Dona Laressa Desmond, PhD, LMFT

Couples Therapy, PreMarital & Marriage Counseling

Couples Therapy, Marriage & PreMarital Counseling

desmondpsychology@gmail.com

27 years experience helping Couples in the LA area

Santa Monica 90404                                            Woodland Hills 91364                                              Culver City 90066    

310 281 3051

Who is Dona Laressa Desmond PhD, LMFT?

I specialize in helping Couples and Individuals in the LA area. I work with most aspects of relationship, from attraction to dating to living together to engagement to marriage. With Individuals I help with anxiety, distress, emotional struggles and changing unhealthy patterns. Private practice since 1993. I see clients at my offices in West LA, Woodland Hills, Culver City, Santa Monica as well as via FaceTime and phone-sessions. I am also a Certified Professional Coach.

License 

CA LMFT 29944

Degrees, Specialty Trainings & Certifications

Emergency Medical Technician   Medical Center Pre-Hospital Care, UCLA

Masters/Doctorate                        Antioch/AU, Psychology & Human Sciences

Couples Communication              Mentor: Dr. Alex French, UCLA

Relationship Dynamics                 Mentor: Dr. Alex French, UCLA

Anger Management                       1 year internship at SCCC

Trauma Training

Trauma Recovery                           Certified in the Mitchell Technique, UC San Diego

Red Cross Certification                 Early Stage Disaster Management

Red Cross Certification                 Crisis Debriefing for Emergency Services Personnel

Red Cross Certification                 Crisis Intervention for Disaster Workers/First Responders

Teaching

Crossroads School                          Teaching Intern Life Skills Program

FBI, LA Bureau                               Taught workshop "Depression, Impact & Prevention."

FBI, LA Bureau                               Taught workshop "Stress in the Workplace."

Teaching Abroad

Center for Citizen Initiatives         Taught "American Psychology Techniques" to European

                                                           psychologists, psychiatrists & middle school teachers

Coach Training Certifications

Certified Professional Coach          College Executive Coaching, Santa Barbara, CA.

ICF                                                     International Coach Federation

Relationship Coach                          Coaching for Couples

Technical Consultant for Film and TV

TV                                                       Oprah, Episode on "Infidelity"

TV                                                       Naomi Judd Talk Show Pilot

Film                                                    Bette Midler, Woody Allen,"Scenes From A Mall"

Guest Therapist on Radio and TV

CNN News                                         "Treatment of Panic Disorder "

KRLA Radio                                      "Issues of Life: Your Relationships "

Fox TV                                               "Impact of OCD Parents on Children "

MTV                                                   "Effect of TV Violence on Teens "

NBC                                                    "Crisis Therapy for Families Impacted by 9/11 "

Additional Skill Sets

Emotional Intelligence: Testing & Enhancement, ( Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Method)

Affiliations

American Association of Integrative Medicine

California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

Association for Traumatic Stress Specialists

International Critical Incident Stress Foundation

International Association for Relationship Research

What makes me unique as a therapist?

There are several unique qualities that I bring to my clinical practice. One interesting aspect is the way that I began my practice in the Los Angeles area. I launched my practice by doing house calls and field work with clients. The population that I initially served was those who were homebound due to PTSD or anxiety disorders such as agoraphobia.

Their fragile emotional state was such that they couldn't leave their home to attend therapy.

During those home sessions, of course, it was often the case that other family members would be present, usually a spouse. It became efficient to include them in the sessions and via that I began to understand the contagious nature of emotions inside a relationship. As this process evolved I branched out in deeper theoretical and practical ways for helping couples.

The other population that I did field work with was people who had developed specific phobias such as flying, driving, elevators, etc. I went with these clients and did therapy with them in such places as airports, on planes, trains, freeways, in malls, hotels, grocery stores, etc. I accompanied them through their systematic desensitization as they regained their freedom to move normally in the world.

I saw couples at my office 3 days a week and did house calls and field work 2 days a week for 10 years. The range of my client base extended from Santa Clarita to Santa Monica. My clientele included housewives, celebrities, law enforcement, first responders, executives and business owners. Eventually, I also went abroad and taught American Psychology techniques to European Psychologists.

For over 2 decades now I have specialized in Couples Therapy. I'll be happy to apply all the areas of my expertise to assist you.

Couples Communication

Couples Therapy

Positive Problem Solving for Couples

Marriage Counseling 

Fertility & Pregnancy issues

IVF Support

Infidelity Recovery for Couples

Marriage Rescue & Program

Relationship Struggles with Intimacy

Coaching for Men

Individual Counseling for Men

Anxiety

Commitment Reboot

Premarital Counseling

Sex Therapy for Couples

Intimacy Reboot for Couples

End Power Struggles

Co-Dependency 

Co-Habitation Adjustment 

Anger Management

Arguing

Trauma Support

ADD/ADHD  partners

Individual Therapy for Women

Resentment Recovery 

Avoid Break-ups

I definitely do work with couples who are in recovery from substance

abuse/addictions as long as there is at least 1 year clean & sober & an

ongoing participation in recovery such as AA, etc.

Suicide

Self-Harm

Domestic Violence

Active Drug Addiction

Active Alcoholism

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder

Legal Issues

Divorce

Child custody issues

Dept of Child Family Services issues

Paranoid Personality

Rape

Bi-Polar Disorder

Eating Disorders

Gambling problems

Sexual addiction

Internet porn addiction

Schizophrenia

Smoking addiction

Compulsive Shopping

Crime related issues

Sex offenders

Stalking

Children

Adolescents

💛 Issues that I don't treat 💛

Please note: I do not treat suicide or domestic violence or any issues involving the legal system. If you are having any kind of urgent situation please call 911 or your local police. The phone number for the suicide prevention hotline is  800 273 8255 or https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org

💛 Issues that I work with & specialize in 💛

I don't work with clients who are in danger of harming themselves or others. Additionally, I don’t counsel any issues that involve the legal system.

About Me

$40 discount on video sessions during COVID

Couples Therapy Los Angeles 90066, 90404, 91364, 90025, 90028, 90026, 90024, 90036, 90046, 90049, 90292, 91403, 91302
Couples Therapy Los Angeles 90066, 90404, 91364, 90025, 90028, 90026, 90024, 90036, 90046, 90049, 90292, 91403, 91302
Couples Therapy Los Angeles 90066, 90404, 91364, 90025, 90028, 90026, 90024, 90036, 90046, 90049, 90292, 91403, 91302