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Areas of Focus:

  • Stress, Anxiety, Grief and Depression

  • Assertiveness and Communication

  • Changing Careers/Retirement

  • Cultural Identity Formation

  • Adult Children of Immigrant Parents

  • Childhood, Adult and Intergenerational Trauma

  • Structural, Institutional and Assimilation Trauma

Approach and Background:


Sessions are meant to meet you where you are in the 'here and now' rather than following a prescribed format. Sometimes current events or new ideas can awaken and link to things already inside of us. Sometimes doing less and striving less allows us the room to reckon with the things inside of us that have been waiting to be seen for a long time.

I practice from a relational and intersubjective stance in contemporary psychoanalysis that understands that you and I mutually influence each other; this space of interplay is a main location for our work. With a liberation and anti-oppression stance, I aim to offer interpretations from what emerges in our session to enhance our thinking together, not as an ultimate authority and not to take away from your process of understanding yourself; hence, I always invite you to feel free to clarify otherwise or disagree. 


I am also informed by attachment, trauma, critical race, decolonial, feminist, queer, gender, and social justice theories. This means that my clinical base is psychoanalytic because of its methodology of deep listening and its frameworks that help to understand how we are psychically formed in relationship to other people and phenomena. But like all theories and disciplines it requires continuous evolution and critique for ways it will inevitably fall short of being inclusive to all, thus I am a constant student in other disciplines where psychoanalytic theory has yet to develop. Additionally, I implement skills based trauma and mindfulness practices when needed.

Korean American therapist Deborah Kim is smiling, she wears black eyeglasses and a blue sweater.


  • Analytic Candidate, Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California (PINC), 2021 -present

  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, California (LMFT#105935)

  • The Psychotherapy Institute, Berkeley, CA (2-year psychodynamic training certificate), 2018

  • The Wright Institute, M.A. 2015

  • M.I.T., M.Arch 2001

  • Columbia University, B.A. 1995



  • Community Psychoanalysis Track, The Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California 

  • BIPOCanalysis collective

  • ​Psychoanalysis for Social Responsibility, Section IX, Society of Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic Psychology (Division 39), of the American Psychological Association

  • The Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California, Candidate, Focus On Committee Member

  • The Psychotherapy Institute, Board Member at Large (2018-2020)

  • Northern California Society of Psychoanalytic Psychology 

  • California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

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