Individual and Couples Therapy

Catherine Cassel, LCSW  

My Approach to Psychotherapy

If you have made your way to this site, chances are you are facing

some challenges in your life and wondering if therapy can help.

Many individuals and couples approach me for therapy feeling they’ve

hit a road block in their efforts to lead a more meaningful and fulfilling life. 

Others are facing a major loss and are needing support and hope in recovering from it.


Whatever your reasons for beginning therapy, my expertise is in helping deepen your understanding of yourself and your situation. 

I will help you to recognize not only the external obstacles, but the internal obstacles that are interfering with your reaching your goals, and to gain insight

and learn tools for how best to work on resolving them.


My approach to therapy centers first on our developing a relationship

of mutual trust and respect.  My style is empathic, interactive and collaborative.


   I invite you to read my website and then to speak with me directly.  

At its foundation, therapy requires a good working relationship with your therapist. 

A conversation together will likely be your best means of determining if

I am a good match for your needs.

My Practice

Individual Therapy - Couples Therapy - Consultation

Individual Therapy



Multiple factors combine to influence our emotional and psychological lives: 

our environment, culture, family structure and relationships, as well as our individual

temperaments and experiences.

In individual therapy I explore with you these many facets of what makes you

who you are, and provide insight about where you are, how you got here,

and tools for change in pursuing your goals.

Some common issues my clients seek therapy for include:

Personal growth


Physical or sexual abuse


Self Esteem

Difficulties at work



Life transitions

Gay/lesbian issues

Relationship issues


Loss and grief

Adult Children of Alcoholics

Substance use and abuse


Couples Therapy

As with individual therapy, each individual in a couple bring their own

unique strengths and vulnerabilities to the relationship.

But a couple is also more than a sum of its parts -- it is a living organism of its own 

with a life history and a set of developmental tasks to master and grow through. 

Couples often seek therapy when their relationship is stuck in a pattern and in

a stage of development that they cannot yet find a way through.

By appreciating the strengths and challenges of both the individuals in the couple,

as well as the couple itself -- I can help you extricate yourselves from old patterns

and explore the opportunities and tools for growth your relationship offers you.

Some common issues my couples clients seek therapy for include:

Loss of intimacy               

Considering parenthood

Frequent fighting

Feeling distant

Alternative families



Sexual dissatisfaction

Trust issues

Parenting concerns


LGBT couples




I provide individual supervision and consultation to

MSW, MFT and PhD interns and licensed psychotherapists

seeking to sharpen their skills and deepen their understanding of the practice of

individual and couples therapy.

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About Me

I have been in practice working with individuals and couples for over 30 years, and my work is informed by extensive training in psychodynamic and couples psychotherapy.  Additionally, I  have studied and trained with leaders in the fields of family therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, hypnotherapy, group therapy and mindfulness-based therapy.


I received my M.S.W. from the University of California - Berkeley in 1985,

and am licensed by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences

(#LCS 12982) as a Clinical Social Worker to practice psychotherapy. 

Along with maintaining my private practice, I worked for years in both inpatient and outpatient medical and mental health settings earlier in my career.


I have supervised pre and post-graduate interns and clinicians both in clinics and in private practice, and have led workshops and conducted trainings in a range of clinical subjects, including working with clients with AIDS, clinical and legal issues in child abuse, couples work, and clinical issues with lesbian parents.


BA    Beloit College   1978

MSW  University of California  1985 




Associate - The Milton H. Erickson Institute of the Bay Area

    Alumni Member - PACT Institute (Psychobiological Approach to Couples Therapy)

 Member -  National Association of Social Workers

      LCSW  -   California Board of Behavioral Sciences - 1988



Office Policies

Fees and Scheduling


At our initial phone conversation we can discuss scheduling, fees and frequency of sessions. 

I generally see individual clients for a 50 minute

session once or twice weekly, and couples for a 80 minute session weekly

or every other week.  I have a standard rate for each hour, however,

I reserve a limited number of sliding scale appointments for clients

who are on a fixed income or, because of their particular circumstances,

are unable to pay my full fee.


Unless we make alternate arrangements, payment is required at the time

of each session, and Venmo, credit cards or checks are accepted.


I no longer participate in HMO panels due to the financial constraints,

limitations in treatment protocol, and compromised confidentiality this

entailed.  However, I can provide you with monthly statements to submit

to your insurance provider or to your health care reimbursement program.


Once we have scheduled a regular time for your sessions, I ask that you contact me by phone 24 hours in advance if you need to reschedule or cancel.  I charge for sessions which are cancelled less than 24 hours in advance.



Contact Me

During COVID-19 :

all sessions are online

or by telephone.


Telephone:  #510-540-0193


Offices in Oakland and San Francisco

Mail address: 

Catherine Cassel, LCSW

P.O. Box #218

Berkeley, CA. 94701