The International Therapist Directory is celebrating 15 years!!

I want to take a moment to recognize this milestone. There have been many voices encouraging the ongoing development of this niche online resource over the last fifteen years, and I am grateful. In the earliest days, it was the folks at Interaction International, the organization originally founded by David Pollock. I can remember Dave speaking passionately about how a network of mental health therapists sensitive to the needs and experiences of TCKs and other internationally mobile people was sorely needed. In many ways, I believe my work on this project has been a direct outpouring of my gratitude for Dave and all the work he did to help so many of us discover a language to begin to describe our experiences to ourselves and to one another. His work spoke deeply to so many, and together, we stand on his shoulders. Thank you Dave.

In those early years, a couple of individuals were especially encouraging, including Ruth van Reken, founder of Families in Global Transition and co-author with David Pollock of Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds, and Lois Bushong, author of Belonging Everywhere and Nowhere: Insights into Counseling the Globally Mobile. I am so grateful to Ruth and Lois for their friendship over the years and their ongoing encouragement to develop and continue to curate this resource. Their belief in the need for it, and their joy in seeing it mature and grow, has been a source of refreshment over the years. Thank you Ruth. Thank you Lois.

In recent years, as the need for a website that included a lot more moving parts than original iterations emerged, I have to offer a significant thanks to Lydia Williams Keller, founder of Soundview Creative. Lydia, a former ex-pat herself, has been instrumental in re-tooling the site to make more effective use of today’s technologies. Lydia has been wonderful to work with, both for her technical know-how and for her belief and support in the vision of the site itself. Thank you Lydia.

Finally, thank you to all of the past, current, and future members of the ITD. This site would not exist without you. Thank you for the experience and perspectives you have to offer. Thank you for the work that you do. Thank you for participating in this project to help provide this service to the internationally-mobile community.

Working to create and curate the International Therapist Directory over the last 15 years has been very meaningful, and I look forward to what the next 15 years (and beyond) have to bring.


I recently had the privilege of being invited to participate in an interview with Lindsey Phillips, editor and chief for Counseling Today, as she worked to author a feature article on Third Culture Kids. Not only do articles like this one help bring the Third Culture Kid experience more thoughtfully into the public eye, but they do so in the context of the practice of counseling and psychotherapy. It is also a delight to highlight the International Therapist Directory this way. With permission, I am sharing Lindsey’s article, available in the link below.

“Growing up between cultures” by Lindsey Phillips, published in Counseling Today Vol. 65, No. 02 (August 2022): 35-40, Copyright © 2022, the American Counseling Association. All rights reserved.

All the best,


Josh Sandoz, MA, LMHC received his MACP in 2008 from The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology and currently works in private practice in Seattle, Washington providing individual psychotherapy for children, adolescents, and adults. Specializing in working with those impacted by international mobility, he also curates Josh is a past president of the Board of Directors of COR, Center for Object Relations, and has been deeply involved with the Northwest Alliance for Psychoanalytic Study. Since 2012, Josh has been singing alto on Sunday evenings with The Compline Choir at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral.

Families in Global Transition is a welcoming forum for globally mobile individuals, families, and those working with them. They promote cross-sector connections for sharing research and developing best practices that support the growth, success and well-being of people crossing cultures around the world.

I have enjoyed attending FIGT conferences in the past, and I continue to sponsor FIGT via the International Therapist Directory each year.

In 2018, Daniela Tomer founded the FIGT Counseling and Coaching Affiliate group on facebook which “serves as a platform of communication, to share information that is relevant to our niche in the field of global counseling and coaching. It can be the place to go when a counselor or coach is moving countries and faces new jurisdictions and professional practices; a place where relevant professional education opportunities can be shared; a place to find peer supervision and much more.”

As part of this initiative, Daniela worked with Shellee Burroughs, Tami Nelson, and Kelli Sanness to develop the Counseling and Coaching Coffee series, and they invited me to be a recent guest. I was able to share about my experiences developing and curating the International Therapist Directory and many other adjacent topics.

I really enjoyed the conversation, and I wanted to share it with you here as well.

Thank you, Daniela and company, for such an encouraging time together.


