Clinician Spotlight: Fatema Jivanjee-Shakir

  • What is your current role? Therapist
  • What is your background? I am an eating disorder clinician, writer, and speaker. I have experience working with adults and adolescents in individual, group, and family therapy at the residential, partial hospitalization (PHP), intensive outpatient (IOP), and outpatient levels of care. My work is strongly informed by the Health at Every Size perspective. I have a special interest in working with BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Person of Color) clients, especially those of South Asian and Muslim backgrounds. Currently, I am a Primary Therapist at The Renfrew Center, a therapist in private practice at Conason Psychological Services, and a Board Member of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals New York chapter.


  • How would you describe yourself? Patient, Passionate, and Persistent


  • What is your favourite thing about your career? I love that I get to witness people’s recovery journey every day. I love the multidimensionality of eating disorder work. No session with a client is the same. Sometimes a session involves eating a meal together, while other times it involves exposures such as body image activities. Other sessions focus on exploring one’s personal history, while others are skills-focused. The variety of pathways within the client work, coupled with collaboration with dietitians and psychiatrists that allows me to view things from multiple lenses, is extremely exciting.


  • How did you get involved with eating disorder recovery? I grew up in a multicultural community, where I often saw my Caucasian friends who were struggling with disordered eating being seen and offered treatment for their struggles. Meanwhile, most of my BIPOC friends’ disordered eating patterns weren’t recognized, and therefore, went untreated. My mission in this field is to increase accessibility to eating disorder care for BIPOC folks.


  • What is your proudest accomplishment (personal or occupational)? Being able to participate in speaking engagements has been my proudest accomplishment, both professionally and personally. Growing up, I was always shy and nervous to speak in public. I would get so sweaty any time I had to talk in a group setting. Now, I’m not only able to speak in public, but I find it energizing!
  • What is something people do not know about you? One of my hobbies is making DIY skincare products.


  • If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, what would it be? “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” -Maya Angelou



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