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Samana Budhathoki

Samana Budhathoki, MS

Teen & Couples Therapist

I work with teens, adults, couples, and parents facing a range of issues related to depression, grief & loss, self-worth, and cultural struggles. I promise you that you're not alone in this; you've come this far, and there's more to what you have seen/experienced.

Pronouns: She/Her

Location: California,Manhattan Beach,Online

Language: English, Japanese, Hindi & Nepalese

Fee: $175

Sliding Scale: Yes

Insurance: Cigna, Aetna, PPO superbill

Accepting New Clients: Only accepting teen and couple clients at this time


  • Couples
  • Teen


  • Anxiety & Stress Management
  • Burnout & Perfectionism
  • Couples Therapist
  • Creatives & Highly Sensitive Person
  • Trauma & PTSD

Hey all, I’m Samana, and I’m here to help. Take a seat and get comfortable. It’s time to focus on you.

The experiences of your life have started to be too much for you, and despite all the effort you’re putting in to keep going and keep pushing through, you realize that it might not be possible. You’re starting to realize that your trauma isn’t just going to be pushed aside so you can get on with your life.

You feel like you’re constantly being torn down as you fight to do all of the things that are so important in your life, from taking care of your family and your friends to doing your job. Being a good daughter, son, partner, parent, friend, colleague, or any other number of titles you give yourself. And at the same time, you are the one who isn’t being taken care of.

Even though you want to be everything to everyone, you’re starting to realize that it’s just not possible. But the truth is that it was never supposed to be.

It’s time to start taking care of yourself, and that begins with addressing the stress, anxiety, depression, burnout, or trauma that you’ve experienced and just how it’s impacting your life.

I help adults and teens to overcome their past so they can create the future they want most.

My job is not to ‘fix’ you because there’s nothing wrong with you. Instead, my job is to guide you in a way that allows you to come to terms with the trauma that you’ve experienced, whether large or small and better understand how it shapes you into the person you are today and the person that you want to be tomorrow.

Many of my clients have experienced a trauma that shaped their lives, and they are looking for a new way to move forward so that they can take back control of their lives. They are all ages, backgrounds, and demographics, and they are each fighting to take back control of their lives without knowing how.

In the meantime, they are struggling to achieve the things that are most important in their lives. They are struggling to be present and contributing members of their own lives. If this sounds like you, you are not alone. And you don’t have to live that way anymore.

Therapy for Anxiety, Depression, and Stress

Anxiety, depression, and stress wear you down and make it challenging to engage with the people you care about most. They make it difficult for you to achieve the goals and dreams you have for yourself, which means you’re not living your best life.

You may be experiencing prolonged sadness and loneliness. You may feel unable to trust yourself or others. You may struggle to make decisions or struggle with feeling and managing your emotions. Perhaps you are still grieving a loss or are feeling stuck, burnt out, or haunted by memories. No matter what it is, these things are holding you back and pulling you down when you deserve so much more.

Therapy for Trauma

Trauma comes in all types, and what you consider to be trauma may not be the same as what someone else considers it to be. The important thing is what you think and what you feel because you are the one who is living with it.

When we work together, we will explore the experiences you have had that have shaped you, and we will work together to develop a plan to work through your symptoms, feelings, and experiences to make meaningful changes in your life.

It is essential to approach the entirety of your trauma and how it is impacting you because even you may not realize just how much it can hurt your relationship with your loved ones and with yourself. By fully exploring the trauma, we can work on improving your feelings of safety, your connection to your body and the world, your relationships, and even your mood and emotions.

Therapy for BIPOC/Immigrants and LGBTQIA Affirming

You are who you are, and that’s something that you deserve to be proud of. The color of your skin, the culture or ethnicity that you come from, the gender you associate with, the gender you love, none of these things are a reason to feel ashamed, embarrassed, sad, or less than. Rather, they deserve to be celebrated, and you deserve to be celebrated.

As a South Asian Woman myself, I see you and understand you.