Josh Sandoz, MA, LMHC received his MACP in 2008 from The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology and currently works in private practice in Seattle, Washington providing individual psychotherapy for children, adolescents, and adults. Specializing in working with those impacted by international mobility, he also curates Josh is a past president of the Board of Directors of COR, Center for Object Relations, and has been deeply involved with the Northwest Alliance for Psychoanalytic Study. Since 2012, Josh has been singing alto on Sunday evenings with The Compline Choir at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral.

A highlight from this past Fall was meeting with Ray Barrett of the Telehealth Certification Institute. Ray interviewed me about the International Therapist Directory and its role in helping people find a therapist who can think internationally, holding in mind some of the cultural complexities and issues related to making extraordinary transitions that come with a life of international mobility. Ray was gracious enough to share the interview along with some information about the International Therapist Directory on the his website, and I am posting the link to the interview here as well for you to watch and share if you wish.

For anyone interested in learning more about the TeleMental Health Training Certificate, here is some additional information :

The TeleMental Health Training Certificate (THTC) is awarded to dedicated telemental health clinicians who have successfully completed the full THTC program.  The TeleMental Health Training Certificate (THTC) program provides evidence-based, advanced, and comprehensive training which prepares clinicians to offer behavioral health services while in a different location than the client through the use of technology. The target audience for this program is any behavioral health professional, including but not limited to, counselors, social workers, marriage and family therapists, psychologists, physicians, nurses, and chaplains.

There are several other terms used for TeleMental Health such as E-Psychology, Technology Assisted Social Work, Web-Based, Virtual, Distance Counseling, Telebhavioral Health, Telehealth, TeleMedicine, Online Counseling, Skype Counseling, and Tele-Therapy.

Clinicians who have earned the THTC take special consideration of their clients’ privacy as it relates to the use of technology, and the needed effort to ensure that they remain up-to-date on the best practices of providing services remotely.  

The THTC certificate requires completing all of the following courses:

  • Introduction to TeleMental Health
  • Legal Aspects of TeleMental Health
  • Ethics of using Technology in Behavioral Health
  • HIPAA Compliance for Mental Health Professionals
  • Ethical, Legal, and Clinical Aspects of Selecting Technology
  • Emergency Management Planning for TeleMental Health
  • Screening for Fit for TeleMental Health Services
  • Ethical and Clinical Skills of Video and Phone Sessions

The THTC alumni have awarded our program with the top ratings for its high-quality content, delivery, instructor, and customer service.

If you do decide to watch the interview, I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed speaking with Ray in the first place. I am grateful for this opportunity to speak about the International Therapist Directory and its place in helping people find a good therapeutic fit.

Happy New Year!


Josh Sandoz, MA, LMHC received his MACP in 2008 from The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology and currently works in private practice in Seattle, Washington providing individual psychotherapy for children, adolescents, and adults. Specializing in working with those impacted by international mobility, he also curates Josh is a past president of the Board of Directors of COR, Center for Object Relations, and has been deeply involved with the Northwest Alliance for Psychoanalytic Study. To round out these professional activities, since 2012, Josh has been singing alto on Sunday evenings with The Compline Choir at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral.

As I began to prepare my annual goals for curating the International Therapist Directory in early 2019, I felt a bit of a jolt run through me when I stopped and did the math, realizing that I first launched the initial version of this online resource a full decade ago. The site was much different back in 2009, originally housed under the umbrella of Interaction International, the nonprofit organization founded by Dr. David Pollock. Since that first version, the ITD has been through multiple iterations, and I can think of no better way to celebrate the Ten Year Anniversary than by launching a brand new version of the site with lots of new bells and whistles designed to benefit users and members alike.

If you have had this resource on your radar for very long, you have probably noticed the massive change in the look and functionality of the site in recent weeks. On March 1st of 2019, after almost two years of behind the scenes work with a web developer, the newest version of the International Therapist Directory went live online. It has been an exciting (and nerve-racking) step, implementing this many changes at once, and there are many new features that I am thrilled exist.

For example:

– members can now submit bio images and additional information about their practice and edit the information by logging in and editing whenever they wish
– the site is now mobile-friendly, making it easier to read on smaller screens
– the site is much easier to search by location, languages spoken, and clinical specialty
– listings are linked to Google Maps, making it easier for clients to find a listed therapist’s office
– the ITD Blog is now more prominently featured on the front page for easier access

However, a massive update of this scale does not come without some growing pains. Along with all that has gone well, search engine optimization takes some time to catch up, and we also have been discovering some rough edges here and there that need fixing and refinement. The work continues, and I would invite you to contribute in this process. If you are using the site and run into something that seems off, please let me know. I look forward to building on the improvements and making this site increasingly useful for the internationally mobile community for many years to come.

