Margaret Petersen, MFT

Counseling and Psychotherapy


“For one human being to love another human being: that is perhaps the most difficult task that has been given to us, the ultimate, the final problem and proof, the work for which all other work is merely preparation.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

I am a gay-affirmative, straight female who is experienced in working within the gay community. I am committed to ensuring that LGBTQQ individuals receive the services they want and deserve within a safe and welcoming therapeutic relationship. I model respect that comes from the heart for all genders, as well as for those who are transitioning to their authentic gender.  I am also aware and empathic about the many personal, political, and social issues that may affect your daily inner and outer lives.

There is often a different maturational process for someone growing up gay than for someone growing up straight. Learning how to live as straight children, adolescents, and teens before moving out into the world can have an impact on a gay individual’s sense of self-esteem, personality, emotions, sexuality, and even spirituality. When there is prejudice from family or community, young people can grow up with conflicted and confusing messages about themselves.

Intimate relationships can later become clouded by this impact.  Self-compassion often takes a tumble when a person can’t be real during critical developmental stages, and that tumble can translate into relationship distress despite our desires to feel loved and connected.

Though it is not always possible, I believe the optimal therapeutic experience for someone gay is with an out and affirming gay therapist, who has achieved happiness in their own personal self-growth.  Gaylesta, at, is the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Psychotherapist Association of the Greater San Francisco Bay Area.  They are a resource for those seeking therapy, while fostering the wellbeing of the LGBTQQ community.

When location makes it impossible to meet with a gay therapist, or if the therapist nearby is not a good fit, I’m here. I’m devoted to helping all individuals, couples, and families in a therapeutic capacity of seasoned expertise, thanks in part to my own community of friends and colleagues who identify as queer, gender fluid, or transgendered. You deserve to have a life that works!

Please feel free to schedule a consultation to learn more about how we might work together. Call (925) 520-5263 or email me at with any and all questions. I look forward to hearing from you.



"Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life. Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement."
~ Golda Meir