Bella Tomei-Seabrooks

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I’ve never fit into a box.

For a long time, this was a source of confusion and pain. When presented with a demographic form, I already knew that there would be no box for me to check, no singular term that reflected my identity. I’d sometimes be given the option of the notorious “other” in the race category. I would begrudgingly put a checkmark in the small, black-bordered square - feeling more frustrated and confused as the years passed.

This was - and is - my everyday reality as a multiethnic woman. Growing up, my racial and ethnic identity were seldom understood by others or acknowledged by the institutions around me. As a result, I often felt invisible in the many spaces I existed. At the same time, I felt hyper-visible, keenly aware that I looked different from other people around me. I didn’t yet possess any language on how to describe such an experience, and I wasn’t yet sure how to challenge the status quo.

 As our personal challenges tend to do, my own experience of living outside of the box is what in many ways steered me toward my purpose and profession. I found myself fascinated by how culture and community shape mental health, in addition to the many other intricacies of humanness. The more I delved into the field of psychology, the more I understood - and learned to embrace - that all of my identities didn’t have to conform to the ideas I’d been taught. In fact, I’ve dedicated my clinical and research work to celebrating, cultivating, and advocating for the strengths that come from our differences.  

I know that so many of us can relate to not fitting into a box. Many of us hold identities that are “othered” in our world. Some of us once felt we fit inside of a box until a major change or life transition happened. These experiences can be isolating, confusing, and frustrating. And yet, there are are a multitude of strengths that emerge from these experiences too, highlighting the beauty, strength, and richness of what it means to be human. 

Part of my role as a therapist is to help you explore these ideas for yourself, and to generate new ways of coping, perspective-taking, and promoting agency that exists outside of the box. Together, we can help you to develop a sense of meaning and acceptance and an understanding of the specific tools you need to thrive.

Isabella Tomei-Seabrooks, M.A. holds her master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at Miami University. Isabella has treated patients across lifespan and worked in various settings, including community mental health, schools, and primary care.

Prior to her graduate studies, Isabella worked in advocacy at the American Psychological Association (APA), where she engaged in research and lobbying efforts. She also served as a mental health technician at a treatment center, supporting clients’ recovery journeys.

Clinically, Isabella specializes in treating individuals experiencing anxiety, depression, relationship stressors, trauma, cultural identity challenges, and life adjustments. Through a multicultural lens, Isabella is passionate about cultivating women’s strengths in the many active roles they fulfill. She uses evidence-based interventions, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, and acceptance and commitment therapy, while emphasizing a collaborative, compassionate space for her clients.

I believe..

  • I believe every single one of us has a purpose
  • I believe in the strength and healing of community
  • I believe in the power of compassion to change outcomes
  • I believe we possess more strengths than we give ourselves credit for
  • I believe taking a walk outside is one of the best methods of self-care
  • I believe it’s necessary to try new things and make mistakes in order to grow
  • I believe recovery is always possible and it’s never too late to change our story
  • I believe that healthy, transparent communication is critical in any relationship
  • I believe therapy is an art – a connection of heart and mind!

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