Relationship Counseling & Marriage Therapy in the East Bay


Welcome to The Couples Center in the East Bay! As relationship counselors and marriage therapists in Oakland and Berkeley, we specialize in helping couples like you navigate relationship challenges, helping you create a fulfilling, passionate relationship.

Marriage therapy is one of those decisions that can change your life. Whether you’re just starting out or have been together for many years, relationship counseling and marriage therapy can support you in creating a closer connection, improving your communication, revitalizing your sexual life, and much more.

Our qualified counselors have ongoing training and expertise in marriage therapy and relationship counseling approaches. Experience also shows that couples counseling can be very effective even in a short period of time. Too often we see couples who wait too long to get the help they need, so we encourage you to contact us today!

You can have the relationship YOU want

  • Relationship specialists: We help both individuals and couples improve their relationships.
  • Focused process: When you work with a specialist progress can happen quite fast.
  • Engaging & interactive: Within a warm, supportive environment we offer direct feedback on how you can make your relationship better.
  • Finding a good fit: It is important for you to feel comfortable with your therapist. We’ll do our best to find you the counselor who best fits your needs and situation.

Insurance questions for marriage therapy or relationship counseling? Answers are found here.

Meet the


  • Io Bones, couples therapist in San Francisco
    Our partner’s often seem to have a knack for triggering our most tender and vulnerable wounds. This is what makes arguing with our partners so potentially painful, but it also means that our relationships offer us a profound opportunity for developing more empowerment, security, and connectedness. Io works with couples to help them take advantage of their challenges as opportunities to come into deeper contact with each other, and also themselves. Read More

    Io Bones, MFTi
  • Louis Bernstein, MFT, Walnut Creek area couples counselor
    Louis offers you a safe, compassionate, and non-judgmental space where the two of you can heal old wounds. A place to learn new ways of communication and relating so as to be truly heard and understood by your partner. Through a collaborative and mindful process, Louis will assist you in co-creating a renewed connection, trust, and intimacy with one another. Read More

    Louis Bernstein, MFT
  • Sergio Rodriguez-Castillo, MFTi, Berkeley couples counselor
    Sergio is a bilingual (Spanish) and bicultural psychotherapist with more than 20 years of experience as a therapist, consultant, and coach, helping couples, families, and organizations to face personal, existential, relational or systemic crises. Sergio is not only a psychotherapist but a trainer of psychotherapists, teaching couples counseling at the California Institute of Integral Studies. As an expert on relationships, communication skills and couples in crises such as lack of sexual desire, infidelity, anger issues and lack of commitment. He uses his experience to help his clients to get more out of life, to work and love intensely. Read More

    Sergio Rodriguez-Castillo, MFTi
  • Raia Kogan, MFT, Berkeley couples counselor
    Raia believes that a deeply nourishing and satisfying relationship is possible even when there has been past wounding and trauma and feels continually honored to share in and support deeply intimate and tender moments with the couples she serves. Raia has been working with individuals and couples for 8 years and is experienced in working with diverse couples including LQBTQI, monogamous, and polyamorous couples. Read More

    Raia Kogan, MFT
  • Eitan Saenger, MFTi, Berkeley couples counselor
    Eitan is passionate about intimate relationships. He has a warm, interactive, and effective counseling style. He offers practical tools to deal with the challenges that committed relationships often present. With an empathic approach, he works toward creating a safe environment that supports each partner to communicate authentically. Read More

    Eitan Saenger, MFTi
  • Taneille Smith, MFT, Berkeley couples counselor
    Taneille knows firsthand how challenging it can be for a couple to reach out and seek help from a counselor. Having been in couples therapy herself, she can empathize with what it’s like to be sitting on “the hot seat.” To reveal what goes on behind closed doors can feel scary, but the benefits of this kind of vulnerability are tremendous. When a couple risks this kind of vulnerability, the payoff can be so much more than they had imagined. Read More

    Taneille Smith, MFT
  • Erika Bennett, MFTi, couples counselor in San Francisco and Berkeley
    Erika approaches the therapeutic relationship from a somatic (meaning "of the body") orientation and taking a 360-degree point of view of who you are emotionally, intellectually, physically, sexually, energetically, spiritually, materially, cosmologically (you name it!) with genuine curiosity and acceptance. In working with you as a couple, we explore the dynamics of what makes your relationship tick and what keeps it out of balance. Read More

    Erika Bennett, MFTi
  • Liron Cohen, couples therapist in Berkeley, CA
    Being in a relationship means sharing yourself with another person. It means to connect, to open your heart, to love. Every relationship has good times and difficult times, but when it gets out of balance, as a couple you might experience communication challenges, mistrust, infidelity, sexual challenges, long periods of anger, loss of intimacy, cultural issues, parenting challenges, or feeling more like roommates. All of these are signs that something is missing in your connection. Read More

    Liron Cohen, MFTi
  • Danielle Saunders, couples therapist in Berkeley
    Danielle brings over 14 years of experience to couples counseling. Her unique approach incorporates communication skills and relational-somatic and mindfulness-based techniques. Danielle sees couples with a large range of issues, including reclaiming sexual passion, coparenting/blended families, and recovery from trauma/history of abuse. Read More

    Danielle Saunders, MFT
  • Berkeley Marriage counseling
    Marriage Counseling in Berkeley, CA
    Our Berkeley couples therapy team includes licensed Marriage and Family Therapists with extensive experience working with couples. All of our marriage counselors were chosen for their skills and expertise as well as passion for working with couples. They see clients in various locations in Berkeley and Oakland. Having a compassionate, objective third party can be invaluable for your relationship. Our counselors can give you feedback and advice on improving communication, enhancing your sexual connection, and remembering what brought you together in the first place!

    Marriage counseling Berkeley team

Relationships are difficult. We’re here to


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    What to expect from marriage counseling

    If you’re coming to couples therapy for the first time, you probably have some questions about it. Here are some of the basics, with links for further resources: In relationship counseling, you’ll meet with one of our East Bay marriage therapists once a week for 50 to 60 minutes, or sometimes every other week for 75 to 80 minutes. Most of the time the sessions will be together with you and your partner, but occasionally your therapist will meet with each one of you individually. You’ll meet in one of our East Bay counseling offices, depending on the relationship counselor assigned to you. In the first marriage therapy session, your therapist will get some background information from you and will clarify your goals for working together. Once your goals are clarified, your marriage counselor will work with both of you to identify the strengths of your relationship and how to build on them, and also the challenges you have and how to understand them. Every couple has one or a few underlying patterns that cause most of their challenges. Once you identify them and know how to overcome them, your relationship can become much easier to manage and a lot more intimate. If you have specific questions, our East Bay marriage counselors will be happy to have an initial phone consultation with you. For more information, read what to expect from marriage counseling or our counseling FAQs.