Rita (she/her, they/them) is the Associate Director of Training at Natalis. In addition to a love of training developing practitioners, Rita has a range of experience working with clients individually and in group settings. She has this to say about her experience and practice style:
I value all of the work I do, and all types of people are welcome in my space. I have an emphasis in practice working with people from marginalized/oppressed communities (e.g. BIPOC, LGBTQIA, people with disabilities to name a few), sex positivity, poly/open relationship orientations, grief/loss/transition, college student mental health, neurodiversity, white accountability, and earth-based spiritual traditions. I especially enjoy working with individuals who are new to and/or unsure if counseling is the best option for their well-being.
I believe in equity, justice, and honoring individuals, communities, and nature. The world is a big place, and our personal paths are often shaped by family, friends, community, institutions and experiences; sometimes it is these exact experiences that bring someone to counseling. Being mindful of and addressing oppressive, discriminatory, and colonized ways of being are key personal and professional responsibilities I hold. I consider it an honor to do the work of counseling, and my style is very collaborative– you have valuable wisdom and experience to share. A core element of my style is that our work should always feel safe while recognizing it might not always feel comfortable as we grow.
Education & Professional Activities
Rita is a Licensed Psychologist in Minnesota and holds both a Master’s degree and PhD from the Counseling and Student Personnel Psychology program at the University of Minnesota. In addition to her training through an APA accredited doctoral program, Rita completed an APA accredited predoctoral internship with Student Counseling Services at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Sandidge’s post-doctoral fellowship focused on sexual health and gender under the supervision of Tera Jansen, PsyD, LP, CST. Rita has additional experience in forensic settings with a wide variety of age ranges and counseling concerns, and has been providing mental health services for over a decade. Rita is trained in clinical supervision and holds an adjunct faculty position at a local university.
Career Counseling & Assessment
Poly, open, consensual non-monogamous relationships
Sexual orientation and identity
Kink and BDSM
Gender identity and expression
Trauma including historical, generational, and institutional trauma
College student mental health
Exploring therapy as a useful resource
Stress management and coping