About Dr. Darien

Hi there, I'm Dr. Darien

As a highly sensitive person, I know what it's like to feel that others don't understand how you feel. I’ve been called “too sensitive” and I know how it feels to navigate a world that is not designed to honor sensitivity but feels overwhelming a lot of the time.

Being highly sensitive means that you observe what is around you at a deeper level than others. Your nervous system is more responsive to external stimuli meaning you may become easily overwhelmed. High sensitivity can also come with many strengths such as being more empathic and in tune with the suffering of others. In our work together, I’lll help you to navigate the difficult challenges that arise from living as a sensitive human in an overwhelming and highly complex and stimulating environment while also recognizing and honoring your sensitive traits.

Identity and Culture

From an early age, I’ve had a passion for learning with and from people from cultures around the world, which led me to live and work in Ecuador, Costa Rica (Peace Corps), and Spain, where I became fluent in Spanish. These experiences challenged me to confront how my upbringing as a white American influenced my thoughts, feelings, actions, and biases. Upon returning to the United States, I made a commitment to work with immigrant communities. I pursued a PhD in Counseling Psychology at the University of Oregon, specializing in supporting Latinx communities through therapy and research conducted in Spanish.

Post-graduation, I continued working with refugee and immigrant populations at community mental health center clinics. Currently, I provide culturally-responsive immigration evaluations in both English and Spanish and collaborate with clients who speak other languages with professional interpreters.

Having grown up in a neurodiverse community, I honored the unique strengths and creativity found among neurodivergent individuals, leading me to specialize in assisting those with ADHD. Additionally, as someone who identifies as queer, I have developed specialization in providing support to individuals within the LGBTQIA+ community.

Couples and Cross-Cultural Relationships

Most people in relationships have differences in some aspect of their identities (race/ethnicity, culture, gender, sexual orientation, age, etc.). I’m a white person of European ancestry and my life partner is an Afro-Latino immigrant of Costa Rican and Panamanian-descent. Being part of a multiracial/muticultural relationship has led me to a passion for and commitment to working with couples, and in particular, helping people to explore the unique strengths and challenges of navigating a cross-cultural relationship.

During our therapy sessions, I create a non-judgmental space where both (all) partners feel comfortable expressing their thoughts, feelings, and concerns. I’ll help you develop effective communication skills that take into account your individual identities and cultural perspectives. You’ll learn how to communicate so that each of you feels seen, heard, and that your racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds and previous life experiences are understood and honored in your relationship.

Professional Background

I’m a bilingual (English/Spanish) licensed psychologist in the State of Colorado (Colorado License # PSY-5964). I obtained a PhD from the APA-accredited Counseling Psychology program from the University of Oregon with a specialization in Spanish Language Psychological Services and Research.

  • Pre-Doctoral Internship at Aurora Mental Health Center

  • Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the Colorado Refugee Wellness Center and the Asian Pacific Development Center at Aurora Mental Health Center

  • Previous Adjunct Faculty at University of Denver’s Graduate School of Professional Psychology

  • Master’s in International Disaster Psychology: Trauma & Global Mental Health program and Graduate School of Social Work program

Get in Touch

Book a free consultation with Dr. Darien.