For the moment, however, let’s just pause to celebrate. It is satisfying to stop and reflect back on the last decade of International Therapist Directory work, while also looking forward to the next ten years, imagining what may lie ahead. Thank you for being part of the journey.

Happy Anniversary!


Josh Sandoz, MA, LMHC received his MACP in 2008 from The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology and currently works in private practice in Seattle, Washington providing individual psychotherapy for children, adolescents, and adults. Specializing in working with those impacted by international mobility, he also curates Josh is the current president of the Board of Directors of COR, Center for Object Relations, and chair of the Alliance Ambassador Committee at the Northwest Alliance for Psychoanalytic Study. Since 2012, Josh has been singing alto on Sunday evenings with The Compline Choir at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral.

Special Announcement: ITD Listserv

I am proud to announce the establishment of a brand new members only listserv for our ITD community. This email group is an electronic mailing list for members of the International Therapist Directory. What follows is a succinct explanation for the listserv purpose, how it works, and some community guidelines.

ITD Listserv Purpose

The creation of this ITD Listserv is in service of the major secondary purpose of the International Therapist Directory: to assist the listed professional mental health therapists (you and me) both identify and connect with one another for peer support and professional development.

The main idea here is that this gives us a group email address, and whenever an email is sent to that address, everyone the group receives the email. This will allow us to share referral requests, training and resource ideas, professional inquiries, etc… to assist one another in our work.

How the ITD Listserv works

Joining the ITD Listserv: If you are already an ITD Member, I need your active consent to opt in to the ITD Listserv if you wish to participate. This consent must be specific and verifiable.

If you wish to actively consent to participate in the ITD Listserv, please email me at:

In the subject line you can write:

ITD Listserv Consent

In the email (cut and paste if you like):

As an ITD Member, I would like to opt in to participate in the ITD Listserv.

Once you have joined: You will be sent instructions for how to send an email to all of the ITD members who are part of the listserv. On your member’s management page you can choose from three options about when messages are sent.

– Immediately: All messages sent to the group are immediately sent on to you.
– Daily Digest: Holds all messages sent to the group and once a day sends you a digest email.
– Pause All Messages: Stops sending you messages indefinitely but you will still remain a member of the group.

Of course, if you wish, you can also Opt Out of being included in the list at any time. If you do opt out and later wish to be part of the list again at some point, please write to to request being included again.

ITD Listserv Posting Guidelines

Subject Lines: When writing your posts, please be as specific as you can (without being too lengthy) in your subject line. This will allow members to search the message archives more easily for previously posted information.

Referral Requests: Many of you may have clients who move to a different part of the world, and you might wish to provide them with a referral. A use of the listserv can be to ask for referral recommendations. Feel free to include gender, general age of the patient, preferred locations and insurance requirements. Please refrain from including any identifying details about the patient. If you feel more information is required to make an appropriate referral, please ask for interested parties to get in touch with you individually.

Clinical Inquiries: Please feel free to use the listserv as a resource to ask other clinicians about how they might address a clinical situation you are encountering in your practice. When doing so, please be careful to use as few identifying details as possible regarding the case and/or your patient.

Practice Related Issues: Use the listserv as a resource for your practice. For example, if you are in need of a consulting group, training opportunities, or have questions about practicing in a certain part of the world, the listserv is a great way to support your practice.

Announcements of Community Related Events: If you or someone you know is hosting an event that might be of community interest, please use the listserv to get the word out. Please limit announcements to events related to the practice of mental health therapy.

Posting for Non-ITD Colleagues: While membership on the listserv is restricted to ITD members only, ITD members may post messages to the listserv on behalf of non-ITD member colleagues.

Confidentiality: Whenever making a post to the listserv, please honor our requirements of confidentiality by posting as few clinical details as possible when describing a case or patient.