Becoming fully who you are is an extraordinary experience, but it is one that many people struggle with on their journey to self-acceptance and a positive future. Exploring just who you are and learning how to not only accept but love that person is the first step in the right direction to achieving a life of fulfillment that will truly be your best life.

Therapy for Highly Sensitive People/Empaths

Headshot of Samana Budhathoki, AMFT

You may have been told that ‘it is what it is’ or ‘nobody’s perfect’ or ‘life isn’t perfect.’ You may have been told to develop a thicker skin to deal with the things that are happening in your life or ‘let it go,’ but none of those little quips actually help.

You are a sensitive person, but that doesn’t mean that you are ‘too sensitive’ or ‘too emotional.’ It means that you feel things intensely, which means you can feel not just the negative things but also the positive. You have the capacity to feel immense joy at the same intensity that you feel immense sadness. You have the capacity to feel immense pride at the same intensity that you feel immense pressure.

Being sensitive is not a negative thing. And there is no such thing as being ‘too’ sensitive or emotional. There is only learning how to deal with the negative emotions that your sensitivity brings about so that you can achieve what you want most for your life.

Reclaim your Life and Your Passion

By working through any of your experiences, traumas, or past hurts, you can develop feelings and skills such as:

  • Self-awareness
  • Understanding
  • Compassion
  • Courage in your relationships (including your relationship with yourself)
  • Hope
  • Openness
  • Self-esteem/self-worth
  • Connection

My Approach: Overcome Your Trauma and Become Who You Were Meant to Be

I am a trauma therapist who can help you to uncover the root of your trauma, anxiety, depression, or other conditions so that you can achieve the life you were meant to live. This includes learning to work through past trauma and learning how to approach the future with a positive outlook and practical coping skills.

We do this by:

  • Slowing down the inner and outer emotional and behavioral processes
  • Drawing connections among life events, including helpful and unhelpful patterns
  • Building practical, personalized, meaningful coping skills through a combination of art and play, mindfulness, Attachment-Focused, Internal Family System (IFS), DBT, CBT, and TF-CBT
  • Changing or restructuring unhelpful or unrealistic beliefs that are keeping you stuck and hurt
  • Processing traumatic events and integrating them into your present
  • Healing the inner child and other areas that have been frozen in time
  • Maintaining healing and growth through creativity and mind-body connection

When you are ready to begin, this process starts with understanding you and where you are beginning your journey, and it continues until you feel that you are prepared. But remember that therapy is not a train trip where you will get on at the station and get off at the end. Rather, therapy is filled with peaks and valleys, highs and lows, progress, and setbacks that will help you to reach toward and continue working for the future that you want most.

  • Assessment & goal setting
  • Building coping skills to stabilize difficult symptoms while gaining insights
  • Collaborating on a proper style/modality of therapy for trauma processing
  • Ongoing therapy and check-ins with goals

Therapy is meant to be a journey toward the life that you want, and I am here to help you on that journey.

I understand the fear of change and uncertainty as I, too, have gone through pain, loss, grief, failure, and the difficulties of living up to the expectations of others and myself. Perhaps that is why we all feel so connected to each other.

Those feelings of pain and discomfort never do get easy, but they can become less burdensome when we share them. Regardless of where we come from, these feelings unite us and cause us to want to be heard, understood, seen, and loved by others.

But I believe that for all the trauma, the stress, the pain, the loss, and the obstacles that we face, there are also plenty of sunrises. There are so many experiences of love, happiness, joy, compassion, and connection that are out there and that we can achieve if we’re only willing to ask for and accept help along the way.

Whatever life and this therapeutic process may look like for you, as my client, I want to walk alongside you, struggle beside you, and grow with you.
If you are ready to make the change in your life, make an appointment today. I would be honored to be a part of your healing journey.

Registered California Board of Behavioral Sciences Number: AMFT 124884
Supervised by Soo Jin Lee, LMFT 118366