Julisa Morales, LCSW
I founded Women’s Inner Strength & Empowerment Therapy as a safe space for women of color because being a woman in society comes with a set of biases…being a woman of color adds a complex layer of cultural expectations, stigmas, and guilt, especially within collectivistic communities, which we internalize over the course of our lives. We are taught to care for our families, our loved ones, and others in general while putting our own needs to the side. Or, we are taught to keep our challenges a secret for fear of being seen as “weak” or “not strong.” Although it may not be intentional, it is an intergenerational trauma that has been passed on to us.
As a first-generation, bicultural, bilingual, daughter of immigrants from Oaxaca, Mexico, a professional, and being in an interracial relationship, I understand the challenges of being seen as an “other” in various spaces. I strongly maintain the belief that the therapeutic space is a judgment-free zone where you can feel comfortable being vulnerable without feeling like you are being analyzed. Therapy is not about “fixing” someone who is broken but rather improving your quality of life.
My approach is pragmatic and strengths-based. I believe in the importance of celebrating successes no matter how big or small they may seem. I believe therapy is a collaboration between therapist and client, where are the experts of your own life story and I’m the guide helping navigate through the roadblocks.
I studied abroad in Barbados at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill while obtaining my Bachelor’s Degree from UC Riverside.