Response Guidelines

Please note this group is currently set up such that when you reply to any posted message, your reply goes only to the person who sent the original email. If you’d like to have your response read by the entire community, respond by using the “Reply All” feature. If you do “Reply All” to respond to a posting, please be sure that your message pertains to the ‘subject line’ of the original post. This means, do NOT post a message on a new topic by clicking “Reply All” to a message on a different subject. Instead, initiate your topic as a new email with a unique subject line by sending a new email to the ITD Listserv email address.

If you post as suggested, it will create a nice chronological ‘thread’ of everyone’s responses on a given topic- a truly sequential dialogue. Everyone’s comprehension level will increase, and it will be visually easier to keep track of individual messages and conversations.

Thanks for your participation in this community!


Josh Sandoz, MA, LMHC
Seattle, Washington, USA

Este Directorio Internacional de Terapistas (DIT) Blog ha sido creado para resaltar miembros del DIT. Estos son terapistas, consejeros, psicólogos y psiquiatras interesados en proveer tratamiento y cuido que es culturalmente sensitivo a la comunidad emigrada internacional de hispanohablantes. Estos terapistas han expresado interés en ser destacados en este “post” y están organizados geográficamente.


Paula Vexlir, Registered Clinical Psychologist
Buenos Aires & Worldwide Online
Paula Vexlir, psicóloga clínica. Trabaja de modo online y presencial ayudando a expatriados y migrantes a través de sesiones individuales, de pareja o familia así como también con entrevistas de Orientación a Padres enfocadas en ayudarlos a apoyar a sus hijos, TCKs o chicos interculturales en sus transiciones. Ha desarrollado cursos online diseñados para mejorar la experiencia de expatriados y migrantes. Lleva adelante  un blog para contribuir con la comunidad a la que sirve. Más información en su web o su blog


Cristina M. Fandiño, Doctorado en Educacion, Master en Educación, Ed.D.; M. Ed., Lic. en Psicología
Toronto, Ontario
Estudios: Psicología Clínica, Psicología Transcultural y Psicología de la Adaptación. Universidad de Toronto; Universidad de Buenos Aires. Trabajo con adultos, de manera individual, así tambien como con parejas y familias. Me he especializado en choque cultural, transiciones; depresión y ansiedad; estrés,  mantener el equilibrio del trabajo y la familia; autoestima y crecimiento personal; separación o divorcio. Nacida en Buenos Aires, Argentina, estoy radicada en Toronto, Canada desde hace 30 años. Viajo constantemente por todo el mundo. En mi práctica privada, proporciono a expatriados psicoterapia y asesoramiento en persona y a distancia a través de Webcam y teléfono.


Nereida Gómez, MS, Master in Clinical, Legal and Forensic Psychology, Graphologist
Psicóloga clínica y psicoterapeuta especializada en Terapia Breve Estratégica. Bilingüe español e inglés. Trastornos de ansiedad, depresión, trauma, trastornos de alimentación, trastorno obsesivo compulsivo, problemas sexuales, miedos y fobias. Adultos, niños, y terapia de pareja/familia.

Estados Unidos

Lois Bushong, MS, LMFT
Indianapolis, Indiana
Lois Bushong creció en América Latina y ofrece su servicios de consejera en español. Trabaja en la oficina de Quiet Streams Counseling, Fishers, Indiana. Puede ponerse en contacto con ella en ljbushong@gmail o en su website.

Lic. Mariana Iurcovich, Clinical Psychologist from Argentina (Licensed: 15984) and Life Coach (QSCA)
Boulder, Colorado & Worldwide Online
Para aquellos que eligen el desafio de vivir en otra cultura, muchas veces, el lugar de destino no es lo esperado….los colegas nacionales tienen un estilo de trabajo diferente, las expectativas no se asemejan a la realidad. Que sucede con las parejas y familias de quienes optamos por una vida diferente ? quiza en el pasado en algunos destinos ha sido mas facil establecer una vida social, conocer familias con los mismos valores, pero si esto no ocurre, cuales son las consecuencias en la vida personal ?

He trabajado en 23 paises, conozco la diversidad cultural, y las dificultades de adaptacion personales y familiares. Ofrezco 30′ de consulta sin cargo para conversar y definir las necesidades.

