Marlina Selva, PsyD, LMFT


“When one side only of a story is heard and often repeated, the human mind becomes impressed with it insensibly.” ~George Washington

Messages that we tell ourselves or are told to us can have everlasting consequences if we allow them to overpower us. This can be good when the messages are positive. However, negative messages can also dictate our futures, leaving us stuck fighting the past and preventing us from enjoying happy moments in the present and from focusing on building new aspects of our lives. Sometimes, an objective listener such as a therapist can help shed light on patterns of behaviors or thoughts that prevent a person from realizing their full potential. Marlina Selva


I have a B.A. in Psychology from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), as well as a Master’s and Doctoral Degrees in Marital and Family Therapy from the California School of Professional Psychology (CSPP) at Alliant International University in Irvine, CA.


I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT #50548) and have worked in the field of marital and family therapy since 2005. Prior to joining The Davis Group I was with Adolescent Counseling Services (ACS) as the Site Supervisor at Jordan Middle School coordinating case referrals, managing crises, and working with a clinical team to ensure students’ social-emotional needs were met.

I also spent several years as a Licensed Clinician/Clinical Supervisor at Bilingual Family Counseling Services, Inc., in Ontario, CA, where I provided clinical training and supervision to trainees and interns in addition to counseling and case management for individuals, couples, families, and children.

I have an extensive history working in the Promoting Safe and Stable Families (PSSF) and Child Abuse Prevention Services (CAPS) programs. I also provided school-based counseling services to students and responded to crisis calls from schools and collaborative affiliates of the school district.

I specialize in working with pre-teens/adolescents and their families, as well as couples therapy. I have particular skill in helping families with a foster or adopted child get along with each other and the community.

Clinical Specialties

I specialize in working with pre-teens and teenagers and their families. I provide therapy to children and families struggling with attachment difficulties, in particular adopted children who are struggling to adapt to their new family. Adoption can be tough for both the child and new family, especially if the child comes from a traumatic background. I also work with teenagers struggling with self-esteem issues, depression, and anxiety. Palo Alto and Pleasanton have some of the highest teen suicide rates in the country, which tugs at my heart every day. Teenagers and their families face so many complex pressures these days – more complex than at any other time in history, it seems. Whether you are a teen or a parent of a teen seeking therapy, I am devoted to helping you navigate these difficult times.

I also specialize in couples therapy. Thriving in a contemporary marriage or relationship takes a lot of work. If you are struggling to stay connected, rekindle the spark that brought you together or perhaps navigate complex issues such as healing from an affair or deciding whether to stay together, I can help.

Regardless of who I am working with, I utilize evidence-based therapy grounded in the latest research in psychology and neuroscience. My approach to therapy with teens and adults is informed by attachment theory. Whether the goal is to help a child affected by trauma such as neglect, abuse, and abandonment, or to help a couple establish a secure, loving relationship, the task is the same: to feel secure and loved by our significant others, and to be available and responsive to their needs. If those are your goals, I can help you.


In my spare time, I enjoy swimming, running, bird watching, and other outdoor activities, as well as spending time with my family in the Bay Area.


Availability & Rates

  • Monday-Friday, 9-7
  • $200 per 50 minutes