obstacles thrown at us at any moment. If you are struggling to maintain or achieve a quality of life due to emotional and/or mental distress, I’d like to join you in identifying your concern(s)/issue(s), collaborate with you to learn and implement positive life changes, to learn and/or strengthen skills that enable you to face present and future challenges, and to ultimately work together towards a life where you feel safe, healthy, and positive. I don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach to therapy. I believe that we are unique/different, that we can be faced with the same or similar situations, issues, concerns in life, but experience them differently. I believe that a genuine and honest relationship can be established, by being as objective, neutral, understanding, observant, and honest as I can be. I feel that my role as a therapist is not to be a teacher who instructs what is “right” or “wrong”, what you “should” or “could”, but rather someone willing to listen, brainstorm, challenge, and learn together.
I am dedicated to facilitating deep and impactful change. I not only treat symptoms but encourage my clients to aim for more connected and fulfilled lives. I believe that a safe, supportive and truly affirming environment is the beginning. From this place, clients are able to take necessary risks, enhance connections to self and others, lift or establish boundaries, desensitize and reprocess distress, among other meaningful shifts. This is achieved through methods such as imaginal and in-vivo exposure, visualization, mindful breathing and noticing and modifying experiences in real-time.
My approach to therapy is holistic and experiential. Holistic means that I help my clients explore and align multiple dimensions of their experience, including the cognitive, the affective, the somatic and the behavioral. Experiential means that we go beyond talking about experiences and actively work together to create new ways of coping and relating.
Please know that if we work together, I will actively and collaboratively move you toward a more expansive version of yourself. This will include giving you a user’s guide to your nervous system. I will bring my full self to the work, conveying humor, authenticity, expressiveness, and care.
Growing up as a BIPOC in America comes with many struggles. You may have felt unseen in school and unheard by those closest to you. Today, you might be experiencing microaggressions at work and finding it hard to define and maintain your boundaries in relationships. Your solution may have been to ignore them or try to “get over” them, but these experiences build up and leave you feeling exhausted, frustrated, and isolated. It can feel like you don’t know where you belong, what you care about, or what you want in life, and articulating this to friends and family can feel out of reach and impossible, especially as familial expectations and societal pressures weigh you down.
You deserve to feel supported, seen, and heard as you navigate these challenges and work through your past, live in the present, and plan for the future. If I have the opportunity to work with you, I will welcome you into a warm, non-judgmental space where you can share your struggles, discover what drives you, and release what has been holding you down. Along the way, you’ll learn practical tools for managing stress and emotions and communicating your needs. My goal throughout our time together will be to deliver a holistic, thoughtfully integrated treatment plan that meets your personal needs and goals and helps you feel confident about the person you’re becoming.
If you want to learn more about what this could look like, or you’re ready to get started, please reach out for a complimentary 20-minute consultation. I look forward to connecting with you.
I work with children, teens, and adults utilizing modern evidence-based therapy to treat anxiety, depression, racial trauma, and career burnout. I have an additional specialty in treating issues related to adoption, including identity formation and attachment difficulties.
My goal is to help my clients find ways to navigate their past and present challenges to achieve their goals both efficiently and effectively.
I use a strengths-based approach that recognizes a person's individual story and finds unique ways to work with each client toward their goals. I utilize CBT, TF-CBT, EMDR, ACT, and Sensorimotor therapies in treatment.
I strive to create a warm environment and am empathetic, supportive, and curious in my approach.
**DR.LEE IS ACCEPTING NEW CLIENTS AT THIS TIME**Dr. Esther Lee believes psychotherapy to be collaborative work between the therapist and the individual seeking holistic well-being and meaning in life. Her work experience at Columbia University Medical Center gave her a broad scope of mental health treatments with a focus on eating disorders treatment and perinatal mental health care. Furthermore, her experiences working at the counseling centers at Baruch College and Columbia University have given her a passion for helping young adults navigate the demands of academia and pursuit of their professional aspirations. Throughout her years of clinical experience, she has worked with individuals from a wide variety of backgrounds in terms of race/ethnicity, immigration history, sexual orientation, gender identity, and SES. She appreciates the intersections of identities and the complexities of sociocultural issues impacting the individual’s sense of self and well-being.
I work collaboratively with my clients to help them understand the thought patterns, belief systems, and expectations that influence how they move through the world. It is a process whereby, together, we bring the hidden pushes and pulls of their lives into clearer relief and empower them to make the desired changes in their lives.
As an Asian American therapist, I’ve been privileged to help many immigrant and Asian American clients focus on issues of identity and personal agency. Through this work, I’ve seen how living “between cultures”—navigating a multiplicity of perspectives, values, expectations, and obligations—can be instructive to anyone trying to make sense of the contradictions and conflicts in their lives and within themselves.
I work from an anti-racist, feminist framework, that addresses issues of equity and privilege. My approach integrates trauma-informed, and behavioral (CBT) approaches into a psychoanalytic foundation. I completed psychoanalytic training at the National Institute for the Psychotherapies, where I currently serve on the faculty.
The world can be a confusing place now more than ever and having a guide to help you make sense of it all is one of the best investments you can make in yourself. With my warm and relatable approach, I will create a safe space for you to rest, heal and learn how to move forward in the way most healthy and authentic for you. As a person of color myself, I am passionate about helping you navigate themes of identity and explore how your experience is impacted by cultural values and behavior norms.
Some of the struggles we can work through include stress and anxiety, relational challenges and conflict management. My approach is integrative and always strength based. I understand that each individual is shaped by their unique, multifaceted life experiences and reflect this in my adaptable and personal approach.
I will work with you to untangle hidden and complex narrative threads so we can understand the story of where you’ve come from, where you are now, and where you want go. Engaging with me will allow you to discover yourself and what drives your strengths and struggles so that you can live a life that most aligns with your values.