Gabrielle Seekely, M.Ed., LPC-S, BCPC
Houston, Texas
Mi formación y mi experiencia durante más de dos décadas es en el Autismo, la Diversidad Neurológica, el Trauma, la Adopción, y las Personas y Familias Expatriados. Yo trabajo en colaboración con un amplio espectro de clientes a centrarse en sus capacidades y desarrollar aptitudes. Mi enfoque de tratamiento se adapta a cada cliente la distintiva de las necesidades y objetivos individuales.


Sheena L Flynn, LCSW-R, MA
Trabajo en In Touch Community Services en las Filipinas como pscicologa ofreciendo psicoterapia individual, grupal y de pareja. Mis especialidades incluyen: Trastornos de Ansiedad., Trastornos de Estres Posttraumatico, Depresion, Manejo de Estres, Estres por aculturacion, Codependencia Emocional, Violencia Domestica, y asuntos de dolor y perdida con individuos y parejas. Ofrezco consultas personales y profesionales en persona y atraves de internet o por telefono. Se que todos tenemos el derecho de recibir apoyo y alivio para transformar nuestras vidas.

Países Bajos

Camila Marques, MSc. Psychology
Somos un grupo de profesionales altamente calificados y con experiencia en el área del bienestar psicológico. Tenemos una visión moderna y holística de la psicología, dando orientación individual, familiar y a organizaciones a través de sesiones de training, coaching y terapia psicológica. Entre nuestros puntos de fuerza está la capacidad de ofrecer nuestros servicios en inglés, español, portugués italiano y holandés. Acompañamos a los expats y a sus familias de Rotterdam, La Haya y Leiden en convertir a Holanda en su “segunda casa.”


Lic. Rachel Chevallier Faustino, psicóloga clínica, certificada por la Federación Suiza de Psicólogos y Psicoterapeutas
Ofrezco asesoramiento a indivíduos, parejas y familias confrontadas a depresión, ansiedad y otras dificultades tales como vivencias traumáticas, enfermedades crónicas, relaciones conflictuales y dificultades de integración.

Happy New Year!!

As 2015 dawns, I want to take a brief moment to reflect on the substantive year of growth that was experienced over the course of 2014.

Perhaps most notably, updates were made to each of the following sections:

Albania, Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Colombia, England, Germany, Greece, Kenya, Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, USA, and Worldwide.

In fact, the Netherlands section experienced so much growth that it was reorganized to provide individual pages listed by province.

Several guest ITD Blog posts were posted over the course of the year, and I want to express special gratitude to Kate Berger, Kay Bruner, Lois Bushong, Judy Hansen, Mari, L’Esperance, Kim Roberts, and Paula Vexlir for each of their very thoughtful contributions.

The purpose of this directory remains the same:

– To help TCKs, adult TCKs, expatriates, repatriated expatriates, and otherwise internationally mobile individuals/families in search of mental health therapy identify accessible mental health therapists who self-profess to have an understanding of the common experiences of those who have lived and/or live an internationally mobile lifestyle.

– To assist the listed professional mental health therapists identify and connect with one another for peer support and professional development.
I’m looking forward to the upcoming year of curating the directory, hoping to see increased expansion and community building in the many months and years to come.

To each of of you, wherever you find may yourself ringing in the new year, I wish you all the best as we take these next steps together.


Josh Sandoz, MA, LMHC

As you may have noticed, for as much growth as the overall ITD site saw this past year, the Blog portion was quite in 2013. For the most part, that was largely due to those energies being redirected toward coordinating the quarterly ITD Newsletter for Members. Now, while those have been quite well received, it has been a fundamentally behind the scenes kind of effort.

I have enjoyed what the Blog portion of the site has been able to facilitate in the past, and there is nothing quite like a New Year to help frame my dreams for its revival. What follows is the introduction of a structure through which ITD Members can contribute guest ITD Blog posts throughout the year, seeking to further build community and highlight the work of various internationally minded therapists around the globe. Here are the details…

If you are a current ITD Member, you are welcome to contribute a guest ITD Blog post to be published here on the site.

Guest posts are to meet the following specifications:

– theme is to be directly related to TCK and/or International Expatriate matters

– length is to be no more than approximately 1,000 words

– a short 2-3 line author bio is to be included

– contributions are to be emailed to in Word

– contributions will undergo a review process as needed

– contributing content for a guest post does not guarantee publication

Those guidelines in place, I believe this invitation holds all kinds of promise for 2014 and beyond. I’m looking forward to interacting with Members over contributions and keeping the ITD Blog portion of the site active with new content over time. Further, the opportunity to make comments will be facilitated through the ITD Forum portion of the website, starting right here.

