Dr. Michael Pariser, Psy.D.

Who I Am

I am a licensed clinical psychologist with offices in West Los Angeles and Marina del Rey. I am passionately committed to relieving your suffering and to facilitating your long-term personal development through deep exploration and sustained empathy. 

I counsel individual adults who are struggling with painful and frustrating emotional issues, including depression, anxiety, relationship problems, and life transitions. I also facilitate challenging journeys of personal growth and self-discovery. 

In addition, I am a certified psychoanalyst, which means that I focus intensely on the underlying emotional dynamics that are the driving force behind your conscious thoughts and feelings, as well as your overt behavior. 

How I Work

I believe that no two people’s emotional lives are structured in precisely the same way, so your treatment will always be tailored to your individual needs. These needs – for living a good life and relating well to others – depend upon the smooth functioning of your emotional system.

Emotions serve many critical functions for all of us, including evaluation, motivation, and communication. Without them, we would be literally incapable of navigating our way around our world. 

Right now, you may be thinking, “But I have emotional issues, and I need to get rid of my problematic feelings.” It is not the emotions themselves that are the issue, however. It is the way they are being unconsciously blocked, so that healthy emotions are not available for proper use. 

When you come in and talk about what is bothering you and what doesn’t work in your life, I work to bring to light the unconscious emotional organizing principles and all the ways they function in your interpersonal world. In particular, we look for rigid emotional rules that create obstacles to adaptive, healthy functioning, and we work to loosen their iron grip. 

As a result, you will have greater freedom to make healthier and more adaptive choices for your life. You can then become that emotionally strong and socially resilient person you have always wanted to be, one who will thrive and succeed in the world.

What You Can Expect from Me

  • A safe and comfortable therapeutic environment; an atmosphere of respect and compassion in which you get the help you need to face formerly unbearable and frightening feelings.
  • Insight, empathy, support, and understanding. 
  • A collaborative process. You help design a treatment that works for you.
  • Emphasis and expertise in emotional life. 
  • Honesty about what I see. I believe you will benefit most by hearing the truth.  
  • Attention to early childhood traumas and family dynamics which replay themselves in our present lives, at the same time without sacrificing the present for the sake of the past. 
  • Continual and collaborative monitoring of the process, to determine its effectiveness and make any necessary adjustments. 
  • A free use of creativity and imagination, rather than a formulaic approach that comes from a textbook.
  • Care and concern throughout the process. Therapy can be difficult and painful, but I will do my best to see that it is not any more so than is absolutely necessary.