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Gay Couples Therapy LOS ANGELES

LGBT COuples Counseling

Is there really much of a difference between"Gay Couples Therapy" in Los Angeles and "Couples Therapy"? Well... yes and no, and there's enough of a difference in my mind to make an entirely different page on it!

As a gay male therapist and licensed marriage and family therapist, I have provided LGBT marriage counseling for nearly 10 years. I know from my experience that couples therapy can often be a really important and valuable benefit to your relationship and addressing issues you want to solve.

 

I am an LGBTQ+ Affirming therapist, which means I have additional training and understanding of the unique dynamics that occur in same-sex or LGBTQ+ communities and relationships.

Take the time to book a free consultation call with me today to find out more about me - let's talk!

Oliver Drakeford: therapy for gay couples and LGBTQ+ couples counseling

WHAT's ON THIS PAGE

family therapy for LGBTQ+ families los angeles

OLIVER DRAKEFORD
AN EXPERIENCED COUPLES THERAPIST

I have worked with LGBTQ couples for 10 years and have seen what an important and valuable benefit  LGBT marriage counseling can have to your relationship.

I am an LGBTQ+ Affirming therapist, which means I have additional training and understanding of the things that are often unique dynamics in same-sex or LGBTQ+ communities and relationships.

Client Stories:
Real Impact of Gay Couples Counseling

"The tools you provided us are working to better help my family during our daily lives and overcome some very difficult situations. GRACIAS!!" Anonymous

"Professional, caring, involved, and effective.  Our family cannot recommend more! "

Anyonymous

"The absolute best. Oliver Drakeford is the most talented and knowledgeable therapist I've ever encountered." Anonymous

MY APPROACH TO Gay Marriage COUNSELING
Tailor Made solutions

My couples counseling approach draws from my love of, and extensive training in psychoanalytic theory from LAISPS, certification in The Gottman Method, Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), and family systems perspectives.

 

It's a holistic approach that works to facilitate better communication, identify relationship patterns, and make meaningful changes.

A WELCOMING OFFICE
Gay couple therapy los angeles

My office is conveniently located in the heart of West Hollywood, close to Culver City, Beverly Hills and Los Angeles where I provide relationship counseling and individual therapy to adults of all ages. Great gay couples therapy in Los Angeles is hard to fine, I'm excited to welcome you to my practice.

I also offer online sessions for residents of California. I do have a limited number of sliding scale sessions available, so my fees range from $185 - $250

NEW:
RELATIONSHIP MAPPING

Find out more about our couples intensive experience, 'Relationship Mapping', a relationship workshop designed for busy couples

LGBT COUPLES COUNSELING NEAR ME: LOS ANGELES | WeST HOLLYWOOD

On the one hand, relationships are complicated whether you're heterosexual or not and there's research to show us this. In theory, a heterosexual licensed therapist could help you work through whatever challenges you are having in your relationship at the moment, and there's no right or wrong choice.

Because of my many years working with the LGBTQ community as a couples and family therapist, Clinical Director, and educator, I am sensitive to recognizing the unique ways that societal, cultural, and personal challenges members of the LGBTQ+ community face. Did you know that research into LGBTQ+ couples shows us that while they might have some of the same challenges as opposite-sex partners, they also have more strengths - like calming down faster after an argument and a better sense of humor?

My goal is to create a comfortable, safe place where couples feel they can talk through these problems or challenges. It's a secure space where issues can be openly addressed and resolved if they need to be, without anyone having to explain who they are or how they impact us.

 

Below are some of the common areas that gay couples may experience that counselors who do not recognize the challenges LGBTQ people have, might miss.

couples therapy for gay couples and lgbtq+ community

 

If you are not certain whether you need couples therapy or have some reservations about going, you and your partner may find this assessment helpful to learn more about your relationship and what you want out of therapy.

 

It's formatted around an evidence-based Relationship Satisfaction assessment that is popular in clinical psychology and has been deemed appropriate for LGBTQ+ relationships and gay couples. Scores below 85 indicate that your relationship might have some significant issues that could be addressed in counseling.

