Meridee Rilen, PsyD, LP, Owner

meridee@affinitypsych.com

Hello! I’m Dr. Meridee Rilen, owner of Affinity Psychological Services. I’m a psychologist, licensed in both Minnesota and California, where I offer individual therapy and couples therapy. I hold an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Yale University and a doctorate in Clinical Psychology from The California School of Professional Psychology. In addition to private practice, I’ve held clinical positions at Stanford University and Kaiser Permanente Medical Center.

My practice serves a wide variety of issues and populations, though I have special interest and expertise in the areas of sexuality and gender, executive leadership, positive psychology, and relationship work (with extensive training in multiple approaches to couples therapy including Gottman, EFT, and RLT).

How I Work

I’ll admit it – I am a therapy nerd. My Kindle and Audible libraries are chock full of books representing a range of thoughts and theories on self-improvement, and there is good stuff to be had in all of them. So you will find that I have an approach more in line with: “If it works, use it. If it doesn’t work, let it go.” That means I am continually learning about new approaches in order to offer you a wide range of information and perspectives. There is no right way, and there are only a few definitively wrong ways. I wholeheartedly believe this about so many things in life, and my therapy approach is no different.

Not everything works for every person at any time, though. That’s what I’m here for – to help you figure out what, specifically, will be useful to you in this exact situation in this exact moment of your life. You are a capable, successful human who is used to figuring things out on your own. I understand that it’s new and stressful and uncomfortable to recognize that you need different strategies right now. My job is to work with you to: first, figure out what needs to be different; second, understand why it needs to be different; and third, learn how to make it different. With the right tools and information, I believe you are capable of reaching your goals, and we will make sure you believe that as well!

What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I am chatty, a quick thinker, and can be annoyingly (but not unrealistically!) optimistic. I think both systemically (big picture) and systematically (details), which means I will quickly help you to put the pieces together so that you can see both the forest and the trees. If you want to feel challenged and pushed towards your goals, I am a therapist that gives lots of authentic, informed feedback to help you get there. I will see the good in you and be compassionate about your struggles while holding you fully accountable to the changes you need to make in order to get where you want to be.

I believe that we can always be better, and when you’re my client, I am invested in your process of being better. If these characteristics sound appealing to you, then there’s a good chance you and I will work well together.

Issues I Treat:

  • anxiety and stress
  • self-confidence, self-esteem, and assertiveness
  • sexuality and gender exploration
  • dating challenges and issues arising from actively seeking a relationship
  • parenting conflicts
  • gender transition, including letter-writing for hormones or surgery
  • break-ups
  • career development and navigating the work-life ratio
  • depression

Populations I Serve:

  • individuals adults and couples
  • managers, executives, entrepreneurs, and business owners
  • “type A” personalities
  • LGBTQI communities
  • couples with a partner who is transitioning
  • new parents
  • couples in conflict
  • therapists and mental health professionals
  • open, poly, and non-monogamous relationships
  • undergraduate and graduate students
  • gifted and talented individuals
  • commuters and others needing teletherapy services

Professional background:

Education

  • Doctorate in Clinical Psychology – California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University, San Francisco
  • BA in Psychology – Yale University

Trainings

  • Gottman Method Couples Therapy – Level 3
  • Externship in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT)
  • Relational Life Therapy (Terry Real) – Level 1
  • Discernment Counseling
  • Telehealth for Mental Health Professionals

Previous Employment

  • Stanford University Counseling and Psychological Services
  • Post-Doctoral Residency at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center
  • Pre-Doctoral Internship at University of the Pacific

Licensure

  • Minnesota: LP #5842
  • California: PSY #23007