Sarah Pallivalapil-Karerat (they/them) is a second-year Master of Social Work student at the University of Pennsylvania. After receiving their Bachelor’s degree in Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies and History from Middlebury College, they worked for several years in the partner violence field. They provided counseling and support groups for survivors, pursued outreach to the queer and trans communities, and facilitated trainings on gender, sexuality, and partner violence in the LGBTQ+ community. Most recently, they have brought their anti-violence focus to intimate partner homicide research, conducting trauma-informed interviews and providing therapeutic services as a Vicarious Trauma Specialist.

Sarah’s perspective is rooted in their experiences as queer, genderfluid, South Asian, an immigrant, and Muslim-raised, as well as their educational background in postcolonial feminist studies and queer, disability, and critical race theory. As such, their therapeutic approach emphasizes anti-oppression and decoloniality. Sarah understands trauma and our experiences as shaped by larger cultural and sociopolitical contexts, and thus sees harm reduction, defined more broadly as minimizing harm while working within unjust structures, as critical. Integrating warmth, transparency, non-judgment, and caring, Sarah aims to co-cultivate an environment in which choice is at the forefront.

Sarah is especially passionate about working with queer and trans people, survivors of partner violence, BIPOC folks, and immigrants, although they welcome individuals with all lived experiences to reach out. Their practice is relational, psychodynamic, and DBT-informed. Additionally, they have undergone Part I of EMDR Training, and will engage in further training in EMDR and psychodrama during their internship at The Phoenix Center. They look forward to creating a therapeutic environment with you that can hold space for vulnerability, healing, and joy.

Sarah ‘s typical fee is $85 for individual therapy (50 min); they can work on a flexible sliding scale if needed.