Sara Ouimette (pronounced “we met”) is a licensed psychotherapist located on the Oakland/Berkeley border in California specializing in psychedelic integration, spirituality, cannabis use, highly sensitive people and various forms of trauma. She helps people make the changes necessary to feel more joy in their lives. Often this involves a paradigm shift: a realization that the deeply held fears and beliefs that hold people back can be dispelled.
Sara was first introduced to the potential power of plant medicine during her undergraduate studies at Claremont McKenna College. It was in a class about Amerindian Psychiatry that Sara first was introduced to native peoples’ concept of soul loss and soul retrieval. Inspired by her Peruvian Indian professor, Sara wrote her thesis on Susto (the equivalent of P.T.S.D.), and the ancient South American treatment using ayahuasca with a shaman.
After graduation, Sara worked in a series of counseling positions. Her decade of experience with children and their families now informs her work with adults (and the wounds often left by early experiences). Sara received her M.A. in Integral Counseling Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies and went on to pursue intensive training in psychodynamic psychotherapy at The Psychotherapy Institute in Berkeley, California. Sara is an adherence rater for the Phase 3 studies on MDMA for PTSD at MAPS and is a member of The Society of Cannabis Clinicians.
How I work with clients
People come to see me for individual depth psychotherapy including pre and post-ritual counseling. Primarily, my approach recognizes the benefits and challenges that can come from accessing altered states of consciousness. In my psychotherapy practice, I focus on psychedelic integration, spirituality, highly sensitive people, trauma and PTSD, millennials and late GenXers, anxiety, depression, relationship and dating challenges, chronic pain and physical symptoms, perfectionism, obsessive-compulsive traits and behaviors, and body image concerns. After working with a number of clients struggling to recover from terrifying psychedelic experiences, I developed a specialty working with bad trips. Clients describe me as warm, compassionate, interactive, and non-judgmental.
My style focuses on developing trust so we can enter into a co-exploration of you and what you want and need. My therapeutic frameworks are best described as relational, psychodynamic/psychoanalytic, and transpersonal. To use less jargon, this means that we will spend time exploring your early memories and experiences, and looking closely at how they shape your current reality, relationships and spirituality. Finding compassion for yourself often begins with acknowledging where your wounds came from. In gaining insight into yourself and what causes you the most suffering, you can come to trust and follow your inner guidance system. I’ll also be very interested in what comes up when you’re with me; I work intuitively and will respond to you with presence, interest, and empathy.