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Therapy Office

"I have come to believe that caring for myself is not self-indulgent. It is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare."

Audre Lorde

Marisa La  Piana LCSW

Open Minded, Affirming Therapy


My Approach

Life is stressful for everyone these days and disconnection from ourselves and others can lead to increased emotional distress and trauma . I believe connection is central to healing and I approach the work with an open mind and heart. As a therapist my approach is warm, open and friendly. I believe that a trusting, safe relationship is essential to all therapeutic work. I will offer tools including; acceptance, compassion, inner child healing and body based somatic exercises to help you become “unstuck” in old patterns and move towards a rich and meaningful life. Together we will work to gain awareness of unhelpful patterns, towards achieving clarity and building greater connection to those around you. I often use mindfulness to build self-awareness, work towards accountability with yourself and others, and move forward in a more compassionate, embodied way. I will support you with navigating your nervous system's reactions to promote wellness and achieve your highest self. You are not alone, I will act as a witness, sounding board and mirror to attune to your particular struggles and unique gifts as we collaborate on how to move forward navigating this journey called life. Together, we will move towards confidence, empowerment, and healthy successful relationships.


My Clients

My practice was created with the needs of women, young adults, queer, polyamorous, kinky, transgender, disabled and neurodivergent folks at the center. It is deeply influenced and inspired by the inherent strengths, resilience and wisdom of these communities. I also take into account systemic, historical and intergenerational traumas that often create challenges for those holding these identities. Many queer, trans and disabled clients come to therapy with body-related trauma and or feeling disconnected from or overwhelmed by their bodies as a survival response to homophobia, transphobia and ableism. A somatic trauma based healing approach can help you start to build a deeper connection with your body so that you can live as authentically as possible. I believe that therapy is political. It is important to me to create space for all of our intersectional human identities and the ways in which both our privileged and marginalized identities impact our lives and shape our relationships and interactions, including in the therapeutic space.

Image by Shingi Rice

Psychotherapy Services

I take a feminist, queer and anti-oppressive approach to therapeutic work. I have specialized training in a wide array of therapeutic approaches including: somatic trauma based healing approaches, mindfulness based stress reduction (MBSR); Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). I also incorporate solution-focused and person-centered approaches and offer longer-term insight oriented therapy as needed. We will work together to find the approach that would work best for you!

I bring the following values to my clinical work: 



health at every size

queer and trans affirming 

polyamory affirming 

neurodiversity affirming 




survivor centered 

sex positive 

pro-sex work 

kink affirming 

Four LGBTQ people celebrating pride while sitting together. Four friends smiling cheerfull
Breathing Meditation

LGBTQ Affirming Therapy

Somatic Trauma Healing Therapy

Neurodiversity Affirming Therapy

Therapy session
Teen girl giving interview to social worker. School psychologist talking with student, cou
Favorite song on radio. Attractive young charismatic and stylish queer girl in glasses car

Anti Racist Therapy for White Bodies

Teen and Family Therapy

Non-Monogamy and Kink Affirming Therapy

Queer Prom


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"If I didn't define myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive." -Audre Lorde

About Me

I identify as a queer white neurodivergent femme and use she/they pronouns. As a queer-identified, demi-gender, intersex woman with class and race privilege, I believe it is important to prioritize naming our social locations and how they inform the ways we move, think and show up in our lives. I have a genetic condition called Turner Syndrome that impacts the ways in which I communicate and move through the world. Culturally, I am Italian American and Jewish. I identify strongly with a Buddhist philosophy. I practice meditation in my personal life and enjoy integrating these techniques into sessions with clients to facilitate a mind, body, spirit connection. I believe that our pain and suffering is directly connected to our values and that exploration of our pain can lead to our liberation. I am passionate about social justice and strive to bring cultural accountability into my therapeutic work, maintain a lifelong examination of my areas of privilege, particularly around my whiteness, and hold an anti-racist, anti-oppressive lens. 

Clinical Approaches

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Feminist, Attachment-Based Therapy, Client-Centered Therapy, Mindfulness Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Solution-Focused Therapy, Somatic Therapy, Trauma-Focused Therapy


Education: University of California Berkeley Social Welfare, 2015

Group Portrait of Queer Friends

Contact Me: Marisa La Piana LCSW #85194


Phone: 510 842 7702

I love helping my clients develop the tools they need to cope with all of life’s challenges. Contact me today to learn more and book a session.

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Getting Started

Please reach out via email or phone schedule a free 15-30 minute consultation.

Fees and Insurance

I am on the SHIP UC Berkeley insurance panel and also can submit a superbill for out of network. I charge a fee of $180-205 per individual therapy session and $220 for a family session. I have space for a few lower fee slots with priority given to black, brown, indigenous and disabled folks. I would love to hear from you!


Payment is due at time of service and clients can pay using credit card or check. Clients are responsible for any and all charges incurred in our work together. I  will keep your credit card on file and it will be charged at the end of each session. I utilize a HIPAA compliant payment system in which your credit card information will be securely stored. I also accept cash at the time of service. Even if you are paying in cash, I will still request to have on file a credit or debit card.

Filling a Compliant: 

The Board of Behavioral Sciences receives and responds to complaints regarding services provided within the scope of practice of clinical social workers. You may contact the Board of Behavioral Sciences by calling (916) 574-7830 or by visiting

Good Faith Estimate Notice
You have the right to receive a “Good Faith Estimate” explaining how much your medical and mental health care will cost. Under the law, health care providers need to give patients who don’t have insurance or who are not using insurance an estimate of the expected charges for medical services, including psychotherapy services.You have the right to receive a Good Faith Estimate for the total expected cost of any non-emergency healthcare services, including psychotherapy services. You can ask your health care provider, and any other provider you choose, for a Good Faith Estimate before you schedule a service. If you receive a bill that is at least $400 more than your Good Faith Estimate, you can dispute the bill. Make sure to save a copy or picture of your Good Faith Estimate. For questions or more information about your right to a Good Faith Estimate, visit or call (800) 985-3059.

I welcome people of all sexual orientations, genders,
races, cultures, faiths, abilities, sizes and lifestyles.

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