Cheers to 2014!!

This month marks an important transition for the International Therapist Directory. While non-profit sponsorship enabled the ITD to get up off the ground, it has been running independently for over two years now and has been growing steadily along the way. Growth is exciting, and it takes many forms. However, the current form of growth is more about maturation than numbers. Yes, the ITD is growing up!

The ITD has been, and always will be, about providing a service to the internationally mobile community. Mental health therapy is a service-oriented profession, whether that profession takes the form of an independent business, an agency practice, a ministry, or some kind of hybrid model. The ITD itself is designed to be an outpouring of that service mindset. It is a resource. And like any resource worth its salt, relevance and sustainability are vital.

That in mind, the ITD is moving to a Membership Model. What this means from a bottom line perspective is that listed therapists will more formally agree that they meet the stated requirements to be listed in the directory and they will pay a nominal fee of $35 (USD) annually to have their information listed in this important online resource.

For those of you curious about more than just the bottom line, read on…


The new Membership process asks ITD listed therapists to formally agree that they are “a professional mental health therapist with a therapy practice who is credentialed at a masters level or higher in a psychology/counseling related field with a thoughtful understanding of the TCK and international expatriate experiences.“ It is still true that those compiling the directory offer no specific endorsement of any of the mental health therapists listed and do not claim responsibility for the accuracy of the information provided, simply cataloging entries as self-reported by each therapist. However, the ITD has a specific focus, and this more formal membership agreement is intended to help further clarify how important the integrity of each listed mental health therapist is to maintain the stated ITD standards and purpose.


In reflecting on the years past and the anticipated years ahead, one of my key goals in making the ITD increasingly sustainable is to create a working budget. While the past two years witnessed a strong foundation laid out of my own personal resources, I believe more can be accomplished with some additional partnership. There are many ways to generate funding. I have elected to ask listed therapists to directly partner with my efforts. That said, the price-point for membership is intentionally set quite low. For less than $3 (USD) a month, therapists can have their information cataloged in the directory. The reason for the low price-point is that I do not want finances to be a barrier for qualified therapists who want to be listed. However, setting any price-point at all does ask listed therapists to take their listing more seriously. My hope is that with this investment comes increased motivation to keep listed information current. It also asks listed therapists to directly support the site, helping to cover operational costs and contribute resources to allow for future ITD promotional efforts. It is my sincere hope that the financial support generated this way will free me up to invest even more of my time and energy into enhancing the site and promoting the ITD globally.


Another kind of service the ITD has been providing is to make way for internationally minded mental health therapists themselves to connect, encourage one another, and develop professional relationships. To this end, a beginning has been made through efforts with the ITD Blog, the ITD Forum, and the initial stages of some regular ITD Newsletters. However, this is just the beginning. There is tremendous room for growth in this area, and it is my hope that moving to a Membership Model will greatly enhance opportunities for developing these efforts. The past has been solid, and the future is bright for the International Therapist Directory. If you are a mental health therapist reading this now who meets the qualifications for being listed in this online resource, I hope you will register, support the site, and support the TCK and internationally mobile community with your listing. It’s an important service, and together, we can have even greater impact.

To leave comments, please visit the link in the ITD Forum here.

The International Therapist Directory team is growing into… well, into a team!! For the past two years I’ve largely been pioneering this effort on my own, with lots of great support and encouragement along the way. However, I am thoroughly delighted to announce today that a local friend and colleague of mine, a Seattle-based therapist already listed in the ITD, has come on board behind the scenes to roll up her sleeves and help the ITD reach new potential.

Talitha traveled extensively throughout both her childhood and adult years, and her commitment to the internationally mobile community is reflected in both her counseling practice and in how she plans her yearly calendar. I am thankful for her keen interest in the ITD and in seeing quality mental health services become increasingly available for expatriates the world over.

To celebrate the reality of team, our initial joint effort, and the ITD’s next step toward increasing our online presence, was launched last night. That’s right, the ITD now has its very own facebook page. Please visit, “like,” and spread the word accordingly. Your partnership will lead to important further growth, as this is just the first of several new site upgrades planned for 2011.

Will you join us?