 

INTERACTIVE QUIZ: DO WE NEED COUPLES THERAPY?

gay couples therapy los angeles

How I work:
marriage counseling for gay couples near me

LGBTQ affirmative therapists like myself will use a variety of couples counseling methods to address a wide range of mental health concerns. I primarily use psychodynamic therapy as a core aspect of gay relationship therapy, to help people share how they feel with each other. I have honed my role as a clinical director and clinical supervisor by incorporating techniques from the Gottman Method, Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), to Imago Therapy. However I modify the tools to be more sensitive to LGBQ needs, as well as to the couple who come to see me.

The skills I utilize in sessions help me work with clients and the person they love in a variety of issues in therapy, including:

1. Relationship Dynamics:

Just like any other partnership, same-sex relationships also face challenges related to communication, trust, and intimacy. An important component in therapy is helping partners build and maintain healthy relationship dynamics, fostering effective dialogues and learning to communicate effectively. I address specific issues such as power imbalances, age differences, conflict resolution skills and income differences that sometimes occur in the gay community. I also work with LGBTQ+ families - click here to read more

2. Intimacy and Sexual Health:

Intimacy and a vibrant sex life is a vital aspect of interpersonal relationships. I work with people to explore their sexual struggles and emotional needs, addressing any concerns or challenges related to intimacy, sexuality, gender identity, and gender-non-conforming individuals and identities. We focus on enhancing communication, trust, and connection, fostering a fulfilling and satisfying intimate life. LGBTQ-affirming therapy with a gay therapist will take into consideration what meaningful relationships mean to each partner.

3. Addiction & Substances

Many LGBTQ+ partners may face challenges related to mental concerns in terms of addiction and substance abuse. I specialize in working with people who are dealing with these issues o, providing support, guidance, and resources to help them overcome addiction and build a healthier and more stable relationship. We can address issues such as codependency, anxiety, depression, anxiety-enabling behaviors, and developing healthy coping mechanisms.

4. Conflict

Conflict is a normal part of any relationship, but it can be particularly challenging for LGBTQ+ folk who have experienced trauma or violence growing up. I have extensive professional experience providing services to couples and enjoy helping them to navigate and resolve conflict in a healthy and constructive manner. Together we will explore underlying issues, identify triggers, and develop effective strategies and skills for managing and resolving conflicts and finding acceptance in differences.

5. CNM Consensual Non-Monogamy, Polygamy

Consensual non-monogamy (CNM) and polygamy are relationship styles that involve multiple partners or relationships. I provide services and support for partners who are exploring or considering their sexuality and thinking about exploring these relationship styles. Mental health professionals such as myself should be able to help discuss topics such as boundaries, jealousy, and ethical considerations, helping people navigate these complex dynamics in a healthy and consensual manner that is free from stress.

6. Kink Friendly Practice

In my private practice, I am kink-friendly and provide a safe and non-judgmental space for clients to have discussions around sexuality, sexual orientation, and kink or BDSM relationships. I offer support and guidance on topics such as communication, consent, negotiation, and exploring boundaries in a consensual and safe manner. My goal is to help anyone in a relationship foster a healthy and fulfilling kink dynamic within their relationship.

More Reading For Couples 
 

5 Reasons Why Couples See A Couples and Family Therapist In Private Practice

- The Unment Emotional Needs Worksheet by a marriage and family therapist

my approach

An Affirmative Practice: GAY COUPLES THERAPY IN LOS ANGELES & WEST HOLLYWOOD

 

I offer LGBTQ-affirmative therapy to adults and couples of all orientations in my office in West Hollywood, on Santa Monica Blvd, and have availability during the week in the daytime and evenings. Alternatively, I offer online couples therapy to anyone who resides in California. Most of my clients like to see me in person and travel from as far as Culver City, Hollywood and Sherman Oaks.

office
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The benefits of LGBTQ+ Friendly TherapY, OR GAY COUPLES THERAPY

1. Improved Communication

Effective communication is the cornerstone of any successful relationship, and therapy can definitely help with any communication issues in non-heterosexual relationships. Mental health professionals who specialize in LGBTQ-affirmative therapy will understand the unique dynamics that may arise around sexual identity or in same-sex relationships. They can provide a safe space free from judgments where both partners can express themselves openly and honestly. Therapy can help people develop better listening skills, express their needs and desires effectively, and resolve conflicts healthily and constructively.

