I bring a wide range of professional and life experience to my practice as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and relationship and codependency expert. I wrote Codependency for Dummies and Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You. Over the course of 30 years, I’ve helped men and women recover from codependency and trauma. They become effective communicators with more autonomy and experience greater well-being, professional success, and satisfaction in their relationships and personal lives.

Couples learn to resolve problems, improve communication, and build trust and greater intimacy. I’ve had the opportunity to see many marry and others find strength and direction during the stress of divorce. While a Senior Mediator in Los Angeles Superior Court, I mediated divorce and custody and visitation disputes and did premarital and domestic violence counseling.

I speak to national audiences in the media and at professional conferences, such as the West Coast Symposium on Addictive Disorders, the National Association of Addiction Treatment Professionals, and the California State Bar Association. I counsel many professionals in the entertainment business, attorneys, and other industries, including those with addiction and mental health problems. I am familiar with 12-Step Programs.

My work is informed by training in Self-Psychology, Voice-Dialogue, Dream Analysis, Jungian Therapy, Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, Somatic Work, EFT, and Hypnosis. I’ve supervised other therapists as an AAMFT Approved Supervisor and practiced law as an entertainment attorney. You can read interviews about me and my journey here and here.


Certified Hypnotherapist, American School of Hypnotherapy

Certified Life Coach, American University of NLP
Masters in Clinical Psychology, Antioch University
Juris Doctor, U.C.L.A. School of Law
B.A., U.C.L.A., Cum Laude, Honors Program
Phi Beta Kappa
American Jurisprudence Award


Client’s comments

“Darlene is a pro at bringing the truth out of a patient. She helps you peel back the many layers of your troubles. She’s calm and serene and that feeling supplies a comfortable atmosphere to be honest without judgment.”
D.G., Los Angeles

“Darlene has an innate ability to sense what is at the root of an issue and to express those underlying factors in an approachable and hopeful way. She is an excellent listener and a gentle motivator. Each of her reading recommendations turned out to be books that changed my life. My relationship with my wife and my understanding of myself is forever changed as a result of our sessions.”
J.N., Santa Monica

“Thank you for helping me break through an emotional barrier that was affecting my whole life. When I first came to you I knew what I wanted to do but didn’t know how to go about it and certainly didn’t have the proper mind set for it. I knew from our first meeting that you would be straightforward with me and any delusions that I had could be overcome. My life was in an emotional “holding pattern” and now I have made steps towards real goals and accomplishments. I have my life back and the only way I know how to thank you is let you know that I’m one of the success stories that I’m sure you strive for. Thank You!”
Dave, Santa Monica

“I appreciate greatly the guidance of Darlene, and her ability to create a comfortable and welcoming environment. Her empathy, wisdom, and intuitive ability to understand and dissect through an issue help facilitate powerful growth. Going into therapy, I knew I needed help, guidance, and support. But many of the issues that were tackled were behind my awareness at the start. What I needed help with on the surface, soon turned to deeper wounds and false thought patterns that needed nurturing and diffusion. Darlene, you gently and patiently guided me to a deeper more accurate understanding of myself. I don’t know where I’d be had I not made therapy a priority in my life. I am coping better because my emotions don’t rule my life anymore. I recognize them, I’m more aware of their origins and the ability to look at them separate from myself. In therapy, I learned see myself more clearly, to love and accept myself, establish my autonomy, and build confidence within myself to live a fuller more authentic life. I gained the tools needed to accurately understand my feelings and the sources behind them. These tools have given me tremendous peace within myself and allow me to not become so rattled by life’s events. The palm tree bends in the wind but does not break. I am forever grateful.”
K.R., Los Angeles