Thinking back over the past two years, I want to say thank you to some very key people who have offered tremendous support and encouragement as I went about the business of getting the ITD up and running.  There have been many helpful emails, phone calls, and conversations along the way, but a handful of individuals have really made a significant contribution to the development of this resource.  Reflecting now, I am full of gratitude…

To my former colleagues at Interaction International – most notably Libby Stephens, transition expert and long time TCK advocate as well as to Margie Ulsh, former long-standing editor of Among Worlds Magazine – your thoughtful interest and consistent enthusiasm in the earliest of days was invaluable to me. Thank you so much, and may your future endeavors be sweet!

To Ruth Van Reken, instigator behind the incredibly relevant annual Families in Global Transition conference, you have offered such consistently significant personal support along the way. I can’t thank you enough. You have been brilliant.

To John Powell, one of the founders of the annual Mental Health and Missions conference, I want to thank you for your early support and endorsement.

To Robin Pascoe, Expat Expert, you have advocated for the ongoing development of this resource in such heartening and tangible ways. For the interview and the opportunity to have the ITD highlighted through your very resourceful website, eternal thanks!

To Thomas Speckhardt and all the good folks at Youth Compass, thank you for your support and care and for the excellent work that you do with TCKs year after year.

To Steph Yiu, founder of Denizen, I am so grateful for your keen interest in this project and for the opportunity to write for your magazine and bring attention to the directory. You have created something beautiful and important. Thank you.

As I look forward to many more years of developing the International Therapist Directory, I am encouraged by the stories that make their way back to me of how this site has already been helpful. To everyone who has written to say thank you, share stories, and offer constructive feedback. I appreciate your taking the time to write. It’s an honor to work with you.

We really are in this together.

It is time for some narrative.

As the International Therapist Directory (ITD) continues to grow and expand, currently only in its 15th month of online existence, the addition of a blog component to the site feels like a natural and meaningful way to bring some narrative to what is otherwise a fairly straightforward and focused source of information. It is also loaded with possibility.

Over time, the ITD Blog could become a space for highlighting useful resources for therapists and the internationally mobile community, publishing interviews, offering words of introduction, explanation, and gratitude, or simply providing some written context for the directory itself. Today, however, my aim is to share a brief history of the ITD, a little bit about how this site began and why.

The ITD was born out of equal parts heartache, devotion, resolve, and hope. In my former role as Director of Child and Family Support Services at Interaction International, I received all too many emails from people asking if I knew of a mental health therapist in a certain part of the world who really understood the dynamics of the TCK or international expatriate experiences.

The emails came in from women and men of all ages, individuals concerned either for their own sake or for a son or daughter who were struggling and wanting to meet with a therapist who really “gets it” with respect to the cultural and lifestyle components of living an internationally mobile life. Those who wrote were having a hard time finding a therapist in their location who claimed to have these familiarities, and as I joined them in their search, I too found the hunt to be both painstaking and difficult. Something needed to be done.

As I began to scour the Internet and speak with other experts in the field, I could find nothing like the ITD. Many professionals I spoke with had a short personal list of therapists they knew who acknowledged this kind of proficiency, but nowhere could I find a global listing that was made available to the public, kept well maintained, and designed to be as comprehensive as possible. The more people I talked with, the more I became convinced that a resource like this needed to exist. Additionally, I increasingly noticed the personal energy I felt for such a project and the enjoyment I experienced in taking those exploratory steps. And so, I decided.

It was time to create the International Therapist Directory.

After hundreds of initial emails and conversations, a sufficient number of entries were gathered to warrant the launching of a directory. Just a touch after midnight on August 13, 2009, the opening version of the ITD went live online. Those were very exciting times. In its first year, the resource list was hosted and grew steadily under the Interaction International website, but as I left the organization in August of 2010, the management was gracious enough to release the project to me completely, recognizing the passion and enduring commitment I continue to carry toward developing the ITD as an independent site for months and years to come.

The ITD is still young, but it exists. For the past two years, I have carried it in my heart and mind, in conversation with others and online for the internationally mobile community to begin to utilize. A solid foundation has been built upon which to continue to grow.

In making this beginning, there are many people I wish to thank publicly. However, I count gratitude as important enough to save my thanks for the entire subject of the next ITD Blog entry. For now, consider the door to the narrative portion of the ITD officially… ajar.