Alyson “Aly” Dearborn is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in California and Oregon (LMFT#45462; #T2025). Certified as a Sex Addiction Therapist and guided by Polyvagal Theory, Feminist Theory, and Attachment-Focused EMDR approaches to clinical work, Aly offers neuro-affirmative therapy and consultation for adult women.

Her practice is online and she does not treat couples, children, or families.

I believe all beings in nature have an innate biological intelligence and aim to help clients explore and deepen a connection with their own inner wisdom through the lens of polyvagal theory.


With 19 years of post-graduate clinical experience working in mental health with a focus on the treatment of complex post-traumatic stress and 30 years of her own personal therapy work, Aly has a vast amount of perspectives and tools to offer her clients ranging from the evidence-based/scientific to the esoteric.

She particularly enjoys working with other female, autistic, AD/HD, HSP, or other sensory-sensitive adult creatives and psychotherapists/medical professionals who want to engage in a deeper exploration of Self through polyvagal-guided, somatic, feminist, and neuro-affirmative approaches to the healing of trauma.

Aly also offers clinical consultation for clinicians seeking to better identify, assess, and support late-diagnosed female autistic/ADHDers in therapy and loves discussing things like differential diagnosis, polyvagal-guided approaches, and neuro-affirming care.

Some of Aly’s favorite tools in therapy include psychoeducation, autonomic nervous system mapping, family of origin explorations, friendship/relationship/trauma/addiction timelines, inner child reparenting, Attachment-Focused EMDR resource tapping, creative expressive arts, dreamwork, sensory safety planning, and identifying strengths and interests as pathways toward more wellness.

As a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist, Aly primarily works with women who have been stuck in cycles of unfulfilling, painful, or traumatizing relationships that are seeking to re-establish a solid relationship with the SELF in recovery.

Aly’s practice is rooted in the principle that “safety is the treatment” and is based upon the three essential elements required for the nervous system to experience safety (as taught by Deb Dana, LCSW):

[image by Deb Dana, LCSW]

1) Context. I enjoy providing information of all kinds, including the perspectives that inform my work. Please see my clinical perspectives page for additional info about my primary theoretical orientations and approaches to psychotherapy.

2) Choice. I value personal autonomy and believe that having choices in therapy (as in life!) is essential to safety. I work collaboratively and openly with clients around treatment goals, interventions, and paths we can take in therapy – and will offer referrals to other clinicians when there are specific treatment needs or interests that fall outside of my current scope of practice.

3) Connection. I believe that “safety is the treatment and actively work to explore and provide the cues of safety each client needs to ground into a deeper connection with their inner wise Self and with me as the therapist.