Alan Kessler


Alan Kessler


Professions: Marriage & Family Therapist, Psychologist, Psychotherapist
License Status: I'm a licensed professional.
Primary Credential: Psychologist - PSY11209
Secondary Credential: MFT - MFT21553
Billing and Insurance:
to ask this therapist for billing and insurance information.


42 Wadsworth Ave.
Los Gatos, CA
Los Gatos, California 95030

My Approach to Helping

Choosing the right therapist is important and often daunting. So, you can get a better idea if I might be right for you, here's how I work.

The psychotherapy I offer is very centered around the unique experience and psychological functioning of each individual. In an emotionally supportive way, we clarify fundamental patterns of thoughts and emotions. Some of these patterns have led to satisfaction and happiness, while others have led to unhappiness and lack of fulfillment. Reactions to relationships (including our therapeutic one), everyday events, memories and dreams are materials for the quest.

In addition to psychotherapy, I offer psychoanalysis to individuals who would benefit from this approach. Psychoanalysis is characterized by a very 'alive' engagement between patient and therapist. This 'alive' engagement is very good at revealing both beneficial and non-beneficial modes of thinking and feeling. Evidence and my experience indicate that psychoanalysis is the most complete and long lasting way to help a person.

In both the psychotherapy and psychoanalysis I do,an individual not only becomes more self aware, but he/she also has the opportunity to try on a new ways of relating to her/his self and to others. This is often an emotionally moving experience which leads to positive change. Beyond just relief of symptoms, individuals gain resources for facing future challenges, for enjoying work and relationships and for living with motivation.

More Info About My Practice

I am a seasoned therapist with over 25 years of experience. I have a deep conviction to providing individuals with the highest quality, most effective help I can. By training, I am a psychoanalyst (certified by the American Psychoanalytic Association), a licensed psychologist, and a licensed marriage and family therapist. In addition, I am a Supervisory and Training Analyst, as well as faculty member of the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis. My duties there include supervising advanced therapists who are in training to become psychoanalysts, and teaching classes. I also teach classes and provide consultation to other mental health professionals.

Specific Issue(s) I'm Skilled at Helping With

An area of psychotherapy I feel particularly knowledgable in is in helping individuals who are troubled by guilt and shame. These feelings can have considerable emotional and behavioral consequences, even though they are not always in awareness. They often underlay and lead to depression and anxiety, as well as to a host of behaviors that are ultimately self limiting, self sabotoging and even self punitive.

Services I Provide

  • Individual Therapy & Counseling
  • Marriage, Couples, or Relationship Counseling
  • Family Therapy
  • Consultation
  • Clinical Supervision
  • Other

Ages I Work With

  • Teens
  • Adults
  • Elders


  • English

Groups I Work With

    I specialize in working with people who have been chronically depressed and have difficulty getting into satisfying intimate relationships and then staying in these relationships. Often, the individuals I have been most helpful to have tried medication and other forms of therapy than the modern psychoanalytic approach which I use.

Client Concerns I Treat

  • Abandonment
  • Addictions and Compulsions
  • Adjusting to Change / Life Transitions
  • Adoption / Reunion Issues
  • Aging and Geriatric Issues
  • Anxiety
  • Attachment Issues
  • Body Image
  • Career Choice
  • Child and/or Adolescent Issues
  • Codependency / Dependency
  • Communication Problems
  • Compulsive Spending / Shopping
  • Control Issues
  • Creative Blocks
  • Depression
  • Dissociation
  • Drug and Alcohol Addiction
  • Emotional Abuse
  • Emotional Overwhelm
  • Emptiness
  • Family of Origin Issues
  • Family Problems
  • Fear
  • Forgiveness
  • Grief, Loss, and Bereavement
  • Habits
  • Helplessness / Victimhood
  • Identity Issues
  • Inadequacy
  • Inattention, Impulsivity, and Hyperactivity (ADHD)
  • Individuation
  • Infidelity / Affair Recovery
  • Internet Addiction
  • Irritability
  • Isolation
  • LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) Issues
  • Life Purpose / Meaning / Inner-Guidance
  • Men's Issues
  • Mood Swings / Mood Disturbance
  • Obsessions and Compulsions (OCD)
  • Panic
  • Phobias
  • Pre-Marital Counseling
  • Relationships and Marriage
  • Self-Care
  • Self-Confidence
  • Self-Criticism
  • Self-Doubt
  • Self-Esteem
  • Self-Harm
  • Self-Love
  • Sensitivity to Criticism
  • Shame
  • Social Anxiety / Phobia
  • Stress
  • Trust Issues
  • Values Clarification
  • Worry
  • Worthlessness
  • Young Adult Issues

Types of Therapy

  • Depth Therapy
  • Emotion Focused Couples Therapy
  • Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy
  • Object Relations
  • Psychoanalysis / Modern Psychoanalysis
  • Psychodynamic

See other therapists in Los Gatos, CA.

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