Katherine Vah Heerden,LMFT, certified in DBT, trained in EMDR

Katherine Vah Heerden,LMFT, certified in DBT, trained in EMDR

Telehealth Available
Professions: Marriage & Family Therapist
License Status: I'm a licensed professional.
Primary Credential: LMFT - 104666
Billing and Insurance:

I don't currently accept insurance, but I can provide documentation if clients wish to submit to an insurance company for "out of network" benefit coverage

Fees: Free 15 minute consultation!
Firstly, Nido Individual and Family Therapy will work within the “sliding scale” approach.
Sliding Scale Fees are fees for service that are adjusted depending on an individual’s income.
Free Initial Consultation
Evening Availability


Manhattan Beach, California 90266
Irvine, California 92612

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My Approach to Helping

I am a dedicated and versatile licensed therapist with a value for trauma-focused care. Throughout my career, I have navigated the intricate landscapes of psychiatric hospitals, schools, low-income clinics, and dual diagnosis facilities, encountering diverse challenges faced by individuals of all ages and backgrounds. Specializing in anxiety, depression, PTSD, and substance abuse, I skillfully equip my clients with coping tools to navigate life's complexities and rediscover balance.
Trained in EMDR and certified in DBT, I offer personalized therapy tailored to each client's needs. In my practice, I foster a nurturing environment where clients feel heard, understood, and supported without judgment. I create a safe, non-judgmental space where clients can explore and work towards achievable goals.
Driven by a commitment to mental health advocacy, I strive to bridge gaps in therapeutic support and accessibility to resources. If you're apprehensive about seeking therapy, I extend a warm invitation to connect, assuring you a safe space to explore your concerns.

More Info About My Practice

Nido providers are committed to:

Culturally Humble Care
We prioritize understanding the beliefs, backgrounds, and values of our clients — this includes their culture, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexuality, language, communication styles, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors.
Additionally, each therapist makes it a part of their duty to learn from each individual client from their own personal experiences as well as outside training and education. Overall, we clinicians understand that we will never be fully competent about the evolving and dynamic nature of a patient’s experiences.

Trauma Informed Care
We hold regard for our clients’ trauma and its impact on their behavior, mental health, and ability to engage in treatment. We suspect that our clients have a trauma history and we take steps to avoid inadvertently triggering or re-traumatizing the client in treatment. This type of care involves recognizing that trauma has significant effects on people and is often under-recognized and under-reported. We respond in ways that emphasize safety, collaboration, and empowerment by providing education to clients about their trauma symptoms while helping them to feel protected in the process.

Decolonizing Therapy
We bravely and earnestly confront the multi-generational impact that colonization has on all of us. Nido providers acknowledge privileged and oppressed parts of ourselves and admit to the ways our profession has caused a great deal of harm. We take tenacious efforts to end individualistic and pathologizing Eurocentric methods of wellness–one that includes those who have been purposely excluded and historically forgotten.
In treatment, our therapists, strive to uncover and tend to the real roots of the symptoms and suffering from surviving systemic and cultural disasters.

Looking Inward
We invest in ourselves through our own self-reflection. Dedicating time and energy to often feel uncomfortable and acknowledge our own woundings and areas of need within ourselves. We take serious efforts to deepen our understanding of ourselves, remaining humble, and in continuous growth. Whether it is through our own personal therapy, mentorships, or spiritual practices, we find it important to experience what many of our clients do on the receiving end of care and learning.

Depth Oriented Therapeutic Skills
Along with acknowledging the capitalist, imperialist, cis-hetero patriarchal catastrophes our society inflicts, we use a depth and integrative approach to working with clients. We work with and beside our clients in a holistic way, addressing the many ways they can experience healing. This often means community and group support, nourishment, collaborating with other healers, creation, body work, connecting with our past and current selves, education, and beyond. This type of healing takes an investment of time, intense energy, unlearning, and learning, and can be a slow painful process of realization. Peeling the layers back is not for the rushed and the faint of heart.

Ages I Work With

  • Children
  • Teens
  • Adults
  • Elders


  • English

Industries & Communities Served

  • LGBTQ+

Client Concerns I Treat

  • Anxiety
  • Autism Spectrum
  • Child and/or Adolescent Issues
  • Depression
  • Developmental Disorders (Autism, Aspergers, etc.)
  • Dual Diagnosis
  • Gender Dysphoria
  • Identity Issues
  • Inattention, Impulsivity, and Hyperactivity (ADHD)
  • LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) Issues
  • Multicultural Concerns
  • Post Partum Depression
  • Posttraumatic Stress / Trauma
  • Racism
  • Relationships and Marriage

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