In the past, when people have asked me why I became a therapist, it’s been kinda…awkward.
Often I could feel myself fumbling around for the right words. Truthfully, it’s a BIG question. Any person who chooses to become a therapist has an origin story that is inevitably very personal. For me, it was some combination of my spirituality, wanting to be in a life of service, and experiencing first hand how family trauma legacies get passed down.
The real answer is that I didn’t choose the game. The game chose me.
As a kid, I found people’s inner worlds and relationships completely fascinating. Having parents of different cultures helped me to understand how to be flexible and aware of unspoken influences on our choices. Pretty early on, I knew I wanted to be on a path that would use my gifts of intense curiosity and insight AND challenge my own growth every step of the way.
And thus my work began.
When I am not plumbing the depths of human experience, my fun times are petting ALL the animals that will let me, listening to hip-hop, and eating dark chocolate. My go-to karaoke is Montell Jordan. I dance with a little too much abandon – I try to remember to stretch.
THIS IS HOW WE DO IT
This thing called ‘therapy’ is a two person (sometimes three person) meditation on what is it like to be in your skin. When you want change, the irony is the slower we unwind your thoughts and feelings, the more bang for you buck you get. That means all the rushing thoughts and worries you live with are distracting you from making a difference in your own life.In my office, my clients depend on me to keep it real with them and use my truth in service to their healing. We stay focused on your current goals because therapy should be relevant to what you want to change right now. We laugh where we can, finding humor as medicine, even in dark moments.
My clinical theoretical orientation is psychodynamic – a blend of Object Relations, Jungian, and somatic approaches. For couples therapy, I apply my training in attachment and differentiation theories. I obtained my MA in Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Expressive Arts from the California Institute of Integral Studies in 2012. In addition to private practice, I’ve worked with children in low-income schools, elders in residential settings, and teens and their families in the juvenile justice system.
I am proud to serve as a board member of Bay Area Open Minds, a therapist organization committed to gender, sexual, and relationship diversity. I am listed as a Kink Aware Professional with NCSF.
California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
CAMFT-San Francisco Chapter
Bay Area Open Minds
Professional Development Coordinator Board Member
National Coalition for Sexual Freedom Kink Aware Clinician
The Psychotherapist Association for Gender and Sexual Diversity
South Asian Mental Health Initiative & Network
Asian Mental Health Collective
Certifications and Trainings:
Psychobiological Approach to Couple Therapy (PACT): Level 1 (2021)
Developmental Model Training for Couples Therapy: Level 1 and 2 (2018-2020)
Assessment and Treatment of Sexual Issues in Psychotherapy: Level 1 (2019)
Case Consultation year-long at C.G. Jung Institute of SF (2017-2018)
Brief trainings with the following: EFT, Hakomi Method, AEDP, Esther Perel, Relational Life Institute (Terry Real), Institute of Relational Intimacy
Deva is a psychotherapist practicing in the downtown Financial District of San Francisco, CA (LMFT #103816). She has worked with clients aged 6 to 88 in different settings since 2011. These days, she helps individuals and couples get more in tune with their wants and needs. She has a special focus on sexuality and folks of mixed ethnic or racial backgrounds.
She slightly prefers pie over cake, but loves dogs and cats equally.