p Raphael A Barker, AMFT

Raphael A. Barker

Marriage and Family Therapist and Somatic Experiencing Practitioner

Berkeley, CA
Remote Sessions Available

What I do know is that we become traumatized when our ability to respond to a perceived threat is in some way overwhelmed. This inability to adequately respond can impact us in obvious ways, as well as ways that are subtle.
- Peter Levine

Overwhelming events can be life-changing. We may feel as if the person we knew ourselves to be, has been permanently changed. Or we don't even know who we are meant to be. In many ways, this is true: adverse events alter us. As a result, we may feel anxious, confused, chronically ambivalent and ashamed. We may blame ourselves. We may blame others. We may find ourselves "re-playing" our past over and over again in how we respond to our partners; our life. We get "triggered" by small things. We have a hard time being intimate with others. We can't seem to form new habits; align with goals. We feel handicapped and negatively compare ourselves to others, eventually alienating ourselves because we don’t get how other people can live such normal lives. And yet... trauma and overwhelm can be transformed into increased resilience and new capacities. We have gifts and wisdom that are uniquely ours that can use some encouragement to emerge. I have a strong conviction that with the right conditions, we can heal from adversity. If fact, we can thrive. My aim is to provide a safe relationship that can support the body's intrinsic capacity for healing and the mind’s ability to make new meaning.

For those who appreciate the terminology, my approach is humanistic, existential and trauma-informed. When appropriate, I incorporate somatics, EMDR, mindfulness, EFT, parts-work and creative exploration into therapy sessions. I look forward to meeting you!

I treat:

About me

It is never too late the be what you might have been - George Elliot

Like many of you, I have been on a complex but rewarding journey from day one, trying to transform the challenges of both nature and nurture into a life worth living. As well as doing a lot of my own "work", I have completed a Master’s degree in counseling psychology at Meridian University. I am a graduate from the Somatic Experiencing Institute, am EMDR-trained and am on the leadership team for El Puente Dorado. I’ve had a long standing meditation practice that started when I was working on my undergraduate degree in Buddhist and Western Psychology. I have had the honor to sit with and learn from amazing teachers; diving into the martial and movement arts, acting, writing, deep meditative practices and powerful psychological techniques.

I was born to a mother who is an immigrant to this country, and I have lived in Europe for nine years. I have an enduring compassion for the outsider and for those trying to make the best out of difficult circumstances.

I also have a long history in the performing arts and thus love to support creative people and remove the obstacles that prevent us from being the person that we are meant to be.

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