Avis has helped hundreds of clients create happier, healthier lives. She works with individuals and with families, recognizing that many of the problems that people bring to therapy are embedded in past and present relationship patterns.  She helps couples repair damaged relationships so that partners can better understand and respond to their mates and develop stronger bonds and a deeper connection with each other. She helps clients stop self-harming and addictive patterns, own and express their feelings, and learn to accept and respect themselves and others.  Avis has particular expertise in helping people recover from addictive eating patterns  -- emotional eating, undereating, overeating, binging -- and from the relationship patterns that contribute to eating problems. 

As a therapist, Avis is warm and compassionate and engages clients to explore and articulate what is true for them. She believes that within each of us is the desire to heal and grow, and that with guidance and support, we can achieve a way of being that honors who we are and how we want to be.

Avis has written articles, book chapters and books on eating issues and addiction. She contributed the chapter, "Through the Looking Glass" to the book, Extraordinary Women Who Freed Themselves From Food & Weight Obsession. Her first published book is now in it’s second edition as Dying to Please: Anorexia, Treatment and Recovery. The California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists bestowed upon her the Clark Vincent award for “literary contribution to the profession of Marriage and Family Therapy." Most recently, she co-authored with Larry Fritzlan the book, My Addicted Child: Codependency, Enabling and the Road to Recovery, which describes family-based therapy for treatment of addictive behaviors.

Avis brings to her work the wisdom and skill she has acquired in her years as a therapist as well as her personal experience of recovery from an eating disorder.  She can guide you and your loved ones, one step at a time, to build healthy and satisfying lives. Avis sees clients in her Corte Madera office, located in Marin County just north of the Golden Gate Bridge.  

Avis has the heart of an artist. When she’s not transforming lives through therapy, writing, and speaking, you can find her growing dahlias, painting watercolors, and designing unique wire-wrap jewelry.  She is happily  married and lives with her husband and part-time dog in Mill Valley, California.

 

Praise For Avis...

I learned I had a life and a right to go on. It was safe to talk about my feelings — how bad it was. It felt safe to express my hopelessness and to learn that healing can take time. Talking about these situations gave me the strength to be more giving and to set limits. Getting guidance from you really helped. Of all the things I did, working with Avis strengthened me the most and helped me the most.
— Pam C., Livermore, California
I found I could stop kicking myself. Perhaps there were things I needed to look at, but I wasn’t a bad person. A support system is an important piece of treatment. I’ve said over and over again that a multi-sided approach is necessary — the medical, psychiatric and family. I truly appreciate the contribution you made to our family’s recovery.
— N.W., Bay Area Psychologist
It was good for me to sort out what was about me and what was about others. It’s about family dynamics, but there wasn’t any horrifying thing I’d done. Moms soak up a lot of guilt — men don’t have the body image stuff. Moms need extra help. It’s really important for moms to get help. Most people don’t understand anorexia so the world has a hard time with it. The fact that you had experience being anorexic was really special. You helped me to understand.
— B.E., Walnut Creek, California
 

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