2. Strengthened Connection and Intimacy Issues

Counseling can help people in gay or lesbian relationships deepen their emotional bond and strengthen their connection. A skilled therapist can guide partners in exploring and understanding their individual and shared life experiences, creating a sense of empathy and mutual support. By exploring each partner's feelings, fears, and dreams, therapy can foster a deeper level or emotional intimacy that allows for a more fulfilling and satisfying relationship. In my clinical experience, queer individuals often have a significant amount of minority stress, sometimes compounded with trauma or religious trauma, that has to be understood as part of their emotional responses to emotional intimacy.

3. Relationship Satisfaction and Well-Being

Research has shown that therapy can provide you with a comprehensive understanding of any relationship issues and significantly improve relationship satisfaction and overall well-being. A therapist can help partners identify and address any underlying issues to gain a deeper understanding of the roots of the relationship challenges that may be impacting their relationship. This could include addressing past trauma, internalized homophobia, or societal pressures that may affect self-esteem or relationship dynamics that prevent you from having a deeper connection in relationships. 

OTHER LGBTQ RESOURCES

If you're in Los Angeles or West Hollywood and seeking LGBTQ+ therapist or a gay male therapist you have several options at your disposal. Below are some ideas and resources for both couples and other therapists in Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles LGBT Center specializes in psychotherapy for LGBTQ+ individuals and their families/allies. Their inclusive process centers on acceptance and welcomes everyone, making it a go-to destination for LGBTQ+ therapy in the city.

ACTS' mission is to bring high-quality free telehealth services to the Los Angeles community regardless of background while providing future therapists from Antioch University supervised real-world experience. Their LGBTQ+ specialization is a great fit for gay/lesbian couples or anyone in the LGBTQ rainbow looking for healing and an understanding therapist.

The Gottman Institute brings a research based approach to relationships, their website is packed with tools, courses and ideas on how to improve and work on your relationship with your partner. This is not particularly well aimed at gay/non-binary / lesbian couples but the information and tools are solid despite being focused more on heterosexual relationships.

Some books and other resources you might find useful in your pursuit of self discovery, and healthy, successful relationship dynamics. Click here

Worksheets and
Activities

A selection of interesting worksheets and activities you could try at home to enhance your relationship and put the skills you learn into practice.

If once a week therapy doesn't seem like enough, consider a retreat or couples 'intensive' - ask me for more ideas in addition to this if you need.

Enhancing Mental Health for the LGBTQ Community: Meet Oliver Drakeford

gay couples therapist los angeles

At Oliver Drakeford Therapy in West Hollywood, we understand the unique challenges faced by the LGBTQ community, particularly same sex relationships.. As a gay man, I focus on providing inclusive and affirming therapy services and a commitment to results.

With nearly a decade of experience as a Marriage and Family Therapist, Oliver specializes in working in the LGBTQ+ community and with same-sex couples, individuals and families, addressing issues such as anxiety, depression, addiction, and family dynamics. His educational background includes working at the Maple Counseling Center in Beverly Hills, and certification from the Los Angeles Institute and Association for Psychoanalytic Studies (LAISPS) have equipped him with the skills to navigate the complexities of LGBTQ relationships and identities.

At Oliver Drakeford Therapy, your privacy and confidentiality are paramount. We adhere to the highest ethical standards, ensuring that all information shared during therapy sessions is kept strictly confidential. Oliver creates a non-judgmental, safe space and safe environment where clients can openly explore their thoughts, feelings, and experiences without fear of discrimination.

Oliver offers a range of services tailored to the needs of queer people, including same-sex couples therapy, family therapy, and individual counseling. Whether you're struggling with relationship issues, coming out, or navigating the complexities of your identity, Oliver provides compassionate support and guidance every step of the way.

About Me
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