Seeking couples therapist - in-person in Berkeley, LGBTQ friendly

My partner and I are looking for a skilled couples therapist for in-person sessions in Berkeley or Albany. Qualities and strengths we're seeking include:

- Adept at seeing what's under the surface, noticing patterns and dynamics that we might not see, and reframing in a supportive way

- LGBTQ friendly

- Female or somewhere along the gender spectrum that isn't cis-male

- 10+ years of experience; ideally at least in their mid- to late-40s

- Ideally less than $200/session (is that possible in the Bay Area??)

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Hey, I would highly recommend our couple’s therapist, Ilona: She’s based in Berkeley and is licensed in emotionally focused therapy, which is the most research-backed option for successful couple’s therapy. She was excellent at identifying and working through dysfunctional patterns in my relationship with my husband—even ones that touched on sensitive topic areas. She was also open and supportive in conversations around my bisexuality. My husband and I no longer see her because she’s taught us how to successfully navigate conflict on our own. We’ve both grown a lot, as individuals and as a couple, with her help. We’re expecting our first child now, and I can safely say that without her guidance, we may have never gotten to this point. I can’t overstate the positive impact she has had on our lives—I hope she can do the same for you and your partner. 

As a gay couple, my partner and I have gained a lot of insight and added to our relationship toolkit with Shanna LoPresti of Whole You Therapy. Her website is I think that she checks most if not all of your desired qualities/strengths. Her office is in Oakland but near the Berkeley border. All the best!

Highly recommend Aretha Hampton LCSW or her associate Parras Hall. I’ve worked with them for years now, LGBTQI friendly, extremely thoughtful, and insightful. Highly recommend!

Julia Wallace in SF fits all your criteria, I believe, except for her location. She is queer, in her 50s and excellent. I saw her when I was in my 20s and she was still an intern over 20 years ago and I've had check ins with her over the years and she's still excellent. I'm not in therapy anymore but she is my go-to and I've sent a few friends her way who agree.