Christopher Bernschein, AMFT
I offer a warm, inviting, culturally-sensitive environment for couple and relationship counseling. I work collaboratively with clients to identify barriers to authentic contact with self and others and to assist clients in creating opportunities to shift patterns of contact that are no longer working. To engage this process, I use Gestalt therapy and attachment theory primarily, as well as other modalities appropriate to the issues being addressed. I strive to welcome what emerges in the present moment and support relationship partners in experiencing and sharing parts of self that are vital for greater understanding, expression, acceptance, and healing.
I believe that relationships provide some of the greatest opportunities for personal growth, partly because they repeatedly test our ability to navigate conflict and difference successfully. Becoming more skilled in resolving conflict and honoring differences in our relationships can lead to significant changes in our relationship with Self, which can in turn result in even stronger and more resilient relationships with those we love.
I am an advocate for the LGBTQ community, sex-positive, and supportive of kink and polyamory.
-Christopher Bernschein, San Francisco Couples & Sex Therapist
Christopher works with couples, families, and other non-traditional relationship configurations to address areas of stress or dissatisfaction, including ineffective communication, problems with intimacy, lack of vibrancy or sense of value, depression, anxiety, issues with relationship boundaries, challenges resolving conflict, differing value systems, cross-cultural issues, and relationship dissolution, among other things.
“We cannot change, we cannot move away from what we are, until we thoroughly accept what
we are. Then change seems to come about almost unnoticed.”
- Carl R. Rogers
GESTALT THERAPY: AN INVITATION TO ALL PARTS OF SELF
Gestalt psychotherapy strives to acknowledge and welcome all parts of self that emerge in present moment awareness. In this context, I will support you in contacting and experiencing parts of yourself that are vital for greater self-understanding, self-acceptance, self-expression, healing, and integration.
I will work collaboratively with you to identify barriers to authentic contact with self and others, and assist you in creating opportunities to shift patterns of contact that you believe are no longer working. This process is engaged by facilitating your awareness of physical, emotional, and cognitive elements of experience. To support this work, I offer you a warm, inviting, inclusive, culturally-sensitive environment for therapy.
MY INVITATION TO YOU
Do you identify as someone who does not measure up to the person you were expected to be, or someone who does not fit certain norms, or someone who feels unfulfilled and yearns for more? If so, we can work together to bring forth a more robust expression of who you are and heighten your sense of aliveness. My therapy practice includes a diverse group of individual clients who are addressing challenges at different points in their lives.
My therapy practice also includes couples and families, as well as others in non-traditional relationship configurations. Are you a member of a relationship that is suffering (e.g., from problems with communication, problems with intimacy, vital parts of self not being valued, issues with relationship boundaries, problems with forgiveness, etc.)? If so, we can work together to facilitate change through relationship counseling. Relationships offer some of the greatest opportunities for personal growth, partly because they also test our ability to navigate conflict and differences. Counseling can help improve relationship functioning, with significant positive impacts on all those involved.
Finding a therapist who is a good fit for you is essential in developing an effective therapeutic relationship, which is a critical factor in realizing positive results. I offer a free initial phone consultation to help us determine if we are a good fit with one another.
Family & Relationship Counseling
LGBTQ+ /Queer Couples Counseling and Individual Therapy
Intimacy & Sexuality
Life Transitions / Mid-Life Crisis / Career Change
Spirituality / Personal Growth / Meditation
Certified in Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
My education includes a B.A. in Economics from the University of Virginia in 1991 and an M.A. in Counseling Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies in 2016. I completed my degree in counseling after a 25-year career in the financial and legal management fields. I have also been actively involved with yoga, meditation, and wellness over the last 15 years.
Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology, 2016, California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco, CA
Bachelor of Arts in Economics, 1991, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA
3150 18th Street, San Francisco, CA 94110
(16th & Mission is the nearest BART station)
San Francisco Couples & Relationship Counseling
Associate Marriage and Family Therapist #96539
Associate Professional Clinical Counselor #3522
Supervised by Gieve Patel, MFT, #47196
Office located in the Mission, San Francisco